Friday, March 07, 2014

a change of pace-- shooting with film

To make a bit of a Captain Obvious statement, I love digital photography. I love my gorgeous dslr, and over the past couple year I've also been very drawn to using my phone. I love the immediacy of it-- I can take a picture, edit it with filters, and share it right away. Instant gratification. I am not always a very patient person, so that aspect is very appealing to me. 

So it makes perfect sense that I now suddenly have an overwhelming desire to start shooting with film, right?

I can't remember when it was that I got my first digital camera, I think it was soon after graduating from college, but once I went digital I didn't give film a second glance. I dabbled some with an instax camera several years ago, but didn't really get super into it. When we got our first dslr I was so grateful for the ease of digital, being able to use the instant feedback and trial-and-error to figure out how to use the different settings. It wasn't until the past couple weeks that I even gave much thought to film... but I kept seeing other people's film photography (particularly Diyosa and Karen at Chookooloonks' Film Friday posts) and suddenly felt really drawn to them, and inspired to give film a try. 

I mentioned this to Jeremy and he didn't even hesitate before offering to lend me his Nikon N70. I immediately sought out a version of the camera manual online, and managed to find a roll of film at CVS, and shot the whole thing in a day just taking pictures around the house getting to know the camera (see above mention of impatience). It's funny how ingrained habits become, I kept reflexively glancing at the back of the camera after each shot. But as much as I love the instant gratification of digital, there's also something fun in having to wait to see what you got. Local options for developing leave something to be desired, so I'm trying out a lab in California and promptly mailed the roll out to them Monday afternoon. 

I was very pleasantly surprised to get an email from them Thursday afternoon that my digital scans were available for viewing. I was also pleasantly surprised by the results-- nothing breath-taking (most of them are relatively mundane, or repeats as I was trying to get a feel for the camera's settings and compare the results), but for a first go with inexpensive film I'm pretty happy. And I see what people mean about film just having a different feel to it

Sharing a couple of the pics of Sierra, because who doesn't like cat pictures? 

I have a couple rolls of nicer film now, that I'm gonna take my time with. This feels like a fun experiment and I'm excited to see what comes of it. One of my biggest challenges in photography is that I tend to rush-- something that comes from my primary subject being fast-moving kiddoes, where you don't have tons of time to sit and think about settings and framing, etc. And that is what it is, but that's tended to carry over into my shooting in general where I feel rushed and don't always take the time to really think about the shot and get it right the first time. Shooting with film should help me slow down and be more thoughtful about my picture taking. Also, lately I've been feeling a little fatigued by the computer-time aspect of digital photography-- I love taking the pictures, and having beautiful results, but sorting, deleting, keywording, and editing the photos can start to feel like a chore. So there's also something appealing, right now, about having to do the work in-camera and then just getting the prints (or digital scans) and that's that. (I realize there's also a lot one can do with film in processing the negatives, etc, but that's probably a ways down the line here...)

1 comment:

  1. I think it's great that you found something you're passionate about and enjoy doing. It's good to have hobbies ...that outlet into an artistic way to help us express ourselves (god, I sound like a hippie huh? haha) You're cat is a cutie ...keep it up :)



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