Olympus XA | Camera

Usually in October we join with some friends across the states and take pictures. We upload one a day for a month. Each day you vote on yesterday’s photos. At the end the winner gets bragging rights.

This year we skipped it. Mid October feeling the loss our fearless instigator came up with a new plan. Shoot film in November. I pressed for more details but it was really that simple. Shoot film in November. No plan to post & stare later. Just shoot.

I had long dreamed of carrying the FED-3 everywhere. It’s heavy and mine malfunctions so I never followed through. So I went online and looked for compact rangefinders. That lead me to discover the XA family. Then I was pushed over the edge by a friend posting a pic of his. He was using it for film November.

I hoped on shopgoodwill.com where I get all my typewriters. I watched a couple auctions before deciding on a local one. Goodwill of Seattle had one. I managed to win it. The bonus is it came loaded with film. I got most of someones Alaska photos probably from the mid 90’s.


Since then I’ve been having fun with it. The biggest challenge for me is remembering to be 2.8ft or more from my subject. In some lighting it’s super hard to see the focusing square. And I haven’t mastered taking evening/night shots. But blurry photos can be part of the fun.

I started with 800 iso film and worked down to 200. The 200 has been my favorite. It seems to give me the best colors.


This is my favorite shot so far. It’s Lomography 800 iso. There’s a park near my work. It has a tiny trail that ends in the woods. Most of November/December it was muddy. I got to the mud, took a couple more steps and got this shot. I want to make a giant print.

Here are a few more taken with it. The first two shots are the Lomography 800 and the third is Fuji Pro 200.

I’m so glad I got it. It’s been exciting to have it at the ready. Now I want to get an XA4 so I can shot things from 1ft. I just need to run more rolls through this first.


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