|120-size box from 1961, courtesy of Pacific Rim Camera|
|1951 box for 828 size Panatomic-X, courtesy of Pacific Rim Camera|
|My most recent 1959-vintage Rolleiflex 3.5E with the 5-element 75mm f/3.5 Schneider Xenotar lens.|
|Former residence room in the Junius Ward YMCA on Clay Street in Vicksburg, Mississippi, early 1990.|
|Cemetery in Kalavrita, Greece, 1998, Leica M2 35mm camera.|
|Shotgun houses in Grayson Court, Jackson, Mississippi, 2004.|
|The Junius Ward YMCA on Clay Street, Vicksburg, 2004. The Old Courthouse Museum is in the distance.|
|Two shotgun houses on Bowmar Avenue, Vicksburg, 2005. Both have been town down.|
|The New21 Club on Hwy 61, Valley Park, Mississippi, 2016.|
|Blue Front Cafe, Bentonia, Mississippi, 2010.|
|Administration building (1936) at former Bonner Campbell Institute, Edwards, Mississippi (click to see 2400 pixel frame)|
- Even by the 1980s, most photographers wanted faster film so that they would not need to use a tripod in low light.
- Newer T-grain or tabular films like Kodak T-Max or Ilford Delta 100 offered almost as fine grain but with faster speed.
- A friend from Rochester who has worked with Kodak said there was a toxic chemical used in the Panatomic-X production. I have read the same pertaining to Agfapan 25, so maybe slow fine grain films required some chemical technology that manufacturers cannot use today.
|Unused Teen Center, 407 West Green Street, Tallulah, Louisiana, December 2016. Fuji GW690II photograph.|
|Unused church in Hermanville, Mississippi, January 2017. Rolleiflex 3.5E.|
|Little Bayou Pierre, Port Gibson, Mississippi, February 2017. Port Gibson is the town that General Ulysses Grant did not burn during the U.S. Civil War because he admired the architecture so much. Rolleiflex 3.5E.|
|Crushing mill, Rte 3, Redwood, Mississippi, 2017. Rolleiflex 3.5E with 75mm Xenotar lens.|
Readers know I like film. One reason is I used film for 50 years and am comfortable with it. Another reason is it has a familiar look that we saw in prints, magazines, exhibits, and movies for decades, and it works well for recording urban decay. The self-professed "experts" on forums like Dpreview despise film because they think they are so superior with their new super digital capture devices. To each his own. Still, if you have aspirations to be a photographer, you owe it to yourself to use the traditional medium, learn how to calculate exposure manually, and contemplate each picture carefully. You need to think with film; no spray and pray that you might achieve a meaningful picture. And you cannot chimp (review the pictures on the camera's screen) as you see in tourist sites around the world. Read an interesting interview on The Phoblogger with the Richard Photo Lab about how film is appealing to more and more photographers of all ages and skill levels. Used film cameras are cheap and many emulsions are still available - just go do it.