If you’re a content creator then you’ll most likely already know that taking photos has never been easier. From high-spec cameras available at the tip of your fingers thanks to smartphones, to digital cameras with accessible price points – the opportunities for creative expression in the form of content creation are neverending. In fact, some might even say that almost everything can now be turned into content.
But, with the emergence of ’90s nostalgia influencers disposable film cameras are making a comeback. It shouldn’t come as a surprise either, because in an over-digitalized world where seemingly nothing is tangible the mere thought of having printed snaps can be extremely appealing.
If this is something that you’re interested in pursuing as a creative outlet then first things first: disposable film cameras can produce some really cool shots, even with minimal experience. You don’t need to be an expert!
You can start taking photos with little to no experience and build memories that stand the test of time!
In this article, we’re going to take a look at a few tips and tricks that you can implement immediately, and some of the best disposable film cameras available on the market today.
Get to Know Your Disposable Film Camera Before Getting Started
Here are a few things to keep in mind before heading out to your fave Instagrammable coffee spot to practice with your disposable camera.
There are two main types of disposable film cameras. Those that you’d throw away after one use, which are few and far between nowadays, and those that you don’t.
Single-use cameras are considered as such because the film is pre-loaded onto the camera, so once you’ve taken all of the images you’d submit the entire camera to a developing lab for them to process your photos.
Single-use disposable cameras normally come with an inbuilt flash and each roll has either 27, 15, or 39 photos. Usually, the number of images that can be taken will be on display on the packaging, so make sure to check.
The next type of disposable film camera is the type that’s shot to popularity over the last decade thanks to younger generations wanting to create immediate keepsakes
instead of only relying on digital versions. This type of camera doesn’t have an inbuilt film roll, which means that it’s not single-use. When you’ve finished taking all the images you’re able to remove the film role and send that to a developing lab.
For these cameras you’re able to purchase new rolls of film, making it an easier and more streamlined experience.
How To Get The Best Photos Using A Disposable Camera
Disposable film cameras are pretty easy to use, yet there can be a bit of a learning curve. You’ll want to keep a few of these simple tips in mind when first purchasing and practicing with a disposable camera because it can be extremely frustrating when images don’t turn out as planned. And, unlike with digital cameras where you can simply delete and retake a photo, with disposable cameras, you have one chance to get the perfect shot.
Why Distance Matters:
The best distance for shooting with a disposable camera is anywhere between 1 and 3 meters. Otherwise, you might end up with images that are out of focus and blurry. This is because the camera lens on disposable film cameras is often fixed.
Why Lighting Matters:
If you’ve ever had a roll of film developed then you’ll know that some images might be left out, missing, or just printed as blank images. This often happens with the photo taken doesn’t have enough lighting so the developing process becomes tricky.
To avoid running into this issue and missing out on pictures you’ll want to make sure you’re always shooting in areas that offer good lighting. This problem doesn’t really arise when taking exterior photos, although you will have to bear the sun’s position in mind. And, if you’re shooting pictures inside a venue or an area that’s not got great sources of lighting then the best thing you can do is use the camera’s flash. This brings us to our next point.
Why Using The Cameras Flash Matters:
The disposable cameras flash can come in handy especially when you’re opting to shoot indoors. Even if you think a room is well-lit, chances are it might not be enough to create the perfect picture you’re looking to achieve. When in doubt, use the flash.
The distance between the camera and the subject still needs to be between 1 to 3 meters when using the flash.
The Best Disposable Cameras For Beginners
So now that you know a little more about what disposable cameras are and how you can use them it’s time to take a look at some of the best disposable cameras on the market today.
For the sake of this article, we’ve chosen to highlight disposable cameras that aren’t single-use. We find that these can offer you more options, settings, and features, while at the same time creating a more streamlined experience because you can simply buy a new roll of film and snap away to your heart’s desire.
This disposable film camera is a great option for beginners. The Instax Mini by Fujifilm allows you to adjust the shutter speed and flash. Thanks to these features, the camera can be used for a variety of scenes, from landscapes to festivals, and even macros.
The camera also offers a feature that helps with long-exposure photos, called the bulb mode.
The film rolls can be a little expensive, but unlike the downsides we mentioned in our tips section, this disposable camera comes with the option to detect the lighting and brightness of a scene, meaning that you’ll lessen your chances of blank or unusable images.
This camera is an ideal option for beginners because it offers a dual-lens feature. You can even connect the OneStep+ to Bluetooth and gain access to advanced features, such as manual mode, light adjustments, and noise triggers.
The combination of all of these features can help even an amateur take great high-quality pictures.
The OneStep+ also offers great battery life, which is ideal if you’re planning to spend your days snapping pics.
The Nikon FM is an all-in-one winning option for beginners. It uses a 35mm film which is the best choice when you’re looking to achieve a vintage look. It’s an SLR camera offering enough settings for manual use and great results.
Because this is a manual camera you’ll need to learn how to adjust the lens manually. This can be a bit of a learning curve, but once mastered, the opportunities are endless.
Lastly, if you’re looking for a more serious investment piece that’s also beginner friendly, shoots 35mm, and offers a vintage feel to all pictures then the Olympus OM1 is the perfect camera for you.
The camera comes with a bunch of advanced settings that you can work up to and learn as you become more confident. It also contains a faster processor and sensor which helps it shoot with auto exposure and full focus.
Interestingly, the camera is also built with rust-preventing technology for the lightweight steel that’s used as a key material.
With everything fast becoming more digitalized the search for disposable cameras can become more difficult. Not to mention confusing!
We hope that the list of cameras we’ve presented in this article can help guide you in finding the best disposable film camera for your needs.
It’s always wise to invest in the right camera from the get-go, that way you can avoid feelings of regret and frustration later down the line.
Lastly, don’t forget to keep the tips we mentioned in mind when you’re snapping pics.