Dad used to have an old film camera that he took pictures of the family and our travels. Growing up, I've always been mesmerised, seeing dad work the camera (manual exposure settings and manual focusing!), then waiting for the roll of film to be developed in the "Photo Shop". Unlike shooting digital, where we get to see the photo and results instantaneously, with film, we'd have to wait. You'll have no idea if the moment you capture was perfect, or if the person blinked, or if the picture was under or over exposed. It was exciting to wait to see the results. So, recently I decided to give film a shot (get that pun? Haha...).I picked up an old classic Canon AE-1, a mid-range, standard SLR 35mm camera with a 50mm 1.4 lens, and a couple of Kodak-400 rolls of film.
I understand why people say "Shooting film makes you a better photographer". Because on a roll of film, you only get 35 to 35 shots or "exposures", plus, film can be pricey. The focusing is manual, the exposure settings are manual. Theres no room to mess up. You have to slow down. Think. Compose. Expose. Focus. Click!
"Did I get it right?", always came to my mind. I would even look at the back of the camera out of habit, as if to check if a digital picture would appear!
"What should I shoot?". Luckily, Penang Island is a lovely, photogenic place. From it's scenery to the culture, heritage, people, and food, the photographic possibilities are endless. Here are some of my first tries with film :