Life with the Narrative Clip: An interview with Christian Payne

Life with the Narrative Clip: An interview with Christian Payne 2

Christian Payne aka @Documentally

Cambridgeshire, England

How long have you been using your Narrative Clip?
Since March 2014.

How often do you use your Clip and in what settings?
Whenever travelling any journey or environment I would like to remember.

Please explain your decision behind getting a Narrative Clip?
I like to document the world around me and experiment with tech that impacts the way we interact with the world and each other.

Describe what is it about the Narrative Clip that you like best?
It’s all about the moments it captures that you would never have captured without it.

How do you wear/use the camera?


I clip it on to clothing mostly but if I am to drive a long way or be seated in the same place I will occasionally take it off to face me and whoever I am seated with.

I tend to convert the images to black and white. I feel it suits the format. Especially with low light shots.

And here is an image taken of me wearing it on stage at Thinking Digital 2014:


Image credited to Ian Forrester | Thinking Digital 2014

What’s the most surprising and/or interesting photo you’ve gotten so far?
This one that I’ve posted on my blog:

For me photography with the Narrative Clip is not about all the photos it captures. It’s about the one or two you would never have captured without it.

I clip it on and forget about it. At the end of the day there’s one or two photos captured I’d have love to have taken consciously.

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The camera was peeking out of my jacket when it captured me fastening my lad’s seatbelt.

A nothing shot to many, but so much more to me. I remember the moment, the conversation, his innocent thoughts on the world and my fatherly worry for the journey that lies ahead of him. I want to be there for every step, but it’s his journey. An adventure I’ll always want to share in. While he lets me.

I’m thinking all this as I fasten his seatbelt. In the hope to protect him on the road ahead.

Do you have any stories around how people react to the Clip?
On the whole, when noticed, it’s been met with curiosity and interest. It’s only when people think it records video or sound that I get more serious questions.

What is best moment you’ve captured with the Narrative Clip and why?
Any moment that takes me back to a place. Sometimes just reviewing the images will remind me of something I wanted to recall from the day. This is especially useful when writing. The images do not have to be sharp or well composed to remind me of that part of the day, of details I would otherwise have forgotten.

What’s a specific use case for your Narrative Clip that you’re looking forward to?
I’m looking forward to travelling to more places where photography is not always allowed. Recently I was in Lebanon and captured images that I would not have lifted a camera for.

What’s a feature(s) you’d really like to see added to the Narrative service in the future?
I would like a bright large optic that collects more light. I’d also like the lens to be flush with the camera so that it does not collect pocket fluff. The non flush lens is a pain. I’d also like to be able to view and selectively download images from the camera via a mobile device. There are many times I travel where there is no internet connection and the images are either stuck on the camera or clogging up a laptop while I wait to upload. I’d also like a variety of fastening options. A lanyard or magnet perhaps. A better clip etc..

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Low light is pretty bad. Looking forward to future iterations.

Also it would be easy to make it waterproof. I worry when out and about.

Anything else you’d like to add?
I charge mine face down with a little solar panel that sits next to a window so it’s always ready to go. This would make a great accessory. Maybe if there was a little solar panel on the back perhaps?

Keep up the good work.