Film Photography: It’s Making a Comeback and Here's Why
By: Fionnuir Ni Chochlain
Even though many people these days have abandoned film photography for the quick and easy use of cell phones, there are a few who know that film never goes out of fashion. Some have been steady users of film cameras since they first showed up on the scene, but a fair few are teens who have realized the pureness of the medium. Everyone from Brooklyn Beckham to Kendall Jenner are taking pictures on film and it’s easy to understand why. There is nothing quite like seeing the perfect image, going through the trial and error of chemicals in the dark room and then FINALLY holding your very own print in your own two hands. Swiping through your camera roll doesn’t quite hold the same charm as flipping through an old (and slightly tattered) photo album. The pictures you print are permanent. They won’t be lost when you drop your phone in the sink or when you don’t have enough storage. Film is forever, but only if you take care and maintain it. The imperfections of film give it a certain amount of character that make each image individual. Additionally, realizing that you have a limited amount of film makes a photographer less “trigger-happy” and really attempt to get the best shot, stimulating a creativity and tenacity that most “iPhone photographers” didn’t realize they had. Film can really bring out the best in people, whether they consider themselves a budding photographer or not.
Photos Courtesy of Fionnuir Ni Chochlain
And now, how you can jump on the train! If you are an individual more about the immediate gratification, then instant film photography is just for you. Instant film is a good way to get into the scene without getting in over your head or spending too much. It’s all about getting a physical print right away without the use of any other device or processes. The main two brands are Polaroid and Fuji, and while Polaroid has suspended their line, Fuji materials are really growing in popularity these days. One rather popular item is the Instax Mini, which produces prints about the size of a credit card. These cameras use instant film that typically come in packs that contain ten pieces of film. Each piece of film contains a chemical packet attached to one end. The camera projects an image onto the film and then the chemicals are spread across the film by rollers as the film exits the camera. The chemical reactions develop the image and take a few minutes to finish, then you can see your image. But why shoot instant? Instant photography allows you to see the final product within minutes of taking the picture and like other forms of film, give you something tangible that can be shared. Additionally, making the first dive into instant film can be relatively cheap. An instant film camera can be found for less than $30 if you look hard enough at a flea market, or you might even find one in your attic. Packets of film can be purchased for relatively cheap. So get out there! Enjoy life! Capture some memories on film that you can treasure and keep close to your heart forever.