Someone I work with has asked me to shoot his wedding for him, and I've agreed, after warning him that I've not shot a wedding before.
I'm not sure if I should use digital, or film for this, however, if I go down the film route, which colour print film should I use. It's going to be a traditional wedding, in a non-too well lit church, and it's a safe bet that May in England won't be very bright, so probably 400 speed film
I'll be using my Eos1n if i use film...
I guess my options are
Portra 400 NC
Gold Ultra 400
and probably a bit of Hp5 or tri-X in a second body.
As I don't shoot much colour, I thought I'd ask here, so, which of these films would you recommend for this?
I used fuji Pro800Z for a wedding in north(ish) norway in december which was pretty bright and quite a modern well-lit church. It worked quite nicely.
i have used the portra and the pro series film with great success. i would also second the 800 pro. i have just recently shot some 1600 fuji color film. the scans had a bit of grain but i think that most of that came from the scanner because i had some 3200 speed black and white that showed very little grain on my darkropom print but had more from the scanner.
for B&W (i know you did not ask) my new favorite film is 3200 tmax. great stuff! i shot it indoors rated at 2000 developed it for the 3200 times and used tmax developer with times and temps from the massive development chart. simply beautiful. all i had to do was use a #3 filter on my enlarger! the highlights held well and the shadows came nicely.
here for the 3200 B&W samples
here for the 1600 color
again, please keep in mind that the actual grain is a bit less. still nice though.
I'd go with the Portra. Either NC or VC, depending on how much color saturation you like. Some people find NC too flat.
I'm no expert on this but from what I've heard, one of the major considerations is how you are going to print this colour film. Most labs today scan and then print digitally. What you gain from using film is usually lost in the scanning unless you have high quality scans which are expensive. So if you are giving the film to a lab and saying dev and print, then you better be sure that they have the ability to do high quality scans.
Originally Posted by GeoffHill
If you are scanning negs yourself, then you can get good quality prints from photobox and at very good prices. But again, you are introducing scan and limitation of jpeg files so the benefit of film is debateable.
In a nutshell, if you are printing digitally to photo paper, then the benefit of film is dubious and it will cost more to do. That, as I understand it, is one of the major reasons why a lot of wedding photographers went digital, because the labs went digital and the scan process is usually crap.
i.e. do it digitally unless you are printing direct from film to photo paper or unless you want to pay for high quality scans.
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I don't know about your side of the ocean, but here there are still labs that cater to film processing and printing for weddings. They are getter fewer and fewer, but I suspect they may still do optical printing at a price better than a fully custom lab. Here's one example: http://www.burrellprolabs.com/optical/home.htm
If using such a lab, I would talk to them about what film they prefer simply because the end result of film, processing, and printing is more important than the film per se. I would agree with the previous post regarding VC. I think there is a bias today toward more saturation and that is what the bride/groom might prefer.
I agree with Rob that a lot of wedding photographers (in fact, I think it's the vast majority) have gone digital. But I think it's more to do with the ability to streamline production (online proofing, ordering, and printing) and reduce out-of-pocket costs (film, processing) than the scan process.
Eddie. Might have something to do with it being a prison but your B&W shots are more impressive. Better medium, I think. Prison films always looked better in B&W.
Geoff. I'd be tempted to go to the church several times in advance of the wedding at the wedding hour so to speak and check exposures over a range of weather/light conditionswe and then determine film speed.
Fuji 1600 is very good for a fast film but I think a last resort. I've used it at evening air displays but at 10x8 the grain begins to show in some shots - at least in 35mm it does. You can get away with grain if its a Lancaster or such in the air but portraiture may be another matter.
Pity everyone seems to want colour at weddings.
I'm going to visit the church before the visit, but Its an hours drive away, so it will probably only be one visit.
The Bride sounded quite interested by the idea of B&W wedding prints, but said she would like some colour as well. Especially the formal Bride, groom and family type shots.
Another option I have is to shoot the colour in digital, and the black and white on film. I prefer shooting on film, but on this occasion, I'm not shooting for me, Im shooting for someone else, so the dslr might get an airing. It's not been used much since I discovered HP5
Ask them if they would prefer to keep a CD or negatives.
Carry both cameras on your neck and shoot the ones they want in color at the same time you shoot them in black and white.
You never know, maybe they will change their minds after seeing the prints.
Real photographs, created in camera, 100% organic,
no digital additives and shit
I would use a flash. A very good lens. And, personally Astia100F slide film
O.k., in your case 160VC or the Fuji Superia series.
BW I would make only some 6x6 portrait shots on location. HP5 or trix. If the light is well, FP4, of course.