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7 Reasons To Pack A Film Camera On Your Next Trip

Film will always be a timeless article of history, but that doesn't mean it should be put the rest just yet. In fact, it is in more ways more powerful than what we can achieve today in the world of photography. Here's why I think you should reconsider..

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1. It Brings You Closer To Your Environment

Samsara / Via theverge.com

Due to the fact that a normal roll of 35mm will give you 24- 36 exposures, it forces you to slowly and carefully understand your frame before you click the shutter. How many of the 25 rapid-fire photos that you take on your next hike are actually worth keeping? Quality > Quantity.

2. There’s Always a Surprise

Sophie Fontaine / Via sowildphotography.tumblr.com

Film cameras don’t offer you the ability to dial in your settings and then monitor them real-time before taking your shot. Sometimes you will make mistakes, brilliant, magical mistakes that give your image a certain imperfect quality that you will happily thank yourself you made. After sending your film off to the lab, the waiting game begins, as you never know what you’re going to get! This feeling of anxious excitement doesn’t exist in the world of digital immediacy.

3. The Photos Exist Forever

Via thehistoryblog.com

No more, “Oh no! I accidentally deleted it!” You now have a physical copy of your photo that will exist for as long as you can store it. There’s something to be said about a photo existing forever; it will certainly remind you of the value of the moment you chose to capture.

4. The “Look”

Steve McCurry / Via whattheyshoot.com

For years, various companies have been trying to emulate the look of film in a digital space, but have not been able to mimic the unique qualities that it possesses. The richness of the color that you get from shooting on film is unable to be recreated by even the most powerful of digital cameras. Along with color, film has remarkable dynamic range. The ability to capture such great latitude between your highlights and shadows is a property that digital has been working towards improving, but it cannot live up to that of a roll of well-exposed film.

5. You Don’t Need a Battery To Charge

effate.com / Via effate.com

Imagine that you're out on a hike and you witness one of nature's most precious moments, but forgot to charge the dang camera battery! Film cameras rely on internal mechanics, and the only battery that you may need to replace every couple of months is the one for the light meter. Even then, you can still shoot beautiful photos without it.

6. It’s Inexpensive

Digital cameras are pricey, very pricey. You can pick up a Pentax K1000 or a Canon AE-1 for less than $100, and buy a roll of film for less than $5. Surely a digital camera is more convenient, but you are paying much less for the ability to capture a timeless memory on a timeless medium.

7. Grain

Freckled Magazine

This may be one of the most praised aspects of shooting on film. Digital cameras create digital “noise” when the sensor is pushed beyond its capabilities, where film offers a beautiful, crisp, uniform grain pattern that provides sharpness and texture to the frame. Again, this is something that has yet to be accurately re-created in the digital world.

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