by Joe Thompson, Joe & Patience
(all photos by Joe & Patience, taken on film)
Film. Something a lot of us thought would be quickly thrown to the side and forgotten in the onset of digital photography has been making a remarkable comeback as of late.
I can still remember the exact moment I rediscovered film. There was just something about the look of the photos I was seeing on the screen in front of me. The scanned photos were vibrant without looking cartoonish, soft without being out of focus and somehow leapt from the screen even though they were taken with a technology that was so recently thought to be on its deathbed.
Well my friends, film is most certainly not dead and there’s more than a small chance that many of the photos you may be noticing while poring over countless wedding blogs planning your wedding were taken on this timeless medium.
While both film and digital capture memories, the approach and the process in which they get there is quite different. The process is completely different but it's the approach that I feel most separates the way the final images look.
Before I picked up a film camera again I shot and shot and shot at every single session I photographed. With a digital camera you can take an almost limitless amount of photos. I had the bad habit of overshooting everything. I wasn’t in control of my subjects and took four, five or even six photos of the exact same pose hoping to catch just the right moment.
Film forces the photographer to slow down, plan and stay in control because of the limits it imposes. It makes you find the best light and the most flattering angles and helps you to anticipate moments rather than react to moments.Even though I still shoot digital alongside film, it is my film approach that has really changed the way I photograph couples, families and all of the amazing moments that happen on a wedding day.
One of the most important goals for my business, Joe & Patience, is to provide beautiful, timeless images. Images that will look as relevant to our grandchildren as they do to us now. Film is the perfect medium to accomplish this. We love the color, the dynamic range and, most importantly, the soul that film gives to our photos. We match our digital photos as closely to their film counterparts as possible but there's always just a little bit missing – the soul, the slight imperfection of an analog medium.
A photographer I greatly admire recently told me that he loves shooting film because he feels it exercises a part of the brain that doesn't get used with instant feedback that digital provides. It forces you to use your imagination and by using your imagination it makes you more creative.
It’s this creativity mixed with the timeless look of film that I feel makes it perfect for wedding photography. Plus you're not losing anything by choosing a film photographer. In today’s world, film is easily scanned into digital files that can still be shared all over the world.
Joe Thompson is one half of the husband and wife wedding and family photography team Joe & Patience.