Tips & Questions for Film Photographers

I attended an August Dering photography masterclass in 2020 where he laid out some secrets of photography in general. While he was primarily talking about digital photography in his workshop, and everything he said was extremely valuable, below I am going to let you guys in on a few secrets that I found super useful, and ones that also pertain to film photography!

Secret #1 - Eyes see more than light and therefore have more range than a camera does. You have to think how the camera sees, not how you see. Different surfaces will react to light differently. Play around with different surface colours, textures and sizes and see what creative captures you come up with.

Secret #2 - Photographers focus too much on the subject and not enough on the entire frame. Slow down and look at all of the visual elements around you. You should ask yourself; "what am I missing in this frame?" "What have excluded that could be interesting?" Or think about how you can play with angles and zooms to capture a unique image. 

Secret #3 - When you take a photo, you have to think that your photos are not unique and train the editing eye. Whatever it is that can be stripped out of the photograph, do it! If you do not need it then get rid of it. Ask yourself if the element in the photograph is adding to the picture or taking away from it. Honestly, this tip will work wonders for you in film photography, and a necessary one when you're not sure how the photo will turn out. 

One of the things that he advised (and I did immediately after the class) was to study images online or in books that you love! Ask yourself why you love those images specifically and what is it about them that is attracting you to them. Think analytically and practice! All good photography comes with practice and the more you get the hang of it, the more these tips will come naturally to you.

So, what do you think? Am I missing any good tips here? Let me know!


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