Brief Introduction to
Never shot film before and don’t know where to start? Shooting on film can be pretty confusing at first. There are a bunch of new things to take into consideration and working these out can feel pretty difficult.
Choosing a Film Camera
For most photographers with no experience shooting with film, 35mm will be the way to go. For one, it’s a less costly endeavour than medium- or large-format film. More importantly, it requires much less prior knowledge. It’s also by far the most popular way to shoot film.
The larger frames medium-format/ the more common 120mm film captures are also ideal for large prints, such as those commonly seen in photographic art galleries. The medium-format film is usually roll film, typically allowing 8 to 32 exposures on one roll of film before reloading is needed. All medium-format cameras mass-produced today (as of 2012) use the 120 film format. Additionally, many are capable of using the 220 film format, effectively doubling the number of frames available with 120 film. Medium-format roll film is still available from specialty shops and photographic laboratories, yet it is not as ubiquitous as 135 (35mm) film.
Large-format film, despite its incredible resolution, has become something of a rarity, both because of the costs associated with it, the relative scarcity of the film and equipment, and the technical expertise that it demands.
Large-format film doesn’t come in rolls. It comes in a box of single film sheets, which have to be loaded into the camera two at a time. And even more so than medium-format, large-format film developers will be hard to come by.