miscellaneous commentary

The Last Roll of Film

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I bought my first (and so far only) digital camera in November 2006, and since then I haven’t done much with my Pentax ZX 50. I loaded a roll of film into it some years ago and once in a while I think to take it out and snap a few pictures. The Canon ELPH broke back in May and I’ve been relying on a borrowed Samsung S630 for occasional pictures, but today I thought I’d finally use up the roll in the Pentax.

I went to take a picture of the fall colors outside my apartment and the camera made a strange noises, as though it were trying to spool the negatives. The display advanced to the next exposure but the viewfinder didn’t show anything. Something must have gone wrong with the shutter. After a few botched pictures I pressed the rewind button and removed the roll.

I went to CVS on 1st St to have the film developed. They offered 1-hour processed at a seemingly reasonable price, so I dropped off the rolll and picked up the prints after lunch. Some of the pictures shadowed over other pictures and several were out of focus. Apparently, some years ago, I tried to take a long-exposure shot of a full moon in the middle of winter, when full moons are usually brighter — only one picture was printed, and it was a blurry mess. There were a few pictures of one of the resident feral cats but they were miscolored. Suffice to say, the pictures were not impressive.

The camera bag has two unused rolls of film but I don’t think I’ll go through the effort of using them. The roll I had processed today will be my last roll of print film. Once my new cell phone arrives I’ll rely on that for all my picture-taking needs. If it weren’t for a number of scratches and black spots on the viewfinder I’d try selling the camera online. I’ll probably just donate it.

I also still have a Polaroid SX-70 but no time-zero film or flash bulbs to use. If the Impossible Project sold their makeshift film at a cheaper price I’d buy a package and put the camera to use. But as it is, I don’t think I’m ever going to use that camera again either. Such is the demise of print photography.


Written by camcarlson

October 9, 2011 at 10:29 PM

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