A Film Story

For those of us who began our photographic journey with film, this one is for you.  Despite the preponderance of all things digital, some of us, including myself still like to shoot film.  Some still only shoot film, but I’m sure that even those individuals may have a digital point and shoot lying around somewhere.  Film users like to wax eloquently about the grain they get when they shoot certain film types.  Be it Tri-X or Illford HP-5.  The colors with film just seem to be so different from digital files we may explain to the digitaliari.  But, in reality, there are some really good software programs that can take a digital image and give us that film essence we all like to see now and then.  I shoot film for another reason.  It slows me down.  It makes me work for an image a little harder than a digital image does.  With film, I’m never quite sure what I’ll get once it comes back from the developer.  I use to develop all of my black and whites, a long time ago.  Never developed color film.  Shooting film does make you take your time.  You can’t shoot it as fast as a digital camera, and you have a more finite limitation in the number of images you can shoot with a roll of film.  It makes you savor the moment once you press that shutter and hear that mechanical click.  Even focusing is different.  Remember split screen focusing?  Not the new 91- point lightning fast auto focusing found on today’s higher end digital dslr’s.  Film isn’t for everyone, but if you want to experience photography from a completely different angle, shoot film.  Finding a used film camera is very easy.  The cost to get into film isn’t as great as it may seem to be.  You may even be able to use some of your lenses with an old film camera.  I shoot with a Nikon F2, my first camera, and use pretty much all of my Nikon glass, with the exception of the newer afs lenses.  I don’t shoot a lot of film, but once in a while I do because I just like too.  One of the issues you may face with film is finding somewhere to get it developed.  I was disappointed when CVS dropped their developing service.  I use to use them on the road.  By me, there is still an independent camera store, Phototronics that develops color and black and white.  B&H cells film mailers from A&I out of California, and if you look in the back of Shutterbug magazine they have a bunch of ads highlighting film developers around the U.S.  The nice thing with film is that you can scan the negatives and prints and use those images in your digital workflow.  So for those of us in the digital world you will still be able to manipulate your film images with any of your favorite software programs.  Like the old Chex cereal commercials use to say,  “try it you might like it.”

Leave a Comment

May 25, 2013 by John Miller

Very nice blog entry about using film! You know there’s just something about film that’s lost on today’s digital world.

I still like film, don’t shoot it as much as I would like but somedays I think I should just forget about using digital hop on the film only bandwagon!

A great little read!


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