View more of these images at my new Instagram account dedicated to film shooting: Ghost Code Film Roll.

Often you hear that shooting film slows you down. Makes you a better photographer. Makes you consider your shot instead of just ripping off a million disposable sets of 1s and 0s.

In high school I shot film on my grandfather's Canon AE-1 and 50mm f/1.8 lens. I had no idea what I was doing and wasn't particularly passionate about it, but it was fun and interesting. I may or may not have had the chance to take the very last photography class offered in the state of Michigan to high school students, in which we actually shot and developed rolls of 35mm film and made prints in a darkroom using enlargers. It was incredibly fun. But it was also slow and expensive (and it still is) and I just wasn't very good. Huh. One could say, as a 16 year old, I wanted more instant gratification! I mean, maybe. But honestly, after the class ended I just didn't have any money to keep doing it and I come from a "humble" family, let's say.

Years and years passed, and I had children, and I began my career as a web developer. I bought a refurbished Nikon D3300 body on Amazon with the Nikon 35mm f/1.8 DX lens separately. I still recommend this setup to anyone looking to start out. Comment below if you want more details on why.

But this was an amazing place to start. I was hooked, and this time became passionate. The instant feedback in photography, I think, is necessary. Particularly at the beginning when you're feeling around in the dark, figuring out what P, S, and M all stand for on the camera, and how to focus, and why pictures don't look great with the built-in flash, and what the hell is Lightroom!? RAW or JPEG? And why can't I just get this picture straight from the camera to Facebook!? (Still trying to figure that one out, Nikon and Canon?)

Yet at this point I've been shooting relentlessly for probably over 4 years. My background in technology and computers has helped me tremendously in the post-processing arena. Yet, even with that I wouldn't be anywhere near where I am today without the amazing resources on the Internet such as RGG EDU, Phlearn, and tons of YouTube channels such as Tony & Chelsea, Glyn Dewis, Phase One (for Capture One tutorials mostly), FStoppers, Vibrant Shot, and Peter Hurley to name a few.

And now that I know what I like and have a style I can pretty much call my own, I feel as though I can shoot film.

Now, you can still get cameras that shoot on Auto mode and you can still shoot Instax mini film, etc. But for me, I bought and CLA'd a Nikon F2. It's got the DP-1 viewfinder, with a meter that barely works so I barely use it. Instead I often try to use good old "Sunny 16" or use the Lux app for iOS. It's been wonderful so far. The physical action of having to meter for each situation forces me to think about how I want to shoot before blowing any shots off just because I can. It activates my brain and my creativity in a new and more organic way.

I loved shooting this way so much that I traded in my old Nikon D3 and picked up a Mamiya RZ67 Pro ii to finally start shooting medium-format film on something other than my Holga cameras.

Oh my god I can't go back.

You'll hear me extol the virtues of film more in future blogs, but for now know this: I'm officially considering changing my whole business model to become a hybrid photographer. What they say about shooting film is true. Is makes you a better photographer, AND there is nothing quite like the look of film.

Take a look...

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The instant feedback in photography, I think, is necessary. Particularly at the beginning when you're feeling around in the dark, figuring out what P, S, and M all stand for on the camera, and how to focus, and why pictures don't look great with the built-in flash, and what the hell is Lightroom!? RAW or JPEG? And why can't I just get this picture straight from the camera to Facebook!? (Still trying to figure that one out, Nikon and Canon?)

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View more of these images at my new Instagram account dedicated to film shooting: Ghost Code Film Roll.