Why I shoot film.

July 27, 2019

I have been an analog photography enthousiast for a while now, and for the past two years I actually document my personal life on film.


There are many reasons for me to use a digital SLR when I shoot professionally, most of them are related to the fact that I am a perfectionist. I believe in the perfection of imperfection. You'll notice that the colors in my work aren't perfect, that the angle, the way the light hits my subject can be off. But it's the imperfections that I have imagined and it's all controlled and on purpose.

That's also why I take about eight-hundred photo's during a one-and-a-half hour shoot. Maybe on one of the frames my subjects eyes are closed, or her hand rests in a strange angle but in the second or third frame of that moment, everything comes together. 



When I shoot analog (35mm film), this isn't possible. I can't see the photograph right after I take it, and can not even know if the photo is ruined. 

Film is expensive.

First you have to buy the film which costs about 4 to 18 euros per 36 frames, and costs another 7€ to develop at the photoshop. (For this price you do not even have prints, but they send you a link with the digital files to download.)

So you really think twice before you press that shutter button. As it costs at least 35 cents every time you take a picture.


That to me is a really positive thing about film photography.


"Positive? Why?" you ask?


Have you ever noticed that when anything interesting happens in the streets these days, everyone takes out their mobile phone and starts snapping away? They are so focused on taking their pictures that they actually forget to be present and in the moment. They forget to just be.


When I am out with one of my analog cameras (at the moment mostly an old Minolta SRT100x from 1979) and I want to document a moment to treasure forever, I really think about what to capture to be able to remember that day in the best possible way. It can be a table setting, the wind blowing through the trees, making the branches move or a nice view. 

I only take one or two photo's and then I leave my camera hanging around my neck, and I just am.


Because I pay so much attention at the time I am taking the picture, when I see these developed photographs even two years later, I remember these moments so well that I am being transported back in time.


























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ⓒ 2019 Mariska Broersma.

Brussels, Belgium.