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Experience Counts

22 October 2018

How fire drills became more than just a waste of my time.

Culture How fire drills became more than just a waste of my time.


Written by Petrus Pommé

If you frequently have fire drills at your office you must know how boring it can be to evacuate the office and wait for the counting. I’m not criticising the importance of these drills, they are important, but I’ve found a way of hacking this feeling of boredom. At least to my wannabe-creative mind.

The alarm goes off and you hear the recording repeatedly saying “Please evacuate the building”.

HACK²: “Always take your wallet with you—Thieves take advantage of office drills to steal. “ Thanks Scott!

Everybody slowly walks out as the three fire wardens check if all the rooms are empty. In my case I go down with my camera (and my wallet), it’s from the 60s (the camera, not the wallet) and of course runs on film. It isn’t a cheap hobby and currently developing films can cost between $20 to $30 in Australia. I develop mine at Racquet Film in New Farm.

Sunny day, film camera and lens cap with sunglasses on yoga mat

Olympus OM-1 — inherited from my partner’s dad. (Kodak Gold 200)

To me it makes the whole difference. I get a break from the animating keyframes and editing repetitive voice-overs to enter the analog world of clicks & rolls instead of just the “fire-drill world”. You obviously can’t see the photos until you develop them which is the freaking point of this.

Every minute has 60 seconds of experimental creativity. 

I’m one of those audio visual guys that is 24/7 telling stories in their minds. And although a few may think I’m crazy some others join me on this habit. Sebastián Cruz is a UI/UX designer, friend and colleague that also works at Orange Digital.

Group of people gathered around meeting point
Sebastián Cruz about to snap a photo of Brendan & on the left Matthew Burns with his “CSS IS AWESOME” t-shirt — if you guessed he’s a developer you are absolutely right. “Developers, Developers, Developers” — Steve Ballmer (Kodak Gold 200)

Designer posing for photo, wearing dragonball Z t-shirt and cap.
Videographer holding film camera, wearing leopard shirt and beanie.
Myself on the hunt just like a leopard – photos by Sebastián Cruz (Acros 100)

Man standing beside white car posing for photo
Steve Johnson, “The Count” — by me (Ilford Delta 3200)

The beauty of film is to gift future you with a forgotten memory.

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