From scratchy vinyl records, clunky mechanical typewriters, and paperweight film cameras, analogue is back and in high demand.
Analogue is making a huge comeback.
In a digital world where everything is so instant and accessible, why on earth are rational people choosing the obsolete hardware and technology of a bygone era?
Why choose a 50-year-old camera over its insanely superior descendant (while forking out a lot of money to do so)?
I have an opinion.
I am the proud owner of a mint Nikon F 35mm camera. This very same camera model stopped a bullet and saved Vietnam Photojournalist Don’ McCullin’s life in 1970. This camera was also used in space by Apollo 15 astronauts in 1971.
I’ll stop boasting, but suffice to say I have caught the nostalgic analogue photography bug in a big way.
Some may comment (and my wife is probably one of them) that even the camera on the most mediocre mobile phone is infinitely better than the best 70s Nikon offering.
Almost anyone can indeed take an impressive photo, multiple impressive photos, quickly, for free with their phone. Slap on a filter and post it on the ‘gram and receive hundreds of hearts and hearts, with barely any effort or cost.
Barely any effort or cost.
And that’s the smoking gun.
We live in a time where most things are easy and instant – but easy and instant have come at a price. Easier and instanter = increasingly less rewarding.
The value of something is measured by its cost – the value of the commodity exchanged for it (whether it be time, money or services traded to gain that something. Anyone who has saved for months to purchase something understands that while a receiving gift is always most times awesome, you almost always value the item you worked hard for much more.
Something is valuable because of what it costs you.
Things are cheap these days, and people treasure many things far less because it costs them far less.
Our world is fast. We are stressed. We are burning out. Advances in technology should have meant that we could achieve more in less time so that we could have more time for rest – but we are expected to achieve more and more and more, faster and faster and faster…
While we medicate more, stress out more, break up more, break down more…
And die faster.
There is something incredibly satisfying about slowing down.
I think that people are beginning to wake up to the fact that the promises made by the instant and accessible have turned out to be empty and immaterial. People are yearning for a more restful, meditational, and valuable life.
- Choose the camera.
- Choose the film.
- Load the film
- Advance the film.
- Choose the lens.
- Choose the shot.
- Frame the shot
- Measure the light.
- Choose the Shutter speed.
- Choose the Aperture.
- Manually focus.
- Press the shutter release.
- Repeat steps 3-12 until the film is finished.
- Manually rewind the film.
- Send the film off to be developed.
- Wait patiently but with growing excitement until the photos arrive.
- Enjoy every photo.
- Slow down.
- Enjoy life.
- Live longer.