Why Choose Film Photography?
I’m sure many of you are thinking, “Why bother with film? The world has gone digital, isn’t that better?” Many of you would be right! Camera technology has rapidly developed in the past few decades and has led to a more convenient and faster process with taking photos. So why even bother with film anymore? It’s time consuming, expensive, and hard to duplicate results. The answer lies with the technique itself. As our world speeds up seemingly by the day, we can be too quick to abandon those things that slow us down. Part of the beauty of film photography is the process. The delayed gratification. Each photo is the result of a measurable effort. Care must be given to ensure that each shot captures the intended subject perfectly. Time is what makes film more special. It’s special for the same reason that homemade apple pie tastes better than store-bought; the reason a homemade card is better than a bought one. The time it takes is what makes it special. In a way, film photography is a lot like a marriage. It takes time, care, and effort to achieve success. Not every picture is perfect, just like every marriage has its flaws, but for many, the imperfections are what makes it beautiful.
All sentiments aside, what ultimately matters is how the picture looks. Digital technologies and editing software has tried for years to imitate the look of certain film stocks. No process has ever achieved a perfect match. Using film will guarantee a unique look that can’t be imitated with an Instagram filter or Photoshop effect. Some films have more contrast, some have more saturated colors. Using film allows the photographer to select between different looks to achieve the perfect shot. With scanning technology, we can scan photo negatives to deliver high quality, high resolution digital files that you can post on social media or store on a flash drive. Shooting in larger formats also allows the photos to be enlarged without losing resolution.
I would encourage everybody to dust off the old film camera that’s been gathering dust in your attic (or borrow the grandparent’s old Canon or Pentax), head outside and explore the world around you. Take photos of things that interest you. Enjoy the process of slowing down and taking your time. Experience the joy of getting a roll of film back and seeing the results. Most importantly, share your photos with those in your life, experience film photography together.
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