I raise the camera to my face and I cock the shutter… I look at my subjects through the lens and I'm nervous to squeeze the shutter. Why am I nervous I ask myself? I'm nervous because every click of the shutter will cost me five dollars. Is this a dream? Is this my nightmare that I have not woken up from yet? Am I being punished for becoming an over shooter? Why would anybody photograph with film if the cost is so high?
Well this is not a dream, it is most definitely not a nightmare unless, all things go horribly wrong and you have to give your clients their money back because the film did not expose correctly therefore you have no ending product to give them which means the value of you as a photographer is now zero!
So what is this craze for photographers wanting to shoot film again? Truth be told, that all the above is actually true. Every time I squeeze the shutter that I'm photographing with film, does hold me accountable for many reasons including the cost. So why she would film when digital is so convenient? Film really does have its own place in the history of photography. After all it all started here. The thousands of cameras designed around film was a dynasty of its own. Back in the day film is just phone but the way the camera was manufactured made all the difference in the world of how the experience and the images were defined. Film has a subtlety to it that digital just cannot copy no matter what kind of filter you're using on your digital images. Yes some filters come very close but true photographers who respect the mastery of photographing with them Love the entire process and respects the outcome just as much.
So let's get back to my nightmare scenario for a moment. I have this beautiful bride in front of me with her handsome groom in the background looking at her and as I give them direction to what I want them to do, all of the aspects of creating a beautiful image through this camera Is running through my head. I respect the light all around me, I respect my client in front of me, and I respect the final image in my head for which I am striving to accomplish. I only clicked the shutter when I knew it was the right Moment to expose four. This is what I love about shooting film so much. I'm not shooting 10 images per idea or even minor thought, I'm only squeezing the shutter when it feels right. Don't photographers will always tell you that they respect the process so much more when they are being held accountable for photographing with film.
So as you're browsing Instagram and noticing photographers using film remember the process. I know it's easy to giggle and wonder why in the world would you shoot film it for moving forward with digital, but now you understand why. Every image you notice a photographer who photographs with film posts on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook or their own website, the sense of a little more respect is due to the creator. I am not downplaying digital by any means, I'm just saying that nightmare in the beginning of this blog posts is actually how we feel every time a roll of 30 frames is in our camera.
If you would like to play a little game and see how well do you actually hold yourself accountable for creating these beautiful images then do the following. Tell yourself your digital camera only has a roll of 220 medium format film in it which means you only have 30 frames to expose. I would love to see what you create and how did it affect you with such a limited amount of images to expose.
The following images are from a beautiful session which was captured with them and some really awesome old film cameras. Cheers to the New Year 2018!
Gear: Mamiya 645af ; Yashica square format; all natural light exposures.
"Photography is my life!"
New Orleans Fine Art Prints sold here!