an Indian man in a white turban looking at the camera in Jaipur, Rajastan, India

Old School

Sports photographer Don Morley

That’s what shooting a film camera is called these days: “old school” (and it seems that almost everything I do anymore solicits that vaguely patronizing term.) Those of you who have only used digital cameras know there really was a certain specialness about shooting film, even though we who did it might take it for granted. One huge difference was, of course, with 35mm film you were limited to 36 frames (maybe 38 if you loaded your camera right), before having to fumble around for a new roll of film. If not timed right you stood a good chance of losing the shot. To avoid that, most pros carried at least two cameras slung around their necks, some even more, like ace sports photographer Don Morley above. I kept my second one loaded with Tri-X; other shooters might have used it to have a different lens readily available. If you were really cool you would tape the film cans onto your camera strap to have extra film right there, easy to get at, just like a loaded bandolier.

But those days are long gone and I for one really appreciate the shoot-forever digital wonders we have today. I wouldn’t go back to film if you paid me. (Well, I guess that depends.) But I also really cherish the work I did with film.

So what does all that have to do with the picture above and all the rest below? I’ll tell you: they were all taken with film and most all were shot with Kodachrome 64. Over the years since turning digital, if I wanted to show or use these photos on-line my only option was to digitize them with a scanner. An expensive machine called a drum scanner was the best way to do this, offering the highest quality possible, but at around $35 a pop I was prone to being overly selective!

Fortunately for me, the advance of technology has been inexorable. There are now small optical scanners that for all practical purposes are as good as drum scanners. At $600 for one of the best, I decided to go for it, and thus you have the theme for this post: the resurrection of photos that were stashed in a box somewhere never to seen again.

So take a look:

Prop for outdoor production of Aida, Verona, Italy
County Tipperary, Ireland
Man in Jaipur, the “Pink City”, Rajastan, India
A man in the streets of Jaipur, Rajastan, India

India is probably the most fun place to shoot in I’ve ever been to. I ran rampant there and almost ran out of film with several more countries on my itinerary yet to visit!

A Navajo boy on John Ford Point, Monument Valley, Arizona

The above shot was purely serendipitous – I looked over and there he was. Perfect. Later I discovered that he hung out there with his horse and would model this picture for people; that’s why you may have seen it before. I know it’s a clichĂ© shot but I’m happy with it.

School’s out and there’s a gaijin photographer! (Kamakura, Japan)
Big Door, Oaxaca, Mexico

This is a common style of doorway here and I don’t really get why they’re so big. Perhaps it was built to accomodate horses and their riders? Or maybe a large photographer?

Chrysanthemum petals

I had so much fun with my macro lens. I’ve got to get another!

Embarcadero Plaza, San Francisco
A girl running through the Observatory in Jaipur, Rajastan, India
Marin County Civic Center, San Rafael, California
Curonian Lagoon, Nida, Lithuania

I have thousands more of these “old school” photographs to go through yet. What wonders await me?

(By clicking the link embedded in most of the photos above you’ll be taken to my gallery site where you can purchase your favorite!)

This entry was published on July 6, 2022 at 1:47 pm. It’s filed under Arizona, Film, kodachrome, old school, photography, travel and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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