July 27, 2011

First steps on film

Film photography isn’t my thing. No, really! I’m through and through a digital-nerd. I mean… I got a PlayStation 3 standing next to my big HD-TV and below them there is a Nintendo Wii, preventing all the Video games from falling out of the rack. And just ‘cause we’re talking about it: I really need to buy the Xbox 360 now to play all the new chapters of the Halo series. Proof Nr. 2: My Bag. If you look in there, you’ll find a Nintendo 3Ds, an iPhone and an iPad… Yeap, through and through a digital Nerd. There’s nothing bad about it, isn’t it? The advantages are dominating clearly, beside the possiblity to check all photos on the display and use LiveView.

But some people don’t seem to get that fact. My friend Alex is even speaking about selling his digital SLR and concentrating only on film. If I look through my Flickr-contacts, I see more and more film-photography each day. And even some of my favourite photographers bought a film-camera some time ago (or longer ago!). For example Johnny Patience, Hien, Anette Phersson, Parker Fitzgerald and even Siebe!

Alright, let’s start again: “Film photography isn’t my thing”. But maybe I could broden my mind if I take a look at it and try to understand why all are falling for film. Sometimes you have to think out of the box to exceed yourself. Alex is raving about it since years anyhow and I have to admit that I really like the results, especially the colors. The other mentioned photographers are also able to create really nice photos with a very intensive charm on film.

So let’s make some research on ebay, what I have to pay for a used Canon SLR, anyhow I want to use my lenses on this camera. What? Only 20€, with shipping included for a EOS 3000N? Immediate purchase! Ok, but how can i get these photos on my pc now? After doing some research again, i ordered a scanner to scan the negatives. On now the most important question: Which film? If I’m honest, this never really was a hard questions for me. From the beginning on, I knew that I wanted to try the Kodak Portra 400 NC because nearly all of the mentioned photographers are achieving very nice color results with it. I love this bright and soft low-contrast look. So after a few days, all these things already arrived.

After recieving a film-photography crash-course from Alex, I packed my equipment for doing a little nature-shooting outside. I didn’t expect it but taking photos with a film-camera feels very different from a digital SLR. The adjustment possibilities are very rare, I can’t change the ISO and I only have three AF-fields, which isn’t too bad because manual focusing is very easy with this camera. But even the sound, when you push the shutter is pretty different and “feels” very different too. It’s a big handicap for me that I don’t have a display to check the photos and I needed some time until I got used to that fact. I always looked at the back of the camera and thought “something’s wrong here”.

But somehow I made it to get my first roll full with photos and develop them. I have to say: Film photography is something to fall for. It has more soul than digital photography and you feel closer to the single photos than you do on the flood of photos on a SD-Card. But anyway I will never be a film-only photographer. It will be a nice “just for fun”-thing for me and a nice balance for my digital-nerd being!

Most of the pictures are processed very slightly. I touched the colors and contrast and gave them a warmer look. On some of the photos I couldn’t keep my hands off photoshop 😉

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3 comments on “First steps on film”

  1. The picture instantly remind me of the likes you numbered in your post. Especially Siebe is shining through. His latest film pictures are breathtaking to say the least. Film shooting is not yet an option for me. Let's say it that way.. I want to be in total control of the digital pendant first, before I start to shoot the expensive film. 😉

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