Film Photography?

August 28, 2015

I don’t think that anybody can deny progress, evolution, revolution, moving forward, doing better than what's has been done and despite the fact that digital photography is a progression from film photography, here I'm taking pictures with an old (definably older than me) film camera.

 

I was contemplating the idea of doing some analog photography for quite a while but it only materialised a few months ago when a friend of mine gave me as a present an Olympus OM-1. What a beautiful all mechanical instrument, it has a battery slot for the light meter but it’s not essential for the camera function. It’s rather smaller and lighter than my Canon DSLR, which it makes it good to carry all day around and it’s not as intimidating as a DSLR which makes it perfect for street photography. Not knowing if the camera would work I went to get some film and the rest is history.

 

Consequently with my experience shooting film here is my opinion and benefits of film photography. It’s initially cheaper than digital photography and it will take you to the basis of photography, the reciprocal relationship between aperture and shutter speed, as once the film is selected and in the camera the ISO cannot be changed. Therefore you need to be more aware of the constant light changing situations and manipulate the aperture or shooter accordingly to the conditions and your desire look. As film doesn’t come free, every exposure counts consequently it has slow down my process of taking the shot and makes me wait more for that decisive moment, once that you take the shot as the camera doesn’t have a back screen there are not distraction in checking the image but to continue observing and looking for the next shot to take. Also a boost of confidence rewarded you once the film is processed and the images are visible.

 

In the other hand the instant reward of seeing your images have to be put in delay until you collect the processed film from the local photo lab, with the obvious added extra cost (my next stage is doing my own film develop) and the initial expenditure keep on adding with the new purchase of film, chemicals, photo paper, all the necessary hardware and so on. All this will conspire against you and if you don’t find the list discouraging enough you should add the physical space necessary to safely storage chemicals and hardware and last but not least the necessary booking in advance of the house toilet as a darkroom and all the family compromises that implies such approach.

 

So I’m not seeing myself abandon the comfort of my DSLR, I see why we are were we are with modern technology but if you who is reading these lines have ever wonder in jump into the world of photography or film photography, I would say yes, it's worth the effort.

 

 

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