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Sayulita Salvage

One week after returning from Sayulita, I got a call from the film lab. Bad news:

The film was destroyed. Distorted beyond recognition, probably due to a mistake in loading the film. According to the lab it was unusable—not even worth getting the rolls scanned.

Shooting on 16mm for the first time, hiccups were inevitable. But stubbornly, I still couldn’t admit defeat… so I asked the lab to scan it anyway.

The next day I got the scans. Sure enough, every single shot was clouded with intense jitters and streaks. You could hardly make out people from trees. Waves and sand blurred together in a jumbled mess.

But hope wasn’t lost. Hints of faces and scenery survived in the noise. With some heavy cutting and color work, the moments gradually came back into focus.

The result is still far from ideal. But ultimately, the salvaged film resembles my memory of the trip—finer details obscured, but with unmistakable warmth and joy.

On that note, major love to the friends who made the trip so memorable. Please forgive me for blowing the shots :)


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