Cambridge Camera Club

17:52 Thursday 19th January 2012
Drive BBC Radio Cambridgeshire

CHRIS MANN: A story now that may have taken many of you by surprise. Kodak, the company that invented the hand-held camera, has filed for bankruptcy protection in America. Although Kodak was one of the original inventors of digital photography, it failed to compete with the likes of Nikon and Canon, and now the digital camera business is on the decline, as people are moving to smartphones with built in cameras. Ann Miles, who runs the Cambridge Camera Club, joined me earlier to remember how Kodak was the camera of choice for amateurs. (TAPE)
ANN MILES: Well I started with my father, and was using a Kodak Brownie, probably.
CHRIS MANN: Goodness me.
ANN MILES: So that really does go .. not quite the 130 years, but a good way.
CHRIS MANN: Well Kodak of course invented the hand-held camera. How much have things moved on now? Can you believe the technology that exists now?
ANN MILES: No, it has changed dramatically in the last maybe ten to fifteen years ago slowly as the digital took over. But in the last two to three years it’s accelerated now, and very very few people are using film, in the amateur circles anyway.
CHRIS MANN: Is there reason still to use film?
ANN MILES: Yes. Some people still enjoy the actual involvement, taking the film, developing it. It’s still a very exciting thing that I don’t think you can reproduce by looking at your pictures in the computer, or on the television.
CHRIS MANN: Do you still have a dark room?
ANN MILES: No. I’ve still got my equipment, but I haven’t actually got it set up at the moment.
CHRIS MANN: And the joy was with putting the film in the bath and watching it appear.
CHRIS MANN: And hanging up to dry and so on. Just a memory for so many people. Do you think the digital age has changed things for photography in a good way, or a bad way?
ANN MILES: Good and bad I think. It’s certainly opened it up. We see this in our camera club. We actually have a waiting list as large as our membership. We can’t take all the people who would like to join. (LIVE)
CHRIS MANN: Talking .. to Ann Miles, who runs Cambridge Camera Club, who joined me to remember Kodak.