Why would anybody bother in this day and age with a camera from the last century and film ? I have no answer to that. In my case not really nostalgia. Yes I did snap pictures in the film age but that was just family, holiday pictures. I never got close to a darkroom. Digital SRL’s and finally my first Full Frame camera got me addicted badly to photography. Why bother with Film then ?

The sound of film, I love the sound of the motor drive, OK OK I also dread it it means 1.5$ gone. No way of knowing how the image turned out. Slow down, think carefully for every picture. I use my trusted Minolta 7000i which over the years has lost the exposure info or any info inside the viewfinder. Talking about the viewfinder it is tinny dark. I need to check the top display for exposure readings and estimate what I want either with compensation or using another camera as reference point and all manual. Cumbersome and slow, yes. When ever I decided to take the camera along I dreaded taking it out of the bag. Every picture did take a super human effort. And it did take me 1 year to fill 1 roll with 36 pictures.

Once done I had to wait almost 2 weeks to see the results. People can be harsh critics of you work. But seeing them on a roll of film was an even harder slap reminding me how much more I have to learn. Beside the fact that I guess that they had a little issue at the lab and scratched the pictures.

From the 36 frames the general consensus is “You suck sell your gear” , there are maybe 2-4 where I may say nice snapshots but not more. With lots of work in the digital darkroom maybe the can be salvaged.

Based on this result the only conclusion beside selling my gear would be to drop film pictures and focus on the digital pictures. And despite all that I will actually continue to shoot film and be even more selective and focused. All this hard work makes me appreciate how easy things are in the digital world. Taking every picture with intent. Owning the camera with all its limitations and even more for its possibilities. I can shoot digital over/under exposing by 2 stops and still get pictures that are perfectly fine to deliver to clients. There is no excuse to get it wrong but nice to know that the safety is there. I will never ever complain about any of my gear, the light or the weather.


These pictures are straight from the CD I ordered with the roll development, no retouching what so ever only slightly lower resolution. This is not portfolio material just the harsh reality of what I did take in 1 year. Not flattering and I won’t do any paid assignments with film any time soon if ever. They are ordered in the order they where taken

After reviewing them, I should have remembered if you use flash add warming gel to it or get sick people in your images

One thought on “Analog photography the ultimate reality check for my skills

  1. Well, shooting color film is tricky. You need light that matches the film and each film has its own characteristics. Also, it is very hard getting a good color photo during overcast sky

    Just keep it on, shoot during the golden hour, don’t use daylight film under artificial light (wrong white balance). A good reading about shooting film is the book “Film is not dead” by Jonathan Canlas. It gives quite a few good tips about how to shoot with film.

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