My 3 Reasons For Using Film On Your Wedding Day

A question I sometimes get is "Why do you use film?" In this day and age of iPads, SD cards and digital SLRs and phone cameras, it is a bit odd for someone to keep using film. 

While there are a multitude of reasons that I still continue to use film to this day, I'll list my 3 biggest reasons and especially how it applies to a wedding day. It should be noted that I still bring a digital SLR with me for certain uses but a majority of images I shoot (if not all) are on film.

Reason #1: The Film Look
I love the look of film. Love it. There's just something about it. The images I'm able to get using film feel very organic. I personally use a 35mm Leica camera with black and white film to achieve a certain look. The "skin-tone-focused" films have amazing color and they are my "go to" for weddings (Kodak Portra 400 and 800 being my favorites right now). 
I feel very blessed to be able to have both film and digital technologies at my disposal. However, on any given trip or assignment, I'll have film with me.

Reason #2: It's Tangible
Instant prints! Negatives! The Dark room is a ... well, it's dark. There is something quite magical about holding the photographs in negative form and seeing, in your hands (and not on a computer screen) the negative of the image you've taken. It's real. It's there. It's not 1's and 0's. 

Instant photography is just as awesome and tangible in a different way. Take the picture, let the picture develop and... a few minutes later, you have a real print in your hands. This is a one of a kind print! 

Reason #3: The Approach
Not having an LCD screen on the back of the camera actually helps me. Instead of constantly checking a screen, I find that I am more "in the moment" and looking for the next photographic opportunity to come together.

Mind you, being able to check the photo on the spot is very useful in certain situations but I find that working without helps me be able to track and photograph moments when the time is right. Being a documentary photographer at weddings, this is huge for me as moments are passing by very quickly and I like to keep my eyes open for new moments instead of LCD screens and histograms.

I'd love to hear from you if you're ever interested in questions about film and also the documentary approach I use. Feel free to comment below or send me an email :)

-Jonathan Desmond-