Film photography is an amazing form of art. I think it’s natural and captivating. The thing that I like about analog cameras is every shot is well thought out. You know you’re only limited to 24, 36 exposures so you gotta make the most out of it.
I started to explore film photography in 2012 when I brought my dad’s Nikon FM10 back to life. My dad bought this camera in one of our trips to abroad when I was a child. We had so many amazing photographs with it! and the way my dad used it seemed effortless.
My camera had some minor problems like the film advance lever was locked and the shutter wasn’t working. I took it to Columbia Photo Cubao, had it fixed by a professional. I love this shop! If you have a thing for smelling old books, this is the place to go!
There’s something about the smell of this shop that reminds me of a good ol’ book. It’s not a bad thing though! Columbia Cubao was originally at the old Rustan’s beside Shopwise near Ali Mall and SM. They already moved to General Santos street right beside Puregold. The place is relatively new but the smell of the old Columbia that I know is still there lol.
Columbia Cubao can repair and clean the insides of any analog camera. I paid 2500 PHP for the lever and shutter fix three years ago. It may sound a lot but it’s worth it. The price for camera services like cleaning and repair may range between 1800 to 4000 PHP, depends on what your camera needs.
My very first film was all overexposed(all white) and my second one was okay, some are under exposed but I kinda like it that way. The films that I had processed then weren’t as good as now. It really takes time to learn the formula in playing with an analog camera’s aperture and shutter speed.
Below are the photographs I took with my Nikon FM10. No filter here! They are beautiful enough and they definitely don’t need color adjustments. I go to Fujifilm at Eton Centris Mall for film processing and transfer to CD. Normally 2 rolls(36 exposures each) can fit in one CD and I only paid 250 PHP. It will take a week for the films to be processed because they take them to the main office of Fujifilm. Columbia can also do the same and they can develop within the day. But, I’m not sure if they do transfer to CD though. Only a couple of Fujifilm branches sell 24/36 exposure, B&W and color films. I remember I bought some in Bluewave Marikina branch. There’s always a bunch of stock in Columbia! You can always count on them.
I went to Columbia Cubao today to shop for films. Unfortunately, YKL color film was out of stock and will be available next week. I tried ILFORD HP5 plus, a black and white film. This is my first time shooting in black and white. I’m really excited for this!
YKL 36 exposure ranges around 230 PHP. Black and white like ILFORD 36 exposure is around 330 PHP. Not bad, right? I think you have to consider some things before you go out and shoot. If you’re adventurous, going to Quiapo, Divisoria or anywhere in Downtown Manila is a good subject to your photography. Just make sure you leave your fancy things at home and be street smart.
Before leaving the house, ask yourself, Do I look “Divisoria” enough? If yes, go out and shoot lol.
But really, you need to blend in the crowd. Because if you stand out, looking lost or whatever, you might get mugged. But on a lighter note, you will have the best photographs I’m sure.
If you have old cameras sitting at home, go ahead and explore it! It’s really beautiful and addicting. Do you shoot film too? Let’s go! Feel free to ask me anything!
Check out my Instagram here! 🙂