When Did You Last Shoot on Film?
Over the past couple of decades, film cameras and analog shooting have taken some major hits. This was to be expected as digital cameras and recording devices got better and better, but for some people, film was and still is everything. I just recently finished watching Kodachrome on Netflix, a story about the end of an era in which people traveled from all over the world to the last remaining shop who developed the world-famous Kodachrome film before it was discontinued. This had me thinking about all of the other film varieties that I've read about dying off and the industries that went along with them. Even Canon, one of the largest DSLR/SLR manufacturers in the world has just recently announced that they're ending production of all film cameras as of this year and will end servicing them after 2025.
Interestingly enough though, not everyone is on the track to rid the world of film photography. Groups such as the Impossible Project have made strides to bring back film standards and shooting, such as Polaroid/Instax cameras. This has now been growing its own niche market over the past few years and it's certainly gaining traction. There's just something about being able to hold the image in hand and when it comes to polaroids, only having one copy of that moment. But for those of us who enjoy shooting on film and want some flexibility, there are still plenty of SLRs left in the world, both new (relatively) and old.
Last year I began my film experience on a Pentax Spotmatic (Honeywell) from 1964. I found the body and a 50 f/1.4 lens in a small town antique shop in California. I shot a handful of rolls on it over the past year and absolutely loved the experience. The colors could be so vibrant and the details so fine. I certainly fell in love with the process and wanted more. Sadly though, my shutter broke and fixing it was not really a viable option. So I began my search for a new body and at that point, I figured maybe an upgrade was due.
After doing some searching and research, I came across an old EOS-3 from a small camera repair store in town. At only a couple hundred bucks and in its condition, it was a solid deal compared to what I found elsewhere/online, so I took it home that day. I was so excited to shoot and test what it could do. I'm normally the type of person to take a couple of weeks to shoot an entire roll of 36 exposures, but I went through the whole roll in one weekend. I dropped off the roll at the only place in Alaska that still develops film and waited. Finally, I picked up the roll just yesterday and took a look at what I got.
I definitely still need practice and I've got a lot to learn about the body, but I was pretty darn excited about what came out of it. Here are a few of my favorites!
Surprisingly enough, you can still find the old Kodak/Fuji single-use film cameras with 27 exposures in stores like Walmart and Walgreens. I picked up a few to shoot with the summer, so we'll see how they turn out!
Thanks for reading!