My real first foray into photography was in 2005, when I watched my step-dad take a Pentax K1000 out of the closet and hand it to me. This mechanical camera could be operated without a battery, was made almost entirely out of metal and had a solid weight to it — nothing like the flimsy plastic of today's cameras. He had used that old Pentax in years past for various projects, and it was perfect for my upcoming Photography I Black & White class.
I spent much of that class learning the very basics of how to control a camera, what f-stops, aperture, fix and developer were, and spent a more than a few nights huddled in the darkroom. Most of my shots were terrible — the rest acceptable at best. I remember being so frustrated upon reviewing my negatives that I'd barely captured anything acceptable for my assignments. After moving to Photo II Digital & Color, the faster process of shooting and evaluating digitally helped me grow leaps and bounds and just like that, I never went back to film.
Until November 2016.
A fellow photographer had gifted me a well-loved Nikon FM2, and I found myself with two newly purchased rolls of Kodak Tri-X 400 to put through it. I decided to push those two rolls to two stops in development for added grain and contrast in the final images. This added grain and contrast is a look I've found my black & white digital images getting closer to and I really wanted to see the results of "the real thing" and how it compared. Over Thanksgiving 2016 I dove head first into the all-manual focusing, metering and capturing of the my first film shots. After getting the roll developed and scanned by TheDarkroom.com; my comfort zone was successfully pushed and I was pretty pleased with the results.
I think I'll shoot more film.