Up to this point, most of my blog posts have revolved around my work. Occasionally, I'll post a website, artist or photographic information that I come across which intrigues me. I want to use this post specifically for that reason; and to show that good customer service does exist in today's world of bigger than life corporations that only care about the bottom line.
As most of you know, I've recently been experimenting with film photography. I picked up my first film camera at my father-in-law's estate sale. It was a Canon AE-1P; unfortunately, it was beyond repair and I was unable to use it. It now has a prevalent position on our bookshelf. The shop I took it to actually had a used AE-1P for sale and I purchased it. I put two rolls of film through it; it was a bit daunting at first. Switching back and forth from digital to film is not easy and I hadn't realized the full beauty of film until this year. A few things fell into place that helped pave the way for me to embrace the analog nature of photography. I received my first Lomography camera, a Holga, as a wedding present. My wife gave me a Lomography Fisheye 2 camera for Christmas and a Polaroid SX-70 for my birthday. I also stumbled upon a great podcast; the Film Photography Podcast.
The Film Photography Podcast (FPP) is hosted by Michael Raso, John Fedele and Mat Marrash. These men love film photography and they bring that spirit to their podcasts. There is something so unique about shooting film; it's really hard to explain unless you've experienced it. This podcast has opened my eyes to the massive world of photography that I've yet to explore. I've got a running list of books and magazines that they've referenced, I've found some great specialty labs for developing, I've learned about so many different styles of cameras, and I've opened up my work to more individuals than I have ever before. Most importantly, I've been exposed to a community of great people that love photography as much as I do and just how much knowledge and experimentation that is waiting to be tapped in to.
In addition to their podcast, the FPP gang runs a blog, a YouTube channel, a Flickr group and a store. To show support for their small operation, I purchased a few packs of Fuji 100C and Fuji 3000B pack film for my Polaroid 440 Land Camera. I received the box in the mail today; it was missing the film. There were two stamps on the box that stated the USPS received the box in damaged condition and they received it without contents. This type of incident blows my mind! How can a perfectly packaged box just be grossly mishandled and passed onto the final destination with the contents lost or stolen? You would think this would've raised a red flag somewhere. Well, apparently it didn't, and I ended up with an empty box. I specifically purchased this film for a photo shoot that I have scheduled for this weekend. I emailed the FPP store and in less than an hour, I received an extremely amazing reply from Michael Raso. He apologized for the USPS mishap and reshipped my film via Priority Mail. While I hope that I receive the film before I leave for my trip, it really didn't matter after I read Michael's email. The level of customer service he demonstrated is outstanding. The FPP is a small operation, but they care about their customers. They know that every one of their customers, or listeners for that matter, is a huge fan of film photography and they are simply treating each one like they would want to be treated. Michael Raso doesn't know me personally; yet, he took the time out of his busy day to write a personal response and send another package. I wish all businesses would work in this manner; the world would definitely be a better place.
I hope I can attend an FPP meet up and meet Michael and the rest of the FPP gang. You've helped open up a whole new aspect of photography for me and I appreciate that. If anyone reading this blog is into film photography, thinking about getting into film photography or used to shoot film and wants to get back into doing it, I highly recommend FPP.
Here's the link: Film Photography Podcast
Thanks again Michael and the FPP gang!