How to start analog photography

I took film photos as a child. Back then, vending machines sold disposable cameras. Film photography is beautiful because you can’t predict how it will appear and it has many factors that might damage your images, but it also renders naturally with chemical and light reactions, locking that moment on the negatives. Boutique Film will give you some key tips for starting out in analog photography.

What’s analog photography? 

Once you start clicking, the film is exposed. Light affects the film’s chemicals to create a picture. Analog means film. 

Film photography as a hobby? 

I recommend starting with a 35mm camera because it’s the most prevalent format and offers many tools. These are generally 35mm film cameras with attached or modular (changeable) lenses and automatic or manual modes. Look for one having “AE” or “A” automatic mode to preview film pictures. 

If size concerns, a compact point-and-shoot camera handles most of the work for you, including automated exposures and focusing. 

Camera types 

Single lens reflex (SLR) and rangefinder film cameras are popular. There’s no right or wrong way to choose between these well-designed cameras. 

I use a rangefinder camera daily because I prefer 35mm and 50mm focal lengths, it’s tiny, and the shutter sound is so faint that I’m undetectable while urban street photography. When doing creative photographs, I search for texture and nuances. 105mm tele lenses on my Nikon F3P. SLR cameras are easier to focus since you receive what you see, which is vital for precise photos. 

Try as Many Film Stocks as Possible Film photography is like a candy store for novices. The film you pick, like a filter or preset, will decide the hue of your acquired photographs, as such aspects heavily impact film images. Each film stock has strengths and weaknesses. This post contains negatives. 

Prime lenses 

I’d recommend starting with a fixed-focal-length lens. Prime lenses can’t focus or zoom. 35mm or 50mm lenses are excellent for manual 35mm film cameras. Fixed lenses might help you get started with zoom lenses. 


A thin flexible strip of plastic or other material covered with light-sensitive emulsion is an analog camera’s medium. The film is black-and-white and colored. 

We recommend starting with color print (sometimes called color negative) film because it’s inexpensive and easy to understand. 

Kodak Color plus 200 is affordable and offers vintage-looking photos. Kodak Ultramax 400 is a high-speed film that produces warm images. Fuji C200 is a good choice if you enjoy Fujifilm’s green hue. 

Color slide film demands ideal exposure if you’re new to film photography. Some cameras set the film speed automatically, but others don’t. 

Make sure ISO/ASA is adjusted correctly and don’t modify the speed once set; it’s not a digital camera. Changing ISO results in varied exposures since the film developer only recognizes ONE speed. 

Various Film Types

Positive, color negatives, and black-and-white negatives are the three types of film. I’ll describe each film kind afterwards. You must recall how they behave with color, ISO, dynamic range, grain, and sharpness. I appreciate most films, but I really love black-and-white film’s enchantment.

Film photography doesn’t allow ISO or black-and-white conversion. So, having a second camera body that’s compatible with your first is a fantastic idea. Having a second camera body protects you from clouds (if you have one with an ISO of 100 and the other with 400) and gives you additional creative options for stunning images.