I love film photography, and I share Rasmus Rasmussen‘s top 5 reasons for loving it:
1. No Chimping
By not being able to check every picture, immediately after shooting it, you can focus on what you are about to photograph, rather than what you just shot. Less chimping means a sharper mind, and keeping a sharper mind will make for better images. Plus, if you chimp too much around actual living subjects, chances are they’ll lose patience and get tired or annoyed.
2. Frame Limit
Because you only have relatively few frames per roll of film, people tend to concentrate more on getting the shot. This is in sharp contrast to the digital mentality of clicking away and trying to sort through the results later. If you only have a limited number of shots, you’ll want each one to be as good, as it can possibly be.
3. Random Elements
This is especially true for those of us who enjoy playing with Holgas, Polaroids, box and toy cameras. With these, there’s always a chance that something strange and wonderful will happen to your picture, such as light leaks, vignetting, colors that are slightly off and so on. Very often, these random elements will add beauty and uniqueness to the final result.
4. True Black and White
It’s easy enough to desaturate a digital photo in post processing, but it’s really not comparable to shooting in black and white. I love film grain in B/W photos, but if it’s digitally added, it just doesn’t look right. But more importantly, if you know you are shooting in black and white, you can keep it in mind when composing your shot, to get the most out of any contrasts and shapes in the frame. Something that’s easy to forget if you’re shooting a digital color photo, which you may or may not convert later.
5. The Romantic Factor
Have you ever heard the sound a Hasselblad makes, when its curtain shutter goes off? It’s a wonderful, thick sound. How about the feel of a metal lever against your thumb, as you manually forward the film in an oldschool rangefinder camera? The slight resistance as it advances to the next frame. Ever had that doubt, that you might have positioned the number in the little red window a little too far to the right? These are all romantic reasons for loving film photography, and I am a sucker for them. There’s just something magical about these mechanical devices.
So there you have it. I’m sure there are more reasons to love film photography, just as there are reasons to love digital. This is just my personal top 5 list. Yours might look different, but you’ll only know if you pick up a camera and get to work.
Click on the links below to view my film Photo Albums on Facebook:
Photos taken with a 1969 produced (by Canon Japan), CANONET QL17 35mm Rangefinder.