Five Frames at Sussex Street, Nottingham [Ilford HP5 400 Plus]

sussex street steps

Images shot on Ilford HP5 Plus 400 in the Pentax MX with SMC Pentax-M 28mm f2.8 and #8 yellow filter

Wow, a ‘five frames…’ post on a film photography blog is it? That’s original.

Trust me when I say I’m not ripping off 35mmc or Emulsive here. I consider this to be inspired by them. It’s a tribute. An homage.

If you’re not sure what I’m talking about, I’ll explain everything later in this post – a post featuring the shots I took around Sussex Street in Nottingham when I was finishing off a roll of Ilford HP5 400 before taking it to get developed.

There just happened to be exactly five exposures left on it. So what better kind of article to write about them than this?

What and where is Sussex Street in Nottingham?

For as long as I can remember, I’ve always known there was an area of Nottingham called Broadmarsh. There was the old Broadmarsh shopping centre and bus station – both of which always seemed like the poorer cousins of the Victoria Centre ones, to me.

It wasn’t very long ago though that I learned there was a Narrow Marsh too. And that it didn’t use to be very nice. At all. We’re talking slums and tenements.

These were demolished in the 1930s and replaced with a much nicer council estate that remains today.

A more recent redevelopment has seen Sussex Street in the old Narrow Marsh area transformed and made into a place that people actually want to spend time at.

Sitting beneath the bridge that carries trams to Nottingham Station, there’s tables and benches, a little skate park, and a couple of basketball hoops too. You’d think just those alone should make it a magnet for the local film photographers.

It was certainly photogenic enough for me to quickly rattle off these shots.

Perhaps the best old photograph I’ve found to compare how Sussex Street in particular used to look and how it does today is the 6th one on this post here. You can see the same church as the one in my shot below. It’s now a pub.

Having now read up on the old Narrow Marsh and seen some of those images from back in the day, I’m definitely going to explore the area more next time I’m in town.

sussex street nottingham

The people behind the ‘five frames’ photography articles

If you’re reading this – which you are – then you surely must be aware of two much bigger film photography websites than mine.

35mmc and Emulsive.

I believe these guys originated the ‘five frames’ format that I’ve nicked here, with posts on 35mmc more focused on the camera used whilst those on Emulsive are more concerned with the film.

I’ve submitted to both in the past – this one on the former and this one on the latter. I also contributed a ’36 frames’ article to 35mmc, which you can see here.

It’s an easy process getting your words and pictures up on those sites and I would recommend you have a go at it too if you fancy getting a little creative and putting your work out there.

For completeness’ sake, and to give a shout out to another great film photography site, I’ll mention that I’ve also contributed a few pieces to Analog Cafe, although it’s been a long time since I did. I should maybe remedy that and submit another one soon. On all three of these places.

Regardless, you can see my Analog Cafe ones here too.

A little about these five frames and how I made them

The photographs – the five frames – on this post were shot on Ilford HP5 Plus 400 in the brilliant Pentax MX with the SMC Pentax-M 28mm f2.8 and a Tiffen #8 yellow filter.

It’s the first roll I’ve shot with that filter and I’m pretty pleased with what it did for my images.

Briefly, a yellow filter will darken any shades of blue in your shot, which in most cases means the sky. Darkening the sky but not the clouds helps give them separation.

I got a little tired of having blown-out skies in some of my previous work, so thought I’d try this yellow filter for that very reason – and mainly because I was shooting landscapes whilst on a hike with the rest of this film.

All I can say is that it worked as hoped. I like it. Thanks, yellow filter.

Also, that 28mm lens is wonderful too. I really enjoy having that width to fill. It’s far more interesting, for me, than tighter focal lengths.

sussex street basketball hoops

Wrapping up from Sussex Street and Narrow Marsh

This is only going to be a short blog post. The last thing I published before this was the Kodak Ektar H35N review and that was a bit of a mammoth one. So I’m keeping this brief and just getting it out there.

But not before I give another shout out to some people I like in this analogue photography space.

There are quite a few options in the UK to get your film developed. I used to use SilverPan until they ceased operations. I was happy with the job they did and Duncan was a really good guy too. If he and they were still going, I’d probably still be sending them my film.

When I needed to find someone new, it made sense to give Make It Easy a go. Especially seeing as they’re right here in Nottingham. I was able to stroll on over right after shooting these images and drop this roll off.

In short, I couldn’t be happier with the job they’ve done with all my rolls so far and I’m not going to go anywhere else. I’ve no need to.

And that’s just about it for this post. Five frames. A five-minute read. Five shout outs. Have a look at the suggested posts below and go read five more. It might earn me about five pence in ad revenue. 🙂

If you enjoyed those five frames at Sussex Street, why not have a look at some of these other film photo essays too:

And if you think others will find this post worth a read, help them find it by giving it a share 😀

written by
Hi, I'm Lee - creator of My Favourite Lens and the one whose work you're seeing whenever you read a post on here.
I shoot as much film as I can in as many different cameras as I can, and I enjoy playing with vintage lenses on digital cameras also.

Everything I do and what I learn along the way gets shared on here, to inform and inspire you to get out and shoot as much - and as well - as you can too.

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