Intro to Film Cameras

I love film. I started shooting film as a kid and shot film thru college until I moved to digital. I still have my very first film camera, a Pentax ME-Super, however that camera doesn’t see as much use as some of my other film cameras that I tend to use on a regular basis. Shooting film will show you down. The workflow is not quick and intuitive like shooting digital. Most of my film cameras are 100% manual. That means no light meter, no auto focus. It’s amazing how with digital, we’ve come to rely on the camera’s built-in light meter. And how much easier it is to shoot with auto focus. And that LCD display on the back of the camera! We take a shot and then, bam, we can see exactly what we got. Not so easy with film.

So… am I suggesting you run out and buy a film camera and film? Well, unless you’re super-curious, it’s a fairly big undertaking. First off, there’s the cost. What formerly was relatively inexpensive and the standard for photography, has now become more of a niche market. Lot’s of great film is no longer manufactured. Lots of great cameras are no longer manufactured. In fact, most camera manufacturers have abandoned film for digital, however film is still alive and kicking. All I’m saying is for you to be prepared. Be prepared to mess up and be prepared to be amazed.

So a little food for thought before you run out and buy a film camera or load film into that old camera you have laying around or was handed down to you. I think shooting film can help make you a better photographer, but it’s up to you to weigh the pros and cons before you take the plunge.

Please subscribe and leave your questions and comments below.
—- Click the link to the left to get your FREE 14 day trial of Squarespace. There is no credit card required for your free trial!!!! If you decide that Squarespace is for you please use code “ADAM” at checkout to get 10% OFF your first order.
Video Rating: 4 / 5


  1. canturgan
    April 18, 2015 at 2:43 pm #

    Negative film is very forgiving towards over exposure so use the sunny 16
    rule and go for it.

  2. epistades1
    April 18, 2015 at 3:32 pm #

    that’s weird – i didn’t know Mark Cuban had tattoos and liked photography

  3. Fendernirvana
    April 18, 2015 at 4:31 pm #

    I have the f100 as well but it’s quite complex and i rarely venture outside
    of P mode. Can’t help but always find my self reaching the Canon AE1, A1
    or EF as the go to to cameras. The F100 gets left home a lot.

  4. Timothy Brown
    April 18, 2015 at 5:21 pm #

    I wouldn’t say to set exposure manually is to “roll the dice.” If you know
    what you’re doing, you get consistent results, right?

  5. kliveo
    April 18, 2015 at 6:03 pm #

    Back in the day, I would buy film, shoot film, process film, contact sheet
    the film, then edit and sellect for printing the most useable frames from
    the contact sheet. I miss those days, digital bores me so much I retired
    from commercial photography when digital killed of 90% of traditional

  6. junelopez215
    April 18, 2015 at 6:05 pm #

    Can you do a video on how you scan your film into your computer for
    processing in Lightroom.. 

  7. M Khan
    April 18, 2015 at 6:58 pm #

    Hey there, great video.
    What lens was it on the Hasselblad?

  8. Ataraxia Photography
    April 18, 2015 at 7:29 pm #

    Digital photography makes sense if your photos are going straight into a
    computer for editing or sharing, although there’s a LOT of improvement yet
    to come. Film was cheaper when it was the only option for the masses, but
    now it’s more of a niche item. The clarity, effects, and ability of film
    to store raw data are unparalleled, but if you’re not trying to make
    timeless masterpieces to last for years to come, digital is cheaper,
    private, and provides instant feedback at no additional cost. I shoot film
    as a hobby; if it need digital photos, I have a cell phone. I think the
    best 135 cameras have already been made, and there are only a few options
    for a really great 120/220 SLR.

  9. Stefan Meyer
    April 18, 2015 at 7:31 pm #

    If I had a $1 for every time he said “Really Cool”, I would be able to buy
    a goat to kick me up the ass, then buy all the film cameras in the world
    and burn them for teh memories

  10. kate s
    April 18, 2015 at 7:56 pm #

    I have been using film for over 10 years and just got a pentax km I love
    it. I’m just curious what do people use if there going traveling for
    months? It seems digital would be safer (not risking losing your precious
    rolls) but I love the way film comes out. 

  11. deltadave44
    April 18, 2015 at 8:37 pm #

    recently had my A-1 cleaned/serviced…what would you suggest for film to
    use for doing “studio style” portraits? …velvia? provia? portria
    160?…also what film scanner would you suggest…i’m currently using my
    epson v600 to scan my slides (it does a decent job but is a little
    awkward)…thanks…big fan

  12. Rebecca Hong
    April 18, 2015 at 8:49 pm #

    I went to magnet art high school and during my sophomore year, it was
    mandatory for all visual arts students to take photography. Ever since that
    class, I begun to take a strong interest in photography. Over the last few
    years, I’ve fooled around with my DSLR camera along with a couple
    Polaroids. I’m interested in starting film and I was wondering what kind of
    camera would you recommend for a “beginner” on a budget? haha (:

    Thanks in advance ~ ^^ *subscribed* 

  13. Jonny Kanthan
    April 18, 2015 at 9:47 pm #

    i just got the canon A1 today. really looking forward to using it :D

  14. Wypadkowa Przypadku
    April 18, 2015 at 9:58 pm #

    I can see there a Zenit 12XP.
    I use an older version, the Zenit TTL. First model with Through The Lense
    light mesurement.
    I shoot on film because it’s harder.You need more knowladge, time and
    36 frames on a 35mm film makes me think about every shot.
    Every frame must be precise.
    That’s why I shoot only on film.

  15. JacksonLee K S
    April 18, 2015 at 10:49 pm #

    WOW…cool..! I love to take film photos and I’m using Nikon FM10 camera
    with Black & White Film… i hope i can get Nikon F100 try on it… 🙂
    Nikon F100 looks cool n easy to use than Nikon FM10… you had a lot of
    cool camera… hope we can meet up n take pics together and i can learn
    something from you.. I’m living in NYC.. :D

  16. morfes
    April 18, 2015 at 11:41 pm #

    Funny, my first slr was also the Pentax ME Super and still have it to.

  17. Ben Kleschinsky
    April 19, 2015 at 12:29 am #

    Thanks for the intro! Wanted to always get into film cameras but recently
    just invested in a digital. Will have to save up again but luckily their
    cheap :D

  18. ravelg
    April 19, 2015 at 1:13 am #

    This was a fun video. 

  19. Tj Jizzi
    April 19, 2015 at 1:14 am #

    i cant get enough of my ae-1. its a good time to develop it at home and
    make some prints in the darkroom

  20. Howie Mudge
    April 19, 2015 at 1:20 am #

    I love my F100, I also have a Pentax ME Super and Olympus Om2 sp. I don’t
    shoot loads of film but I always love the results when I do shoot film 🙂 

  21. Ben Kleschinsky
    April 19, 2015 at 2:01 am #

    My grandfather gave me his Canon T50 what do ya think of that camera?

  22. grady borte
    April 19, 2015 at 3:00 am #

    i have a polaroid 600 and paid about 20 dollars for 10 exposures. where do
    you buy yours and is it any cheaper? 

  23. Allante715
    April 19, 2015 at 3:11 am #

    Love the F100. Great piece.

  24. reddog694uk
    April 19, 2015 at 3:48 am #

    With modern DSLR’s and mirror cameras, the price of the camera alone can be
    equated to many years of 35mm film processing…..Many years, many, many
    years. An occasional shooter could do alot worse than learn photography the
    old school way and stick with a top model 35mm !