I don’t think it comes as any surprise that I have a deep love for film.
When I started my journey into photography way back during my high school days, I started with film, and still, to this day, film has remained one of my favorite mediums to use to express my art.
I know there are many of you who have thought about shooting film yourself. I can’t blame you, the look and feel of film just can’t be beat.
But, you may have so many questions or haven’t quite been convinced to give it a try. So today, I thought I’d share my top five reason on why I think you should give film a shot! Pun totally intended.
1. Shooting Film Gets You Out of Your Comfort Zone
When you shoot film, you don’t get the opportunity to see what you’re shooting on the back of your camera. When I talk to people who are interested in shooting film, this is one of their biggest reasons why they are scared to try it. The inability to see your image in real time can be intimidating!
When I started shooting film, I had to push myself out of my comfort zone.
The inability to see my images on the back of my camera allowed me to push myself to try new things without immediately getting in my own way because of what I saw on the back of a camera.
It may seem scary at first, but trust me, pushing yourself out of your comfort zone will be tremendously changing for you as an artist and a photographer.
2. You Learn to Trust Your Own Artistic Eye
Just liked I said above, because you can’t rely on the back of your camera, you really have to understand exactly what you’re photographing. You have to understand every detail that comes with crafting the perfect image from lighting and location to aperture to shutter speed.
Shooting film isn’t willy nilly. I find that my best images come out when I have a game plan and I trust myself in the moment of shooting.
Instead of relying on the camera to take good photos, you start trusting more of what you see in real life.
I find that film documents the world and everything in it far more accurately, so relying on your own eyes allows you to figure out what angles, lighting, positions, locations, etc you feel truly resonate with you as an artist.
3. Shooting Film Lets You be More Hands-On
One of the fun parts of shooting film is being able to physically hold the film and load it into the camera. Some people might not find this fun, but, personally, I LOVE being hands-on with my work.
I love being able to tangibly be a part of the process, and I get that satisfaction when unrolling film and loading it into my cameras.
And if you want to take it a step farther and be even more hands on, try diving into the world of self-development.
Developing your own film will get your hands working in a blackout bag and bringing your images to life with chemicals and at home scanners! There’s something magical about being a part of the whole process and seeing your images come to life before your own eyes!
This is probably one of my favorite things about shooting film.
If you’re a photographer, you know all too well the long hours it takes to empty off your SD card, import your images onto your computer, and then edit them. If you’re doing weddings it can especially be daunting to go through thousands of images to create the perfect gallery for your clients.
When shooting film, you will have less images to cull and go through because you’re being intentional about what images you’re capturing.
You will also end up spending significantly less time editing images in post because each image is taken correctly in camera. When you send your film rolls to a film lab, you are essentially paying them to do most of the post process work.
Most labs will allow you to create a custom profile with them, so every time they scan in your negatives, they are making them as close to perfect as possible.
This means when your scans arrive in your inbox, you’re pretty much almost ready to send off the final gallery to your clients!
That doesn’t mean that some scans won’t need some work in Lightroom or Photoshop, but I can promise you the time you’ll spend on your film scans will be a fraction of the time you would spend when editing raw digital files!
5. More Capacity to Experiment and Have Fun
Just as digital shooters can change up their look with different presets and editing styles, film shooters also have the capability to change up their look and experiment with film stocks!
Each brand and type of film brings such a unique and distinctive look to your images.
Whether you’re looking for a grainy black and white like Ilford Delta 3200, the pastel softness of Fuji 400H, or the colorful and vibrant look of Kodak Gold 200, each film stock is amazing in its own way, and it can be so much fun to experiment!
There are even film stocks that have light leaks and scratches on them if you’re looking to get a little crazy! Whatever look you’re trying to achieve, experiment and have fun!
Well guys, what do you think? If you were on the fence about film are you convinced to give it a shot now? I sure hope so, I promise that once you start incorporating film into your life, you’ll be happy that you gave it a chance.
I do hope this article was helpful, and if you hadn’t guessed already, I love talking about film, so if you need any help or you have questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out! Now, go out there and start shooting!