Somebody get grandad away from the 35mm! (1 Viewer)


Art should be its own hammer.
Reaper Crew
Founding member
Thinking about dusting off my old Minolta X 700.

Crazy? Or CRAZY!!!

It's not crazy.

There's something very purposeful and different about shooting on film because you can't just click the shutter 50 times and choose the best shot later. You have to think about what you're doing, like in the olden days.

I have a lot of great pictures taken with film cameras. I can't say the same for digital. I'm sure there are some, but since I don't make any prints from digital, I wouldn't know where the hell they are.

The caveat being it's costly to print from film now. I have a dozen exposed but undeveloped rolls of medium format film in a drawer somewhere...
For what it's worth, the only camera I have that still has film in it is also a Minolta. It's just a point and shoot, but I've had it for about 40 years and it still works.

Well, you can certainly develop your own black and white film and prints. At least I think you can? Are all the chemicals still available? It's been more than 25 years since I walked into a photo store to buy anything for a darkroom, so I'm slightly out of the loop.
I've been looking online and it's still possible to set up a very small/minimal darkroom that's relatively cheap. I'd probably be using black and white film anyway. You know, because I'm edgy like that. Very street. *eyeroll*
You don't need most of the things they say you need for a darkroom. But you do need a good lens for the enlarger. That's probably the biggest expense. The rest of it - it's nice to have a million little gizmos, but not necessary or critical.

I'd think a lot of old darkroom stuff is available secondhand, but maybe that ship sailed some time ago.
I remember when I wanted to be a filmmaker I thought it would be cool to buy a 35 mm camera, since filmmakers like Tarantino and Scorsese talked about the magic of film vs digital. I know, very hipster. I didn’t buy it anyways after looking up how much more trouble rather than fun it would be.

Ended up buying a Canon (can't remember the model) which I didn’t use a whole lot either since I did most recordings on my phone for simplicity's sake. Not one of my proudest investments. But it’s never too late!
Oh yeah, those wonderful times when I regularily visited a friend to use his equipement is his bathroom (no space for a special dedicatd darkroom, so the stuff had to be prepared and built for each developing-session anew).

I never felt save enough to develop the film to get the negatives on my own, so I had that done.
But then to work on the prints, that was really magic: When after the lightning you put that seemingly white piece of paper into the chemicals and experience the slow appearance of a real picture on it out of nothing, that was nearly erotic.
I never felt save enough to develop the film to get the negatives on my own
Black and white film is way easier to develop than prints.

It's all just setting timers and following a "recipe." If you know a roll is overexposed or underexposed (or intentionally "pushed" into underexposure) you just adjust the times a bit. But it's really mostly mechanical.

Developing prints, on the other hand, is art and alchemy.
True in a way. The important difference for me:
If I fuck up a print, I always have the chance to work on another one. But if I fuck up developing the film it's ruined for ever to no second chance. That's what I wanted to avoid.
That's no joke.

For years I held on to a roll of film I shot of my bedroom when I was a teenager. When I was in my 30s I went to develop it, but I hadn't developed film in a while, so I forgot to dilute the stop bath. Pouring undiluted stop bath into a film can just burns up the film, so I never got to see those pictures of my bedroom...
Ansel Adams, a master. here's something that might interest you. starts around the 9-minute mark and later.
If that's too much work - boring, you can always go all vivian maier, what genuine artist that girl was.


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