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:
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
5 GET IT
6 Imagine my die-hard Beatles fan friends when I mentioned I only properly listened to the albums just last year.