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  1. #1

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    First visit to Bel Air Camera

    I've been wanting to check this place for over twenty years but never got around to it.

    While on a break yesterday I had the opportunity to check out Bel Air Camera in Westwood (L.A., UCLA area) for the first time and was very pleasantly surprised at the large darkroom section stocked with an impressive assortment of papers and chemistry It has to be about the largest darkroom dept. in L.A. with the exception, maybe, of Freestyle in Hollywood. Bel Air has a huge selection of used analog equipment also. Seems like most of the "big stores" in town have gotten out of the used market. This store, with a good number of employees on the selling floor really has an almost "retro" look and feel of a big camera store circa 1984! (Yes, they do sell all of the latest digital stuff-they just don't beat you over the head with it).

    When I mentioned that I was delighted to see that the store is still committed to analog photography the clerk said that UCLA students were its main analog customers. Not too surprising but good news nevertheless.


    If you're in the West L.A. area, you should check this store out.
    "A certain amount of contempt for the material employed to express an idea is indispensable to the purest realization of this idea." Man Ray

  2. #2
    SuzanneR's Avatar
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    I grew up in west LA, and got all my early film and paper there!!

    Last time I was in LA visiting my brother, I was low on 120 film... I was relieved, and quite pleased with their large selecton of b/w films they had in stock. Great store!!

  3. #3
    gr82bart's Avatar
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    It's a shame their website doesn't reflect that they still support film. I've been to LA a dozen times the past two years and the one reason I didn't bother with going to BelAir is this fact.

    I'll pay them a visit next time I'm out there. Thanks for the info.

    Regards, Art.
    Visit my website at www.ArtLiem.com
    or my online portfolios at APUG and ModelMayhem

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by gr82bart
    It's a shame their website doesn't reflect that they still support film. I've been to LA a dozen times the past two years and the one reason I didn't bother with going to BelAir is this fact.

    I'll pay them a visit next time I'm out there. Thanks for the info.

    Regards, Art.
    You're so right Bart! After I posted this thread I did go to the website and was surprised that not one mention is made of all the great analog stuff they actually carry. I did send them an email asking about it and this was the reply from Mr. Fred Silvers-

    "Jim,
    Thank you very much for your compliment regarding our darkroom inventory.
    Due to the amount of work necessary in the up-keep of the web versus the
    demand for the product, we don't include darkroom supplies.

    We'll be happy to help you with any of your darkroom needs."

    BEL AIR CAMERA

    I wonder if camera store managers worry that advertising or otherwise making it known that they carry "that old, obsolete, darkroom stuff" might make them look less hip, slick, and cool to the general buying public?

    Will the analog "contraband" soon be hidden in small back-rooms of our favorite camera stores?
    "A certain amount of contempt for the material employed to express an idea is indispensable to the purest realization of this idea." Man Ray



 

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