Journeying Back to Youth: Rediscovering Emotions Through a Film Camera

I will never forget the day I purchased my first digital camera—a used Nikon D50. With a little help from my parents, I was able to acquire this camera when I was just 14 years old. Little did I know then the profound impact it would have on my life and the person it would help shape me into. One particular memory stands out vividly in my mind—the exhilaration I felt as I held the camera for the first time and captured my initial photos amidst the vibrant and colorful Mahane Yehuda market in Jerusalem. Fueled by my passion for photography and an insatiable thirst for discovery, all I wanted was to capture stunning images and absorb as much knowledge as possible.

But why am I reminiscing about my first digital camera when the title of this anecdote is “Film Camera”? In other words, an analog device devoid of screens, featuring a manual winder.

You see, during my younger years, I never had the opportunity to experiment with or learn the intricacies of a film camera, except for a few occasional shots I took using my parents’ ever-changing “point and shoot” cameras during family vacations. It seemed I was born in an era too late to fully embrace the world of film photography. This realization motivated me to purchase my first used film camera. As an established professional photographer, I discovered a renewed passion for traditional film-based photography. The curiosity and excitement I experienced while delving into film photography transported me back to my 14-year-old self—holding my first digital camera, brimming with enthusiasm.

Often times, I deliberately restricted myself to my humble Nikon SLR as my sole equipment. I embraced the challenge of limited shots and the anticipation that came with waiting for negatives to develop, eager for that first glimpse of the captured images. Each photograph taken on my film camera possesses an extraordinary power, depth, and a story of its own.

These moments captured on film always compel me to pause, if only for an extra fleeting second, transporting me back to a time when I was a raw and unrefined 14-year-old, armed with a camera, ready to conquer the world.