As a photographer of the digital age, I’m used to shooting thousands of frames and worrying about nothing other than storage space. However, over he past couple of years, I’ve delved back into film photography and started to enjoy the magic of it. Film for me has been a limitation that has forced me to learn. By having only 36 frames, and being limited to the kind of film in the camera at the time, I have become a lot more discerning and selective in both my film and digital photography. This has had its positives and negatives. I have at times actually stopped myself from shooting a picture because it would be a waste of a frame. Recently I have fallen in love with a film that reminds me of my childhood family pictures: Kodak Gold GA.
My first roll came back and it just said “family pictures” all over it. I proceeded to pick up a brick of said film and have been shooting with it since. One of the best things is the price, and the freedom that it brings. With a regular roll of Velvia running 10,000 won or more, plus a 4,000 won in processing, and then some heavy saturation to boot, you have to be careful how you shoot it. TMAX is a particular favourite as well, but it’ just doesn’t spell spring sunsets to me, and costs almost as much as the Velvia. Being a pretty budget conscious kind of guy, I just can’t let my mind slip into the shoot. Kodak Gold sells for approximately 2,000 won, and the minilab charges 2,000 won to process it. It is a film you can shoot and worry about later. Now, I’m not suggesting this frees you from having to consider your photography. But, it does give you the freedom to try. Like the images above and below, guess the exposure and fire away. I know I have 43,000 stops of latitude in negative film anyway, so I’m sure we’ll get some interesting shots. The sun flare proved beautiful on Kodak Gold!
What this cheap film does is free your mind, allowing you to concentrate on moments more. What do you give away for this? Well, sharpness for one. This film isn’t all that sharp. Another thing is grain. Print 4×6 and you’ll be fine. Go any larger, or scan this stuff, and you’ll know about it. In some ways its pleasing, but don’t shoot this if you’re looking for a silky smooth finish like Provia or Velvia.