Photogenic Presents, Episode 12: Expired Film Club
Expired Film club was launched by Miles Myerscough-Harris in early 2020 as a way to share his passion for expired film stocks. Propelled by global skyrocketing interest in film photography and specifically expired films, the EFC TikTok has grown to an incredible 1.4 million followers in just 2 years.
To celebrate the launch of the brand new Photogenic x Expired Film Club Collection, we interviewed Miles to learn more about this remarkable project, how it got started, and what the future holds.
Tell us a little bit about your own photography journey?
I suppose my journey started from birth! Honestly, as long as I can remember I've always had a camera in my hand. From home videos where I steal the camcorder from my parents, to studying photography at school, and now it becoming my career – it’s always been my passion.
When did you start shooting film, and what was the impetus?
I first shot film at 6th form (high school in US English!) and loved the process, but after I finished school I had a long period where I didn't shoot film for a number of years. Just before the pandemic was when I really started again, inspired by my brother who got an old Pentax P30t as a birthday present! It just brought memories of school flooding back and sparked the flame in me again.
@expiredfilmclub Shooting some expired film from 1991 🎞 do you like the results? Shop film, cameras & more from my profile 📸 #expiredfilmclub #expiredfilm #filmcamera #PerfectPartner #ITriedItIPrimedIt #fyp ♬ original sound - julianachahayed
Tell us about launching Expired Film Club? How did you come up with the idea? Did you try other ideas before that one, or did I just “happen”?
Expired Film Club was truly a pandemic-sparked creation. I usually work in the music industry on everything from audio to video production, but when Covid hit, the whole industry just ground to a halt - for months. I was furloughed, and it meant I really had time to delve into my love of film photography again… through that I found great joy in discovering & shooting old expired films & started to document it on social media.
Most people know EFC from the TikTok, but Expired Film Club actually does a number of things. Can you tell us more about them?
Yes - as my 'regular' job I run a media production business, mostly to do with music, so I am often out on shoots or doing edits/mixes in my little home office, and film photography is a big part of what I can offer now through Expired Film Club. EFC is also an online store, where I sell lucky dip boxes of expired film, cameras and accessories, plus I now have a membership where members get sent boxes of film bi-monthly and receive perks with official partners.
@expiredfilmclub Shooting photos on the world’s tiniest film camera 📸 results at the end! Huge thanks to @Film Camera Photographer 📸🎞 for sending me this to try #expiredfilmclub #expiredfilm #filmphotography #nostalgia #trending #fyp ♬ original sound - John Mark Nelson
Watching your TikTok videos, it almost seems like there’s an endless supply of great vintage film that’s never been shot. As much as you can divulge, where do you find all this incredibly unique, rare expired film?
I have my sources ;) haha… honestly I've found it's just about asking around and connecting with people in the community. The film I use comes from all over the world, but you can also never beat a cheeky eBay search!
1.4 Million Followers is an amazing amount by any measure. Perhaps even more so for a channel so focused on what many outside the world of film photography might consider a “niche” subject. What do you think it is about EFC that has driven such tremendous interest?
I'm honestly not sure. I think it's a niche that's just mainstream enough that it can capture the attention of people who don't know much about it - a camera is a camera at the end of the day - but people may be intrigued by the interesting & vintage camera/film I use in the videos. I think people find the videos themselves quite satisfying as well, seeing the film get loaded and then shot, plus I try to make the subject of each post interesting or picturesque.
@expiredfilmclub @BILLIE EILISH shot on expired film in London 🎞 do you like the results? Shop film, cameras & more from my profile! #expiredfilmclub #expiredfilm #filmphotography #billieeilish #JDSummerDrip #fyp ♬ bad guy - Billie Eilish
What is your favorite subject to photograph personally?
Landscapes in autumn, or live music. Or my dog Monty!
What subjects do you find get the strongest response on the EFC TikTok channel?
They seem to be my 'film loading videos' - where I show a POV of myself loading film into the camera & then the results of that roll.
By the looks of the TikTok, you must own dozens of vintage film cameras. How many (approximately) do you own, and where did you find them all?
I do own a lot… I'm always buying and selling though, I only really keep the ones that I really really like. But I'd say I have about 20 or so on the shelves at the moment.
What’s the coolest camera you’ve ever come across?
That's a tough one… maybe the tiny Tone subminiature camera I was given by my friend at Aim Shoot Develop.
Is there any film you’ve always wanted to shoot but never had a chance to?
@expiredfilmclub Shooting some film on my Canon F-1 in Hyde Park 🎞 #expiredfilmclub #filmtok #filmcamera #nostalgia #UARushChallenge #fyp ♬ I Fall In Love Too Easily - Chet Baker
If you could meet and spend a day with any one photographer, living or dead, who would it be?
I went to the Vivian Maier exhibition recently and was incredibly inspired by her black & white street photography, so probably her.
When visiting the UK, where are some places you recommend photographers go to spend a day shooting film?
Beautiful locations off the beaten track are always my favourite places. Stourhead in Somerset is stunning during autumn, I love the lake district, down south in Cornwall, or any old countryside village.
Can you give us a glimpse into some possible future projects you’re working on right now that film photographers might get excited about?
Lots in the pipeline, not least of which the Photogenic x EFC Collection!
But I would say you can expect me to be shooting a lot of cool events and people on film in the near future...
@expiredfilmclub Shooting expired film in Capri, Italy 🎞 do you like the results? #expiredfilmclub #expiredfilm #filmphotography #capri #JDSummerDrip #fy ♬ original sound - Wendlo
What is your favorite Photogenic Supply t-shirt design (other than the Photogenic x EFC designs!)
The Aperture Adventure Tee is wicked!
Name one famous person we should send one of the new EFC T-shirts to!
Dua Lipa - I always see her shooting film on tour!
See the new Photogenic x Expired Film Club Collection (pre-orders close soon!)