I've recently got into film photography. If you ask me why I'd probably tell you this. I tend to get obsessed with things and when I start, I can't stop. I used to take my digital camera everywhere I went and take hundreds of photos every time I left the house. After a while, I realised that I wasn't actually experiencing the fun I should have been having because I was too focused on capturing photographs of it. So what does this have to do with film photography? Well, everything really.
Firstly, film is expensive. A roll of film with 36 exposures costs about €9 so I can't go around shooting hundreds of photos or I'll go broke.
Secondly, film slows you down. On a digital camera, you can snap away continuously at random and hope you'll get a few nice shots. And most of the time you've taken so many photos that you couldn't even be bothered to go through them all. They just end up sitting on your hard drive gathering virtual dust. With film, you have to slow down, find the correct exposure, think about your framing, think about light direction and quality of light and know that you only have one or two chances at capturing each shot. It's almost therapeutic.
Thirdly, film is humbling. It's easy to convince yourself that you're a decent photographer when you select your best 5 photos out of 5 hundred, you edit them in Lightroom or VSCO and pat yourself on the back. Maybe it's just me but I found some dissatisfaction in the whole thing. But when you only get 36 shots a roll and you send them off to the processing lab, you get a nervous excitement. And when they send you the scans and if even just a few of them are great shots, it's like opening presents on Christmas day. I can't explain it better than that. You'll just have to try it yourself.
Finally, there's just something about film. If you know you know. I put it down to its flaws. The grain, the light leaks, the slightly missed focus. When you shoot digital, you do your best to eliminate these because you feel you have to. And then you go back into VSCO and try and put that film look back into it. It's just inauthentic. It's the natural, real flaws in film photography that gives it its magic I think.
So those are my reasons for shooting film and I highly suggest you give it a go. If it's not for you that's totally fine. But give it a shot (no pun intended) and you might never look back.
I don't consider myself a great photographer but check out some of my film photographs below. Also, we'd love to see some of your first film photos so please tag us on Instagram so we can check them out.
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