“It’s tangible, romantic, rich and vibrant,” replies Daan van Dam when asked what it is he loves about analogue photography. “The patience you need to have and the uncertainty of whether a shot will be a masterpiece or a mistake is the beauty of it all.” It’s this poetic concept that became the essence of One Shot, a project developed by Daan alongside Zack McDonald and Zorica Radovic.
One Shot is a “new kind of online gallery aimed at celebrating analogue photography and getting affordable art out into the world,” the trio explains. Organised around editions, each one features the work of one photographer. Commissioned by Daan, Zack and Zorica, each photographer is given one roll of film to shoot as they wish. Each shot from this roll is then sold sight unseen, with a limited edition print of one produced for each shot. “It could be a masterpiece or an accident,” Zack explains, “but either way, it’s one-of-kind. We destroy the negatives making them the most limited, limited edition photos ever.”
Zack and Daan both currently work together at R/GA in Portland but when they first conceptualised One Shot, they were working at Anomaly in Amsterdam – Zorica at the time was also in Amsterdam at …,staat. “It seemed like, almost overnight, the photographers we worked with in advertising shelved their film cameras and went digital – which makes absolute sense from a commercial perspective,” Zack recalls. “Still, it made us sad because it felt like a part of the craft was dying.”
One Shot officially launched in 2016 when the trio found themselves all living in the same city again and have since featured the work of Brian Finke, Jeff Luker and Halal (Lotte Van Raalte, Johan Kramer and Olya Oleinec). For One Shot’s fourth edition it recently partnered with Polaroid Originals, giving Robbie Augspurger, Driely S and Stephanie Gonot the chance to each shoot 24 images on the Polaroid One Step 2 camera, all sold in the same fashion as previous editions.
Each edition also features a one-day exhibition where all of the images are on display: “So many things need to fall into place for a great shot to happen,” Zorica adds. “I enjoy working on One Shot because we’re bringing that magic out into the world and making it attainable for people who might not normally go to gallery openings or afford an original piece of art.”
“We’d love to keep doing this as long as people are interested in it,” she continues, “so far the photographers we’ve reached out to have been curious and keen to collaborate so that says a lot about there being a need to experiment and put out work that’s unconventional.” Whether the future of One Shot exists in further collaborations with brands, music festivals, museums or charities, Daan, Zack and Zorica hope to work with one of their idols such as Larry Clark, Martin Parr or Cindy Sherman: “Hopefully they read It’s Nice That.” Fingers crossed!
About the Author
Ruby joined the It’s Nice That team as an editorial assistant in September 2017 after graduating from the Graphic Communication Design course at Central Saint Martins. In April 2018, she became a staff writer and in August 2019, she was made associate editor.