Film is Alive!!
In a world of digital, where everything is instant and urgent, film is finding its place among people that appreciate the art of slowing things down. In recent times we have seen a revival of classic traditions and slower lifestyle choices – vinyl has made a huge comeback for appreciating timeless music, the slow eating movement is popular among people that want to escape their screens and savour their gatherings with good food. Probably one of the biggest returns to a classic medium is film photography.
The wedding industry has definitely embraced the nostalgic look and feel of film. With it’s pastel tones and beautiful colour palette, film is not just some quirky fad that appeals to people because it’s trendy. Digital shooters are desperate for their pictures to look like film but it is a look that is currently unique to film users only. There is a Facebook group called ‘Looks Like Film’ which is dedicated to showcasing photographers work that looks like film and whilst there is some fantastic work on there, most of the work featured definitely does not do what it says on the tin!
The look of film is unique and what does it have in common with couples? So are they!
A wedding day is a one off celebration of everything unique to two people and two families. It’s a day like no other and for most people a once in a lifetime experience. It’s a time when social media takes a back seat and people live in the moment. What better way to capture it then on the timeless medium of film.
So lets talk about the physical difference between film and digital.
It has a softness to it that simply looks beautiful. A bit like the crackles on a record, film is not as sharp as digital. It has a lack of quality that makes it perfect for photographing people. digital has reached a stage now where every flaw and every wrinkle is absolutely pin sharp but with film there is a natural softness. Just by it’s very nature it is more flattering.
Imperfection is beautiful!
Next is the colour! Probably THE most important aspect of shooting film.
We use several different cameras but the main workhorse is our Hasselblad H2 which is a medium format 645 camera. It is the Rolls Royce of medium format and Hasselblad has always been considered the best cameras in the world.
With this camera coupled with either Fuji or Kodak colour film just produces the most stunning colours. Skin tones look exactly how they should look (no pink, purple or orange skin tones with film) and the overall colour palette just looks beautiful.
Ok so Technical alert!!!
Film has an enormous latitude when it comes to exposure. A piece of film reacts to light very differently to how a digital sensor does. If you over expose on digital then that’s it, the detail is gone! Modern digital camera’s shooting RAW files are hugely versatile when it comes to retrieving information from a badly exposed image but with film it is not a problem. With Kodak Portra 400 you can over expose by unto 8 stops and it’ll still show detail in the highlights.
Why is this important?
Well here in the UK we shoot most of our pictures in the afternoon when the sun is at it’s highest. The light is massively contrasty and so bright that digital struggles to cope with the huge range between highlight an shadow. For film this is where it thrives.
Ok so let’s talk Black & White.
Black and white film is where things get truly artisan. To get digital to look like film, black and white is probably the easiest to replicate but still once again the real deal just cannot be beat! There is one main reason Grain.
Grain is everything to the way that film is structured. It is the intangible beauty that makes black and film photography so timeless. When you look back on classic photos from our history – John & Jackie Kennedy’s wedding pictures, Princess Diana by Mario Testino it is the grain and the movement and the imperfections that make the imperfect so absolutely perfect.
Freedom by being limited!
There are SD cards that are now 128Gb. I don’t know how many thousand images that would capture but I do know that 1 roll of 120 film is 16 frames! That’s right 16!
We realised very early on that time is the thing we value above all else and time on a wedding day is crucial. With film we’re not taking our couples away for 40 minutes or an hour+ for photos because we don’t need it!
We are carefully considering each and every frame. With our experience we know how to give direction that will relax you and allow us to get the images that matter. How long do we need??
10 minutes during the day and 10 minutes at sunset is all we need. Just several rolls of film to get fabulous images and giving you all the time you need to enjoy your wedding day.
With a limited number of shots comes a space to be more artful. to consider each image before clicking the shutter. To allow time and space for you both to ease into being in front of the camera.
There are a ton of reasons why we shoot film but lastly one other factor…
It’s just so damn cool!
Like a 1970 Fender Rhodes electric piano, Like an original Eames Chair, like a vinyl copy Sgt Peppers – film just has the X Factor!
Everybody has something in their lives that is 100% first class. Even if they were billionaires this one thing would still have huge value to them. That is what film is…
Luxury, Authentic, Timeless, Beautiful…
Contact us right now to discuss your very special wedding plans. Email HERE