Why I shoot film.
I was in a 12 year relationship with digital photography when I became a film photographer. My husband is an extremely talented photographer and videographer. When we started dating he was obsessed with film. With his encouragement, I dug out my old film camera that my dad bought me in high school, bought some 35mm black and white film and began shooting.
Ramsey and Josh had already hired me to photograph their daughter’s newborn session when I asked if they were okay that I shot some images on film. Ramsey is a hair stylist and so creative so she was excited about the added artistic nature of film.
Of course their photos turned out so good but I found it was much harder to trust myself, my eye, after relying so heavily on the back of a camera for over a decade. But with every roll shot, every roll scanned, I became more and more confident.
And then the terror set in. I was shooting my first newborn session without a backup digital camera and I. Was. Terrified. The What If choir began to sing and the preacher of doubt shouted at me from his pulpit. What if Mom’s eyes are closed? What if Baby has one of those dramatic flail moments as I take the picture? What if? What if? What if?
Well, occasionally those things do happen. And I simply take the picture again. Film slows you down, giving you space and time to see the people in front of you. To see the light. To see the shadows. To see what’s be a part and fully present of what’s going on around you.
Film and light: a true romance.
What I also love about film is the very romantic relationship it shares with light. Film needs a lot of light and when it hits the film, it’s slow process. Sensual even. This helps with those creamy skin tones for any and everyone. Especially babies. And fine fine lines and wrinkles? Film naturally softens them. All of this cuts my editing time by two thirds. Which means you receive your photos back even sooner.
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On occasion I still shoot with my digital camera depending on the project. I look back on our 12 years together fondly. And then I grab some film and head out the door in search of all the glowing, magical light. Because I found my one true love.