Any camera would do if you’re thinking of a springtime woodlands shoot on film. But, if you want to narrow down your choices to 35mm SLR cameras, this quick video by Alex Hayes lets you choose between two Canon options: an AE-1 Program and a Pellix QL. The former is a classic and a firm favorite, while the latter is a rather unique option that may not be as heard of today. Both cameras were shot with the hugely popular Kodak Portra 400, so you might want to watch this video if you’re keen on trying these out.
Before taking us to his woodlands shoot, Hayes shares a bit about the two cameras and what could probably interest you in choosing one over the other (or both!). It’s a great primer for anyone who wants to see the kind of photos these cameras take when loaded with Kodak Portra 400. The woodlands also turned out to be a great location to show the versatility of the famed film.
Between the two film SLRs, Hayes is a big fan of the Canon AE-1 Program, which he found to be user-friendly, lightweight, and sturdy: a satisfying, all-around camera to use. This is a testament to its popularity to this day both with beginners and advanced film photographers alike.
Still, the Pellix QL could be an interesting addition to any film photographer’s arsenal or camera collection. As described by Hayes and Wikipedia, instead of a traditional moving mirror in SLR cameras, it has a semi-transparent, stationary pellicle reflex mirror. This splits the light to both the film and the viewfinder, so the viewfinder isn’t blocked off when you take a shot. It also holds the distinction of being the first Canon camera with TTL, having a built-in CdS exposure meter behind the pellicle mirror.
If you’re interested in either of the cameras, you can grab this Canon AE-1 Program with a 50mm f1.8 lens and a flash for $125, or this Canon Pellix QL with 50mm f1.4 lens with accessories and cases for $95.99.
Screenshot image from the video