5 Reasons To Shoot Film

We're living in the age of digital. My 60D is a workhorse, it comes on every shoot. It's reliable, fast, accurate but I think there's more to the art of photography than pixel count and wifi picture transfer.

Shooting on film might not seem like an obvious choice in 2016, but it can offer you a lot of opportunities that can really help develop your photography skill base.

Here are 5 reason why you should be shooting film. 
 

#1. Film already looks great

Film looks great right out of the camera. A lot of people have spent a lot of time and money adjusting contrast, saturation and grain structure trying to help you get the best possible image.  So when you buy film you're making a post production choice because every film has a look. Fuji usually has a slightly greener, slightly colder tone; Portra captures skin tones beautifully.

Ever wonder where all of those Instagram filters came from? Mostly, from different types of film. We're all guilty of spending a lot of time editing and tweaking RAW files to make them stand out, and sometimes make them look like film. Why not cut to the chase and pick the film that matches what you're shooting best. Or don't and get some interesting results. 

 

#2: Slow Things Down

We're always rushing through life looking to simplify and speed up everything but it's important to stop and smell the roses, not just walk by with your camera on burst mode and fire off a set. When I started shooting with my 4x5 camera it really put the brakes on the way that I shoot. No longer was I able to walk around and snap freely knowing I could store hundreds of photos on the SD card in the camera. Now, I have room for six negatives and this causes me to really evaluate every aspect of the photo I take. Composition has to be spot on, exposure needs correct the fist time, I have one chance to get it right. This methodical approach will make anyone focus on nailing the basics whether you're shooting film or digital.

 

#3. You Can't Delete Negatives

How many of your images have you held in your hand? Put up to the light to see what you've created? There's something nice about tangible objects, holding something you've made. In this digital age it's easier then ever to delete an entire vacation or get a virus and have a whole lifetime of memories wiped away. When was the last time your Mom lost the album of your trip to the Grand Canyon? Probably never, it's on a self in a closet. Unless you’re incredibly organized you probably can't find an image you took 10 years ago.

 


#4. Film Cameras Are Cheap

New digital cameras can cost thousands of dollars and that's not including lenses. Even used DSLRs can run you hundreds. When you consider a 35mm SLR can be had for pennies compared to their full frame DSLR equivalent, it's a no brainier. If you're just starting out in photography or looking for a camera to spice up your routine, a film camera can really fill the gap. If you've ever wanted to shoot digital medium format you'll need to take out a $30,000 loan to grab a decent body or you could grab a Hasselblad 500 for 700 bucks.

 

#5. Surprise!

Instant gratification isn't all  it's cracked up to be. Having to wait a week to see what you've captured really builds a sense of excitement and allows you to look at your photos with fresh eyes. It's really fun to shoot a roll of film, and have no idea what you're going to come out with.

I can talk all day about the joys of shooting with film, but you need to load a roll for yourself to really know what everone is talking about.