Film is Evergreen

Sydney Wolfe, Photo Editor

In recent years, film photography has made its return as teenagers have grown to prefer the aesthetic of film rather than digital phone cameras. Although digital cameras have become more advanced than ever and digital photography is the most prominent photographic medium today, there is an undeniable aesthetic associated with film photography that cannot be replaced.

Today, smartphones and DSLRs make the process of taking photographs too easy. You don’t have to worry about the results because it instantaneously shows up in your roll of photos. If you don’t like a photo, you can just trash it and retake it with the click of a few buttons. While digital photography may be more convenient, the process isn’t nearly as genuine or gratifying as film photography.

In film photography, light-sensitive, photographic film is exposed to light in order to take a picture. An impression is captured when the camera’s shutter opens and exposes the film to light. Once the exposure is made and the impression is captured, the film is rolled forward to prepare a new, fresh section of unexposed film for the next photo.

Thus, film photography forces a photographer to commit to taking a photo, rather than catering to indecision. While some may not have the patience required for film photography, the process is far more rewarding than just snapping a photo with an iPhone. With film, the act of taking a picture and having it ‘disappear’ until it gets developed creates a sense of excitement and anticipation for the photographer and the people in the photos. 

Evidently, film captures the true, raw value and process of taking photographs. With digital photographs, an individual can use Photoshop and filters to perfect an image and make it look ‘perfect.’ Film captures the genuinity and authenticity of a moment in time. Not to mention, film typically produces sharper and more detailed images and has more natural color.

The process of film photography builds knowledge and encourages purer experimentation. Today, many would rather just take a picture with a smartphone and then use apps like VSCO to replicate the distinctly grainy and slightly green tint of a film photo. Although this is a cheaper alternative to film or disposable cameras, the use of digital mediums to replicate film photography is an insult to the art of film.

Something about knowing a photo was taken on film creates a sense of intimacy and nostalgia between an image and the viewer

— Sydney Wolfe

Although the rise of digital cameras and technology has made photo-taking easier than ever before, the art of photography is being lost. With digital photography, many don’t appreciate the opportunity to take a photo and savor the moment. On the contrary, film photography allows for a person to really solidify their memories from a certain moment. It saves the pain of going through 100 images from a burst of photos and trying to select which one is the best. 

Film photography is undeniably the blueprint of all aesthetics. Something about knowing a photo was taken on film creates a sense of intimacy and nostalgia between an image and the viewer. Film evokes emotions and ignites memories that are simply incomparable to the capabilities of digital photography.