Life in Paris Things to Do & See

Film Photography in Paris

This year I decided to explore the world of film photography, Photo Argentique in French. I have always been interested in learning how to develop my own photos in a dark room, and play with the medium of film. In Paris, film photography is becoming popular again there are many places to take classes/workshops, buy film, and labs to develop them. The classes can be a bit expensive, but I found a place where they are pretty affordable at the Centre de Animation Rebeval in Belleville. The class is once a week for 3 hours, and the price is calculated in function of how much you make, I paid 370€ compared to 1,000€ at a photography school.

In the class you have access to all the material you need, you just have to buy your own film, and paper to print your photos. It wasn’t until I signed up that I realized film photography is a rather expensive hobby with each film costing around 5-6€, paper around 60€ for 100 sheets. But I truly love my class. Now I just prefer to spend money on a roll of film versus going out for coffee or out to eat. In any case here are some great addresses I have discovered so far to get film supplies, and labs to develop negatives.

Supplies (film, paper, chemicals)

Boulevard Beaumarchais

If you walk down Boulevard Beaumarchais anywhere between Republique and Bastille you will find pretty much everything you need related to film on this street. It was once called Boulevard de la Photo because there are tons and tons of photography shops on this street that sell used and new cameras, supplies, and do camera repairs. The places can be a little pricey, but you are sure to find everything you need on that street.

Photostock

This is where I get all my supplies, the prices are one of the cheapest in Paris and they have a large selection of papers, camera accessories, films and film paper.

Address: 126 Bd Sérurier, 75019 Paris

Labs

There is a whole new vocabulary to learn with film photography. It helps to know what you want to do at the lab. I go to the lab to develop my negatives, so I don’t have to do it myself. In that case when I drop my film off at the lab I usually do “développement seul”, and I do my own contact sheets and printing on my own. Here is some basic vocabulary for dropping your film at the lab

/Vocabulary/

Développement seul– negatives developed only (no contact sheet, no scan)

Développement et Scan– negatives developed plus a CD with a scanned copy of your photos

Développement et tirages de lecture– negatives developed plus small prints of each photo to better see what they look like.

*Note*: All the prices provided below are based on black and white film

Recommended Labs

1. Processus, is located near Pere Lachaise Cemetery and it was recommended by my photography teacher. They are good at developing film, as well as prints. The normal delay to get your film back is about 1 day.

Addresss:163 Rue de la Roquette, 75011 Paris

Prices: Development seul: 5.60€, Développement et Scan- 12€

 

2.Picto– I haven’t tried this lab yet but it was recommended by a friend in photography school, and it is located on the same street as Processus.

Address: 53 bis rue de la Roquette, 75011

 

3. Negatif Plus +, is a printing lab for small and large size prints, they also have a dedicated lab for film development and printing not too far from Gare de l’est.

Address: 108 Rue la Fayette, 75010 Paris

Price: Development seul: 6€, Développement et Scan- 11€,Développement et tirages de lecture-11€

 

4. PCP Photographie is a professional photography studio and lab located near Guy Moquet. It is a bit more expensive than the other labs but it is conveniently located if you live in the area.

Address: 258 rue Marcadet, 75018

Price: Développement seul-8.50€

 

What camera do you like to shoot with? What are some of your other film photography spots in Paris? 

 

 

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3 Comments

  • Reply
    John Morrow
    April 20, 2017 at 3:08 pm

    Maya,
    I wish I had seen all these before I came over. However, I found 2 a very good but different labs. La Chambre Noire @ 96 Rue Jean-Pierre Timbaud, 75011, is a one man shop that does many things. Wednesdays are for film processing. If you can get your film in by Tuesday afternoon process & contact will be ready by Thursday afternoon.
    Also, for the one stop shop including service in english, Arka Laboratoire Photographique @ 52 Rue Notre Dame des Champs, 75006 just off Le Jardin du Luxembourg. They have and can process all kinds of films, including black and white positive!
    Looking forward to exploring the 19th some more, John

  • Reply
    John Morrow
    April 20, 2017 at 4:46 pm

    Maya, one more thing. After Paris we went to Brussels and I needed to buy more film. Studio Baxton has a small film store and camera museum up front. However, I had to go into the man’s studio to run my credit card and my jaw fell open. He does wet plate photography, a process dating from the 1850’s, using view cameras built in the 1870s. The results are stunning, HUGE prints. I just happened to go in to buy film. Highly recommended if you go to Brussels.
    studiobaxton.com

    • Reply
      La Vie Locale
      May 21, 2017 at 6:36 pm

      Wow sounds cool!

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