Do you shoot a wedding primarily with film or digital?


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tomshen

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Feb 20, 2002
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#1
u know, I started with digital. But lately I found skin tone with film is much better. Especially now my keeper rate is quite high so dun need extra frames in many cases. I agree that when shooting digital one has more choices in selecting better expressions, but somehow digital colors are not there.

On the other hand, for web display, digital wins big time.

What do ya think?
 

#2
Maybe it's because Canon isn't good for skintones? :devil:

For me, it all depends on what the clients want. I don't sway them from one to the other coz it doesn't make a hell lot of difference for me.

The thing you have to contend with for digital is the smaller contrast range (wedding gown can get easily blown out if you are not careful) compared to negative films. And of coz, the other thing is White Balance.

Shooting digital, though convenient during shooting, gives you more work later as you now have to sieve through few hundreds of shots and edit out the good ones. If you shot RAW, then you have the extra step of converting them (batch or individual). After all that, you might want to do invidual touchups, crops, adjustments, etc before burning images to CD for printing. With film, you just send it off to a good lab and they take care of everything.

Regards
CK
 

tomshen

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#3
Not that I dunno how to process digital files. I meant: In general film skin tone looks better. Pictures could be same standard, and maybe digital is even better since I can do individual adjustment. When I look at the film printout, it simply makes me wow. However, for sports and moving subjects, digital saves me money. Wedding? Not really.
 

art2d2

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#4
I think shooting film or digital to cover wedding events are subject to the requirements from the clients, like ckiang has mentioned. But the end results are pretty similar. So most of the time, the clients also can't tell and can't be bothered.

I've done some regular wedding shoots once in a while in Malaysia and all of them prefer films. Probably because they can keep the negatives and do their own enlargement and make copies the old fasion way, send it to the lab.

I tried once to cover 1/2 day with just a Canon A70, results are pretty ok and no complaints from the client. Just have to do some touch ups, burn to CD and thats it. But doing individual touch ups to a few hundred photos takes some time. I still prefer to shoot films, probably I'm too lazy to do post processing. :blah:
 

#5
tomshen said:
Not that I dunno how to process digital files. I meant: In general film skin tone looks better. Pictures could be same standard, and maybe digital is even better since I can do individual adjustment. When I look at the film printout, it simply makes me wow. However, for sports and moving subjects, digital saves me money. Wedding? Not really.
Well, I do admit that film does have "that look" in it, esp. when processed and printed in a good lab.

At the end of the day, most people can't really tell. So do what your clients want, or if they don't specify/don't care, use what you are comfortable with.

Regards
CK
 

espn

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#6
So far, been using digital, clients mostly want their shots scanned in the end, extra costs.. digital is more faster in turnover and able to PS after it.
 

Paladin

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#7
I am fully digital. I totally agree with all comments on digital and film. For me it is because most couples would like to have some photo-montage highlights during the pre-dinner slot. Digital allows me to do that.
 

ashbaby

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#8
For me, i shoot in films, lab developed the film but no print out.
They scanned into files and burn on CD. Then i take my time to pick out what i want. PS it whatever...So clients need digital or films no problem. Of course
a little more costly lar, but the output is very good.
 

e_liau

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#9
Used films previously but now, digital. I agreed wholeheartedly that when it comes to skintones, film beats all. Just take a look at prints from films such as REALA and NPS, and it easily beats hands down.

But it's true that digital is more convenient in term of real-time assess. But then again, I realised that I spent more time editing my digital photos now than the actual shooting itself! ****, and all those sitting is causing my tummy to grow bigger ... :(
 

#10
personally, I will use digital (skin tones and stuff can be batch processed later on) due to its speed of processing and many processing forms.

Unless my clients specify usage on films, I'm going digital most of the time. WHat Tom said was right, the skin tone doesn;t really turn out nicer than film. Comparing a shot from a Press800 and the 10D at ISO800 (custom WB).. the feel is Press8 will give a richer, natually saturated warm skin tone (smoother oso) than the digital medium.

Only thing about digital is the human complacency of convenience :devil:
 

synapseman

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#12
For me, it's digital. It allows me to "cheat" by shooting a lot, then selecting only the best. It works for me, and impresses my clients. I still do carry around a film SLR, but that's really only a fail-safe backup. I'll admit that film would probably give superior results to the discerning eye, but for my purposes, the digital shots are still good enough to make people happy.
 

ST1100

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Jun 18, 2003
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#14
i transited from film to digital, so i'd share some thots.

i agree with CK about the part where the lab takes care of everything. For a wedding, i shoot maybe 12 rolls, send it in a decent lab, throw out the rubbish, arrange, put in album, and i'm ready to deliver. For digital, it can take 1-3 weeks just to select, sort and process.

With film, however, i lose certain things, like, as synapseman said, the ability to 'cheat' and take the best of a few shots. i also lose the ability to check important shots for closed eyes and half closed eyes. i lose the ability to shoot continuously for 200 shots without 'changing film', the ability to change ISO on the fly. i also learn more as i go, being able to catch my mistakes earlier.

Anyway, to cut the long story short, i'm not going back to film for event and wedding shoots. Of course, it's not my rice bowl, so i can be dogmatic about it.

Film wins when your process/workflow does not go through the digital medium; ie, you process and print straight from the negative. However, if the workflow requires digitizing your negatives, then digital wins big time, hands down.

High resolution scanning of film brings out grain and dust, and costs a lot in either money or time/effort. Scaling a digitized film also enlarges the grain, unlike the output from dSLRs, which are clean and scale very very well. Before the 'affordable' 10D came out, i spent (estimated) about 1000 hours in front of my PC, scanning, rescanning, cloning dust, colour-correcting, trying to minimise the effect of grain with PS, etc. Not to mention the huge collection of negatives that must be filed, labeled, catalogued and maintained in flat, acid-free folders, and are currently taking up the space of three enormous binders in my dry-cab. (And once the film curls over time, you won't be able to scan it properly.)

Slides are better in the grain and colour department, but they are much harder to scan correctly, and exposure, unlike negatives, is unforgiving of errors. The also come with the same flatness, dust and storage issues as negatives.

The cost of printing from labs are now about the same for film and digital, for all sizes of prints. Printing from digital used to be 50c++ for 4R, which was a deterrent for shooting digital. But not anymore.

Digital has its own share of problems, but most of them can be solved with keyboard, mouse and (some) money. (Try cleaning a fingerprint off a negative, scanning a curled up negative.)

Anyway, the bottom line is that i conceive no situation where i would voluntarily go back to film. i have no comment about the skin-tones being better on film; but i shudder to shoot (and scan) another roll of film. i'll probably never go back to 35mm film, except maybe for emergency backups or very special situations. i may eat my words in the future, but for now, that's how it stands for me. YMMV.

i still have 50-100 rolls of film waiting to be scanned. :sweat:
 

erwinx

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#15
ckiang said:
Maybe it's because Canon isn't good for skintones? :devil:
Yeah, try S2 Pro. The sharpness of Provia combined with the creaminess of Astia :)
 

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