It’s not about how many exposure you can make

Shiva poses with my Twin Lens Reflex camera, the Yashica Mat 124G. The camera still works naturally. Since I can't find a battery for the exposure meter, I have to use my Powershot G11 as its exposure meter.

While cleaning up the other day I came across my old TLR camera– a Yashica Mat 124G.–a Twin Lens Reflex camera.

I also found a roll of 120mm BW film.

It had been sitting around in a drawer a good ten years, by my best guess, so it is way past its expiration date.

I will develop it in a week or two when the darkrooms open up during the winter session since BW film is notorious for having a good shelf life if it hasn’t been subjected to extreme temperatures.

Shiva and Tempe naturally found the camera interesting especially when they peered into the waist-level finder.

I had a suspicion that Shiva's curiosity would get the better of her when I set the camera on the floor and opened up the waist-level finder. I just had to find a spot that was bright. It's too bad there's just so much clutter in the background.


It’s kind of surprising how far we’ve come in terms of how many images we used to be able to capture.

It’s not just the quantity but the cost as well.

At  $4 a roll or roughly 33 cents an exposure, every shot had better count.

Mind you, after you have exposed that roll, you still have to get it developed then there’s the cost of chemicals and photo paper and time involved before you get to see an image.

I’m not at all surprised that many of my film photography students come away at the end of the semester with a better appreciation of their art form.

They may vow never to shoot film ever again, but I assure you they will think carefully before they press the shutter button.

Spraying and Praying Mentality

Curiosity is something you can always count on when you have a cat you want to photograph. You just can't get them to do it on cue and that's when you have to shoot quickly, set your exposure before hand and be ready.

One of the more common pitfalls for the digital photographer is not recognizing when to shoot a lot and when not to.

Unless I’m shooting sports or something that I can’t afford to miss like a fast action, wild life or a bird taking off or landing,  bride throwing a bouquet, groom throwing the garter, I’m seldom shooting off bursts of shots.

All the time I saved by not having to process in the darkroom is now spent in front of the computer going through a lot of pictures which are poor composed, exposed or not in focus.

Shiva eyes the roll of film which I placed next to the camera.

It’s that time of the year folks when I want to remind you that new gear doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll get better pictures.

What will get you better pictures is coming up with good ideas that excite you and then making the time to go out there with your camera.

Happy Hanukah, Merry Christmas, Maligayang Pasko to my Filipino friends and Happy New Year everyone.
Peter Phun Photography

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2 thoughts on “It’s not about how many exposure you can make”

  1. Happy New Year, Paul.

    Digital has cut the learning curve a lot for the present generation of photographers.

    But what it has done as well is change the shelf-life of a still image. As quickly as it is made, it is sent online and folks are looking for the next picture.

    Not much time is spent on studying how much effort is spent in creating it. It’s a good thing for those wanting to learn, but it also means anything that can be done so quickly often loses value in the long run.

  2. Great write-up Peter.

    I don’t know how many times I’ve tried to let other know that their brain is the best piece of equipment they have. However, it is the most underused.

    Most negate my comments as “film vs digital” attacks. Not, when you shot film, you learned to make every frame count.

    Have a great day and better Christmas Peter.

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