All posts by Avery Sims

Photography – The Good Old Days

Photography – Long Ago

My journey as a photographer started many years ago, in the age of 35mm film. Which came in ISO values of 25 all the way up to a heady 400 ASA. ASA was replaced by ISO in the late 80s but they pretty much mean the same thing.

Old 35mm filmBlack and White

Black and white film prevailed, simply because, for amateurs, like me, because it was easy to work with. In those days you had to develop your film and make prints to see the finished image.
A two step process involving chemicals, washing, fixing. Then the photographic paper had to dry out.

None of this as instantaneous, like today. You had a roll of film in your camera, which usually have 36 frames. You had to take all 36 shots, then develop your film before you could see what you’d got.

The Contact Sheet

Usually you’d print a contact sheet. You’d take the 36 frame film cut it into lengths of 9 frames. Put it into a sheet of photographic paper. Place a sheet of glass on top, to keep it
flat. Then make a print. This way you had, effectively thumbnails, that you could look at and select.

Color Film SlideColor

Color film was even worse. Here you had a choice of color negatives or color slides. Color slides were positives. And many of us would have had slide projectors to display them.

Developing in color was hard, the chemicals had to be within a quarter of a degree centigrade or else the colors would be skewed. Those of used that used color tended to get them
professionally developed. That would take several days unless you used a pro studio where the turnaround could be as little as 4 hours.

Film Costs

Finally film wasn’t cheap, using light sensitive compounds of silver meant that film was precious. You didn’t want to waste any of it.

Old Mechanical Film CameraOld Film Cameras

When we turn to the camera itself, there weren’t many electronics on them as there are today. All mine had was a light meter. The rest was mechanical. All my lenses were fixed focal length as zoom lenses were just to expensive and not as sharp.

My light meter in my camera wasn’t to good. So I had a separate light meter for that. Or used sunny day rule of thumb.

The History of the Camera

My New Blog

But this me blog is not about the good old days of photography. It’s about today’s photography and I’ll be adding posts when I have something of interest to say.

I just wanted to have a brief trip down memory lane, a little bit off nostalgia to get things started.