Film: A love affair
When I was younger, I loved to shoot film. I didn't realize then, however, that I would love it so much more when I got older. It's kind of ironic that I shot film back then but with the times becoming more technologically advanced I thought, "wow I need to invest in a nice digital camera", and now I shoot even more film than ever before. It was the era of DSLR's and I wanted something nice, it's true. However, a year or so after getting my DSLR, I kind of missed the unexpected feeling you get when you run through a roll of film so I picked up the bad habit again.
With film, you are more involved in each photo you take. It's more of an intimate relationship as I like to describe it. You don't get trigger happy cause, well, you can't! It's too expensive, especially now to be that way. You need to compose every shot, regard every angle, be aware of lighting, remember to meter, and be able to focus on the tip of a needle within a few seconds. No auto here folks, at least not many. And if you are like me, the older the camera, the better the challenge.
It wasn't until a few years ago that I started getting into street photography and for myself, shooting street photography on film is just so romantic. Street photography always fascinated me and I think it was more because of the simple fact that you are capturing history. You don't know it, but you are.
Shooting film is like being in love. You nurture your shots, thinking about everything you do before you push the shutter. You take extreme care of your film, especially if you develop it yourself. Developing takes dedication, patience, and involves your hands, you treat it gently. It is your love.
I love shooting digital, don't get me wrong, it's just the process and the unknown that really intrigues me about film, I suppose. You don't know if something wrong could happen with your film. You also don't know if you got the shot or not sometimes. And if you are like me, you forget what's on certain rolls until you develop them. (I really need to start marking my rolls, it can be a pain) But to me, I find that fun! It's like a mini surprise every time.
Some of my favorite photographs that I have ever produced were taken on film. When I heard about The Dark Room Lab doing a Street Photography contest, I got butterflies in my stomach. I finally felt like I could just go wild and share all of these street photographs that I had. Sometimes I feel like people don't really appreciate or enjoy street photography as much anymore but to me, it's really my favorite genre of photography.
I love how you can go to the same places over and over again yet something will always be different about it. If you don't capture it there while it's living, then the moment has passed. The next day will be a new one, and something different will be happening on that exact same street. Erika and I made it a point to contribute as much of our street content as we could. I was also ecstatic cause her and I hadn't gone into the city to shoot like we used to in a long time. This was the perfect excuse to get back out and burn some rolls.
Any time I visit a new city or go back home to visit, I love hitting up the downtown or heavily populated areas. That's where you see the most life. The more people the better. Everyone instantly becomes a subject.
The colors in film are so sought out that there are companies making presets to give you the film aesthetic. Why do you think that is? I'll tell you why... Cause film is gorgeous! It's organic!
I also feel like film really depicts the image as you saw it with your own eyes. It's a tangible nostalgic piece of your memory.
These days I go to thrift stores, pawn shops, or even garage sales to find some interesting film cameras. I also like being able to find a decent camera for $5.00 that produces top quality images. Would you believe me if I told you a camera I got for $5.00 took some of these photos?
Although many say that film is a dying art, I have faith that this current surge in film photography is here to stay. It is a known fact that most people who still shoot film are under the age of 25. I am a firm believer that we will continue to keep film alive, one way or another.