Snippet #2 Slow Film

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I thought Kodak and the film industry had died… apparently not, they are still making good money with that little roll of plastic covered in chemicals.

And I just realised how slow people’s lives used to be. For example, I took a picture on the 3rd frame of this roll, then a week went by to finish the rest of the 33 frames so I can send it in for developing. Then I had to dropped it off to one of the city locations, only to learn that they would be closed for holiday until 9 Jan. Make it 5 days to process & scan the film. If all goes well I’m finally able to see the photo on 16 Jan. Then I can print it, post on Instagram and blah blah blah.

The whole process took me over 3 weeks to see one picture – I’d most likely forget what the picture is anyway. Now on smartphones it takes less than a second. That is a stunning revolution of speed.

There’s a lot of fanfare going around on productivity, new gadgets/apps, self-made millionaires, life hacks and in general that “must-optimise-every-living-second” and “get rich quick” attitude. I reckon new technologies are awesome, and they will keep coming. What worries me is that our minds are unconsciously being shaped and re-wired to catch up with the new speed, only to get easily frustrated if anything requires a little time, wait & effort.

How many times a day do we push the home button and check if we miss out on any notifications? Or refreshing the Facebook feed, only to get a little anxious if there’s nothing new? I get those.

This sounds like a “You kids get off my lawn!” type of blog. But there are quite a lot of things I enjoy doing slowly, and wouldn’t mind it costing some money, effort or time. We need some discomfort, that’s one inevitable element of living an authentic & meaningful life. Quality craftsmanship normally requires a lot of dedicated time, and that’s a very honourable act in an instantly gratified society.

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1 Comment

  1. adventuresinfilm79 says

    Well said, I think this is also why I have enjoyed processing my own negatives and scanning them at home. There is something there that is sacred to the process and taking the time to do things yourself. I’ve really enjoyed learning about film this past year.

    Liked by 1 person

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