Process over results.

Shooting film is a lot like shooting a flintlock: slow, inefficient and best left to those who enjoy the process more than they value the results.

Even if used with modern film, these cameras provide no instant feedback and no easy image backup capability. Scratching the film is entirely too easy.

This particular camera was fairly advanced for the time, offering flash synchronization, auto and manual exposure options. With the availability of modern cameras, my personal interest in using film dropped to zero, even though those cameras still make cool photo props. But some of my friends still enjoy putting them to real use.

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6 Responses to Process over results.

  1. "lee n. field" says:

    My son’s ex-girlfriend is an art grad student, who specializes in film photography. Apparently folks like her are enough to keep a small market in film viable.

    • Oleg Volk says:

      Being an art grad student isn’t a practical pursuit, so the use of film makes sense. Some people feel that lack of control over the details of the process makes their work more artistic.

  2. Flint says:

    Eh… it comes down to cost. Film offers a far lower initial cost, for a given megapixel-equivalent resolution. 35mm is somewhere around 20 megapixel equivalent. Medium- and large-format gets up into the 500 megapixel range, and then proceeds up close to a gigapixel of equivalent resolution.

    Even if an entry-level camera of that sort may not be considered quite that good, it’s still going to be around 250 megapixel-equivalent. And will probably cost about the same as a digital with a tenth that resolution. A digital camera comparable to that entry-level film camera costs more than many new cars.

    Of course, the flip side contains things like the ongoing cost of ownership (film and developing adds up, whereas digital storage is so cheap that the per-photo price is close to zero), and all of those other benefits that you mentioned (preview, etc.).

    So, it then depends upon whether someone needs any or all of those additional benefits and, if not, then a balance of initial cost versus per-photo cost. Someone who shoots a lot would see the film and processing costs outstrip the initial savings. Someone who doesn’t shoot that much might never see operating costs come close to accounting for the price difference in the initial equipment.

  3. tad says:

    I wonder what Ansel Adams would have been able to do with a digital camera. Since the art of his photography was as much in the printing as the shot and subject.

  4. Paul Koning says:

    I didn’t realize film still existed. Makes me want to get my dad’s heirloom Contax working again. (The viewfinder one, not the Yashica SLR with the misleading brand label on it.)

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