On Not-So-Cheap Shots and Why I Like Them

Just a few months ago, I almost gave up film photography as a hobby.  This was due mostly to the deaths of two trusty Digiprint stalls: Park Square and Ayala Life FGU.  I just couldn’t force myself to shell out cash for Island Photo, the next accessible photo lab, as it requires a staggering P220 per roll1.  To put things in perspective, 5 rolls at Digiprint cost a mere P275.  I’m sucky at math, but for the love of my remedial DLSU calculus classes – T A G A, P L I S.

That’s why chancing upon Digiprint’s Shang branch before Celina’s Cold Milk Culprits was a truly Instagrammable, terrifically encouraging2  experience.  Exactly 5 days after I left my rolls, meaning yesterday, I got my negatives in the mail.  My fervor for film, instantaneously reawakened.

This is where vocal flashbacks of my HS debate teacher tell me to make a startling statement, and here it is ­– I am a photographer.

In a highly refutable sense, that is.  I am a ~shutterbug in my own right, driven by neither vision nor technical expertise.  Quite simply, I am empowered by the desire to make my life seem cute.  So I click away.

Yes, I occasionally concern myself with capturing my subjects’3 better angles, but I’m preoccupied mostly with making these select moments last.  This moves me to this particular discussion: why I like film, regardless of being one of the few non-purist, non-photography experts who do.4 A few reasons:


  • Everything just looks more ~poignant.  Take #selfies, for instance.  Must I be accused of vanity if I took the photo for art’s sake, and not just to check my makeup?  Lomography rules dictate that I should not think, just shoot.  So by shooting myself, I’ve essentially committed (Shoot from the) Hip Harakiri – and should subsequently be referred to with honor.
  • We, unfortunately, live in the era of the Patingin / Panget Ko / Pabura.  We’re the spoiled little Dorian Grays whose cursed pictures can easily be remedied with a digital click.  I find it satisfying to snap “kebs ko sa angle mo, film yan, tingnan mo nalang next year sa Facebook ko” at those innocently annoying friends we all have.
  • Film tempers the trigger-happy.  Picture this5: I’m but a copywriter to Apol’s art director / graphic designer / aspiring animator / amateur filmmaker, yet I’ve utilized a few more terabytes than he has.  Backing up’s a bitch, and with a mere 36 exposures to each pricey roll, this bitch gets tamed good.  Plus, an accidental Empty Trash click won’t delete negatives.
  • I get to call my Facebook albums Flim and I get a kick out of people calling out my “typo.”
  • Taking expensive cameras and iPhones to the beach always has dire consequences.
  • Waiting.  Waiting is good.  Waiting is fun.  Each roll is a tiny time capsule, filled with Rememba When’s and Alam Kong Break Na Sila Pero Pwede Pa Ba ‘To I-Upload’s.
  • There’s a mild superiority over those using free iOS apps.  Bali kung sa corkboard-inspired tsinelashoes ang usapan, I shall be the Birkenstock to all them knock-off Briks.
  • Most of the time, I like mixing things up.  Shuffling is a lifestyle.6   Film shots offer content variety – a welcome getaway from those whose Me Myself And I albums consistently terrorize news feeds.
  • I have a soft spot for my Fisheye 2, my first toy camera as a grownup.
  • David Ogilvy’s Rule 3 mandates that writers should keep words to a minimum.  The same could probably be said about photos, yes?  For film, especially.  Mahal e.


A photodump of yesterday’s stash:


Lady Lumot of House Bagongligo


Maliwanag, man! Sa Diliman! [No?]

The Big Reunion Appreciation Society


Surprise birthday 2012!


My former boss and copy coach, Keena


Nagkamali sa pindot VS. Pondering On The World Through the Dimly-Lit Windows of Life


KT creating the song “Tupperware Party” from scratch


With a Kate Torralba piano + Leeroy New artwork #art #AHRT


Early stages of a New Apol project


Immunity for pretentious poses! TAKEN WITH FILM, BETCHES!


Low-angle low-fi


This Action Sampler really does sample action well



And enjoy Filter’s Take A Picture as well. It is Throwback Thursday.




1  P70 for processing, P150 for burning the negatives to a CD.  Areya killing the industry on purpose?????
2  Too much?
3  Which in most cases, is myself
4  Ibaba ang iyong kilay, ayoko ng ingay, I’m fully aware of my layman status ZOLOMOT
6  Imagine my die-hard Beatles fan friends when I mentioned I only properly listened to the albums just last year.


2 thoughts on “On Not-So-Cheap Shots and Why I Like Them

  1. Gah, which reminds me. I have a roll of film from the last time I went to Hong Kong. I’m pretty sure it’s destroyed now.

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