Film photography? Digital age leaves it in the dust

As technology continues to speed ahead, we've seen many products and services go the way of the dinosaur -- phone books, cassette tapes, typewriters and now maybe film photography.

Eastman Kodak Company has been preparing for bankruptcy in the near future in case it's ongoing efforts to sell patents fall through. For years, the company has struggled to keep up as technology, digital cameras and online photo sharing zoomed forward.

"Really, they're the only other company besides Fuji that's still making colored film," said local commercial advertising photographer, Shannon Richardson. "They can't rely on what they used to be, a strictly film-based company."

Richardson said even though he still uses film, for the average consumer, the digital world has taken over.

"With digital you can shoot as many pictures are you want and you can flip through and see what you have but with film you only have so many shots," Richardson explained.

Several Amarillo locals seemed to be of the digital persuasion as well.

"I know on my little camera, they're all digital and it takes great pictures," said long time resident of Amarillo, Harry Beck. "It's easy to take them because they're real quick and you don't have to keep changing film."

"It's nice being able to actually get to see the pictures as you take them and don't have to wait days to see how they turned out," added Canyon local, Taren Lee.

In addition, many of those pictures people are taking aren't getting saved in photo albums anymore. They're being stored in cyberspace.

"I think a lot of it has moved online. People share stuff on Facebook, people put stuff on Flikr or they have a blog or whatever," said Richardson. "Rather than having prints many people are going online to some place like Blurb and creating your own photo album or book."

"I just got my engagement pictures done and we got everything online," added Lee.

But despite leaving "film" in the dust, most agreed there's still something about having pictures that you can hold...even if you did print them out yourself.

It's always going to be a good thing to have them printed and be able to have them in a wedding book or a baby book because those are memories that last a lifetime," said Amarillo resident Abby Stecklein. "If you lost that little camera card or something, those could be lost forever."

Even though it's been overlooked, Richardson feels film photography will never die completely.

"Will film still be here? I think so," Richardson said with hope. "I don't think it's going to go away totally."