More Photos from a 60-year-old Camera: Relearning Analog Photography

The second roll of film from our vintage 1952-ish Agfa Billy came out much better than the previous roll. Digital cameras have been around long enough now that we’ve forgotten the lost art of taking analog photos. Note to self: no place to attach “flash cubes”? then maximize the amount of natural light for the photos. Molly took these photos, and here are a couple of the best:


This one has that “old-style” feel to it:  a bit grainy, colors somewhat muted, indistinct clouds…

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The photo above is Molly’s favorite on the roll, and here’s where a strange problem started cropping up – notice the colors and dots near the top of the photo.  According to online discussion, this seems to come up a lot, and is often blamed on expired or poor quality (Chinese) film.  Yet this film is no different than the previous roll.  Another option suggested was bleed-through of external light, either from loading the film in strong sunlight, and letting the roll loosen so light gets into the roll.  Or light gets in through the little red window on the back of the camera, exposure by exposure.  Or poor quality ink from the backing paper below the film gets on the film.  Again, no problem on the other rolls, so I think it was a loading issue.   Some people like the effect, but I think I’ll clean it up with photoshop.

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In the distance is an oil rig in for maintenance at the port of Walvis Bay, Namibia.

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In the distance, flamingos.  And again the bleed-through problem.  I’ll have to ask the guy to give me the backing paper next time, to see how it’s possible to have two different numbers, facing different directions.

000007 (2)No idea what happened here.  An error unloading the film, letting light in?

The film developers didn’t scan all 8 photos, thinking we wouldn’t want the ones that are messed up.  At this point we need all the clues we can get to figure out how to make this “old tech” work properly!


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