Let's Talk Wedding Film Photography For a Few Minutes

There are a few blogs I enjoy reading about film photography one of those is from Richard Photo Lab. It's not only fun for me to read through film photography blogs but it's also educational - it helps me understand film on a deeper level. So after years of learning, reading, and shooting weddings on film here is a brief observation I can share about film photography. I also figured this is a good time for a small blog about film photography since Emily and I are preparing for a wedding season filled with film photography.

Let's get to it, one of the alluring aspects of film is its unpredictability. The imperfections, the grain, the unexpected hues—these contribute to the unique character of each photograph. As if every roll of film tells its own story, carrying the imprint of the photographer's vision and the alchemy of the developing process.

Film photography is a dance between light and chemistry. All the light allowed into the lens becomes a chemical reaction as soon as the shutter button is pressed.

Each frame is a calculated composition, a deliberate choice capturing a moment in time. Unlike the instantaneous feedback of digital, film demands patience, precision, and anticipation. Every click of the shutter holds weight.

I've notice film photography can make you slow down and I've found it to be a good thing for both the photographer and couple. It makes the photographer look at the frame a few times before clicking the shutter button. I don't mean posing you in one place until capturing the perfect frame. Contrary, what I mean is taking a moment to find the perfect frame wherever you are.

Documentary wedding photography is about being in the right place at the right time. This is one of those things that you can only learn with experience and specially with film photography. knowing where to be with the film camera set with the appropriate settings ready to document is extremely technical and comes with time. If you're a photographer who wants to learn more about film my advice is to read blogs from well known film labs, and reach out to wedding film photographers with experience, and particle with your own film camera in different settings.

Coming from working as a digital tech, I have been lucky enough to explore with different camera sensors such as Canon, Fuji, Leica, Sony, Nikon, Phase One, and Hasselblad to name a few and these are amazing complex systems that create beautiful imagery. It's fun for me to compare color, tones, depth of field and more. I have to say Fuji is one of my favorite digital files but the auto focus is not there yet for wedding documentary photography. I have also explored with film presets that I think are beautiful but it doesn't come with imperfections you can only get with film. I think these digital images are a great complement to the story a roll of film tells like the small scanning imperfections or part of the actual film on the photo, not the one you buy from an App Store. I love how technology evolves yet film photography stands resolute and preserving an art form that is timeless and will always continue to inspire. With that, cheers to more film in 2024.

Juan and Emily are wedding photographers in Asheville documenting moments between you and the people you love on film & digital.