Why We Love to Shoot Film

July 30, 2020

In a seemingly ever growing digital world, our photographic medium of choice is film. We just love to shoot film!

We’re not saying digital is bad! In fact, we use digital quite a bit in our brand and stock photography. Some of the factors that determine whether we shoot film or digital for certain projects are:

  • available light
  • subject matter in front of the camera
  • the film stocks we use
  • client vision for their photos

That being said, there’s just something about the magic of film that will never cease to amaze us. It’s nostalgic and artsy (and if you’ve navigated over to this blog post somehow, you probably already know we’re big fans of those things). It’s so flexible and capable, helping to capture some of the most difficult lighting situations simultaneously. If you came here from our Instagram, you’ll know that we’re here to talk about our top 5 reasons for shooting film.

Why we love to shoot film

  1. Film forces us to be better photographers. It forces us to slow down in order to nail the shot. We make sure the composition, styling, framing, and all other creative aspects of the shot are good to go before we even click the shutter, giving us close to 100% usability of each photo we take. That is nearly unheard of with digital photography, and we should know! Remember, we shoot both!
  2. Film cuts down on editing time. When we receive film scans back from our lab, they’re virtually ready to go. The post-processing is very minimal and not very time consuming. Not only is this beneficial for our clients by reducing the turnaround time on their brand images, but it also allows us to free up our schedules a bit and focus on other important aspects of Lightbulb League other than editing.
  3. Film can capture a wide range of lighting situations simultaneously, within a single frame. Even in difficult lighting situations, film can capture the brightest brights and darkest darks while still retaining detail. Film is there to save the day, whereas digital will either blow your highlights or lose your shadows every time in a difficult lighting situation.
  4. Skin tones photographed on film are out of this world. Like buttah, to put it eloquently. Sometimes, digital tends to emphasize any imperfections on skin. Film has built in PhotoShop, if you will, making all skin tones look so smooth.
  5. The softness, timelessness, and grain of film cannot be beat, in our humble opinion. For many years, we tried to emulate the look of film in our editing. Then one day, it clicked. If we wanted our work to look like film, we needed to shoot film. And we’ve never regretted that decision! The physical features of film that we love the most are the grain, the dreamy tones, and the softness.

Thanks for reading along today! If you’re interested in having some photos made in film to represent your own brand, please email us! hello@lightbulbleague.com


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