When was the last time you held a film camera in your hands? Or maybe you are from the generation that you used only a number from a young age? In any case, film photography can give you a bouquet of unforgettable emotions, you just have to start.
Where to get the camera?So, you have made up your mind. Rubicon passed, decision made. But where to get the camera? There are several scenarios. The most “disastrous” way is to ask the older generation. Surely in the closet of your parents a camera was lit up on which your children's photos were taken. In this case, you just wipe it and check the performance.
If relatives are empty, but you want to film, you should look at Avito. Hundreds and thousands of various old cameras are sold there, but most importantly, they are all inexpensive. The threshold for entering film photography is very low. Prices for soap dishes start at around 300 rubles, while SLR cameras cost about 2-3 thousand. Also, more and more specialized stores recently selling retro equipment with a guarantee and delivery in the country have begun to appear, however, it should be borne in mind that prices are often overpriced.
What to choose?In fact, it is impossible to give a definite answer to this question. It all depends on your needs. Let's go through the main possible types of cameras. So, soap dishes. The most budget and easy to use option. Soap dishes allow you to capture the moment, keep the memory. Small and light, they fit in any bag and even in your pocket. Mobility soap dish allows you to shoot in any situation.
Please note that on simpler models there is no autofocus, so they are not suitable for portrait shooting. All that is needed to take a photo on such a camera is to press a button and enjoy the characteristic sound of scrolling a film. Now a similar format for simple cameras is called point-and-shoot.
Photo taken on Olympus Superzoom 70G and Kodak Star 300 MD
The next class of film cameras can distinguish SLRs. This is a more serious and advanced technique that requires some skills in photography. Usually, the first steps towards film photography are made using Soviet photographic equipment in view of its availability and low price. At various venues you can find Zenit E, Zenit ET, Kiev-17 and other cameras for reasonable money - usually less than 2000 rubles. Cases of such devices are made of metal and have considerable weight, which makes their use not very convenient. SLR cameras of the past are surprisingly aesthetic. Often they are clad in leather cases that come with the kit, which only adds vintage and style.
To get high-quality images, you will have to figure out how the shutter speed and aperture work, and also learn how to focus in the eye. However, these inconveniences pay off with a high-quality picture and often a beautiful bokeh pattern. SLR cameras, unlike soap dishes, are great for portraiture.
Photos taken at Zenith ET
Last but not least, instant print cameras. These include the well-known Polaroid and the already modern Fujifilm. Such cameras usually have bizarre shapes and colors, look unusual and attract attention. Unfortunately, due to the design features, making instant printing cameras compact is difficult and expensive, so before you take this with you, you have to take care of the free space in the backpack. As the name implies, they can print photos immediately after shooting. For this, special cartridges are used, which, by the way, are several times more expensive than the classic film.
Before those who want to shoot on the camera instant printing is a choice between modern and classic models. New devices cost a couple of times more and offer a better picture. Moreover, cassettes for modern Fujifilm cameras are significantly cheaper than the Polaroid counterpart. In defense of the latter, it is worth saying that the factor of authenticity and atmospheric images has not yet exhausted itself.
Shots with Polaroid have characteristic colors and a recognizable format that cannot be confused, and the sound when shooting can cause emotions even for those who have never before encountered an analog photograph. If you are interested in learning more about the experience of using the classic Polaroid 636, write in the comments and we will definitely do a separate review.
Where to get the film?After buying a camera, you should have a timely question: “where to get the film?”. In relatively large cities, there are almost always specialized stores where you can buy treasured coils. By the way, the staff of such institutions can help you with the first installation of the film. If your city does not have a photo store, pay attention to the online delivery sites. Usually there are 24 or 36 frames in one coil, this should be taken into account when planning an exit photo shoot.
There are many types of films on sale with different ISO values, in other words with different light sensitivity. The cheapest and easiest way is to shoot ISO 200 on film. Over time, you should try ISO 400 and other options that give you greater freedom of action and allow, for example, to shoot in the evening and indoors without a flash.
Separately, it is worth highlighting experiments with the film. Having realized that you are ready for something new, you can buy a black and white or expired coil. Such experiments give an unpredictable result and allow you to get interesting photos. Expired film has artifacts caused by chemical processes that are constantly trying to imitate applications like Instagram. This also includes multi-exposure - shooting one frame on top of another on the same film. You can try to achieve this result in Photoshop, however, natural mixing of frames will always look more natural.
Film development is a complex resource-intensive process, which is almost impossible to do without preparation, therefore, in most cases, people simply give away the captured material in a darkroom. There, for a small fee, your film will be developed and scanned, after which you will receive photos in electronic form. It is important to remember that the cover of the camera cannot be opened until you rewind the film. Otherwise, the photos will be highlighted and irretrievably lost.
The dispute between film and figure lovers has not abated since the latter. Indeed, why spend money on consumables and wait for development in order to get an unpredictable result? Everyone must answer this question by choosing the practical or aesthetic side of the question. It is impossible to say something more commonplace, but photos on film have a soul. Unpredictable live frames that cannot be seen before the development give unique emotions. And the shooting process itself is in awe: sounds, tactile sensations, the value of each frame. Of course, the hobby for film photography is “not for everyone”, but this is the hobby chip. The comfort that the old cameras give is comparable to reading a battered book found in the attic in the village, so a film photo is a great way to plunge into the past and imbue the spirit of a bygone time.