For more than two centuries, we strived to improve the technology and performance that a camera can provide. In a technical sense, we have managed to bring photography to perfection. With the almost unlimited choice of smartphones, DSLR cameras, tablets, and other devices, everyone is able to capture a solid-quality photo. Even more, if we don’t like what we shot, we can delete it, and then revive it again when we change our minds.
Although perfect photos on display provide so many options, something is missing.
We miss the feeling of a printed photo in our hands. We lack the excitement and uncertainty that goes with using films or the limited number of attempts you have. That’s why many photo artists are going back to roots, to find analog cameras from the times when they weren’t even born.
Back to the Roots
In the same way as old typewriters or vinyl records, a vintage analog technology has become modern for many different reasons.
Printed photography is an entirely different thing than the one shown on the screen. Everything is more exciting, from developing photos in the darkroom to looking at the details and all the imperfections, which is the real magic of traditional photography.
Find Limitations Inspiring
Many artists discover their true passion in analog photography — without digitizing and manipulating photos. What you capture with your eye at the moment, you get it. There are no corrections or memory cards, and since the film has limited exposures, photographers must carefully use every frame.
Still, it would be helpful if you learn how to handle some manual tools, like shutter speed, aperture, and ISO sensitivity.
In Search of Authenticity
We all noticed how the old ’70s photos looked somehow more real and authentic. And new generations are in love with this vintage style. What’s more interesting, we use the most expensive digital equipment to shoot a perfect photo and then apply things like a VSCO filter to make the image look “authentic” or just older and of lower quality. However, no application can do what an analog camera can.
Enter a New Value
Do you remember the shredded Banksy? If you do, then you probably notice how paper artworks seem to get more value every day. Even the merchants who sell analog cameras and darkroom supplies confirm this.
The increasing number of photographers are opting for the analog instead of the digital version of their work. It seems that the limited capabilities, required focus, and the skills of manually manipulating shapes, light, or movement make photos of this kind more appreciated.
Tip: If you are trying to use an analog camera for the first time, pay attention to some essential rules. As with meditation, it is necessary to calm your breath and focus on what is important. Remember that you cannot take several shots, but only one. Make a perfect composition and then hit the shutter.