I am often asked about what cameras (both film and digital) I use and what film that I like the best. In this installment of Photo Life, I'd like to share some of the photography equipment that I use and most importantly, that I love. Hopefully, this will be helpful!
I use my digital cameras almost everyday to capture my girls and my project life layouts. I shoot with my Nikon D600, which almost always has the Nikon AF-S Nikkor 24 - 70mm f/2.8 lens attached. For client work, I love the Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 50mm f/1.4G lens, and my go to portrait lens is definitely the Nikon AF FX NIKKOR 85mm f/1.8G lens.
When I am on the go, I love to bring my Fuji X-T1 - it's small, sharp, and light. Perfect to tuck in my bag without weighing it down. I photograph most of my layouts with this camera. I have the Fuji XF 35mm f/1.4 lens.
Instant Film Photography
When I want to capture my feeling or mood, I reach for my film cameras.
I have a restored Polaroid Land 250 Camera which I purchased from LandCameras.com. I've had it for years and still works as good as the day I received it. I use Fuji FP-100C film and Fuji FP-3000B (now discontinued).
The Polaroid Sun 660 rounds out my Polaroid collection. I love bringing this camera on vacation with me! I purchased it on ebay a couple of years ago - but there are plenty available at garage sales, goodwill, antique shops, and etsy. Of course, Polaroid 600 is now discontinued, but I have had great success with Impossible 600 Color Film.
Fuji Instax Mini Instant Film and Fuji Wide Instant Color Film is the most readily available instant film. I use them with my Instax 210 Instant wide camera and my Instax Mini 90 Neo Classic camera - both are fun to use and my kid friendly. My girls love both of these cameras, and I always love their perspective! Many of these photos make their way to my layouts as well.
35mm Film Photography
If I could recommend only one film camera, it would definitely be the Pentax K1000. There are plenty available on ebay. It was my first film camera and I learned so much about photography, even after years of shooting digitally. With this camera, I learned to shoot in Manual - setting my aperture, shutter speed, and ISO all on my own. Here are a few tips on choosing a 35mm manual film camera.
If you shoot digitally with a Nikon, I could probably hand you my Nikon F100 and you would instantly feel at home! That's exactly how I feel about this autofocus 35mm film camera, it just feels good in my hands. An absolute pleasure to shoot with. I purchased this camera used, but in excellent condition on Adorama.
My favorite 35mm film: Kodak Portra 400 and Fuji Pro 400H.
Medium Format Film Photography
My medium format film cameras consist of the Contax 645 and the Hasselblad 500c. Both are great cameras and produce large, beautiful prints.
I definitely don't use the Contax as much as I should, it is extremely large and heavy. But the resulting images are stunning. Here's proof.
The Hasselblad was a total impulse buy from a camera shop during a visit to San Francisco a couple of years ago. I saw it, took one look through the viewfinder, pressed the shutter, and took it home with me that very day. I've mentioned this before, but this camera has the best sounding shutter, hands down. You can hear it in this short film that I recorded a while back.
My favorite 120 film for the Contax and Hasselblad: Kodak Portra 400 and Fuji Pro 400H. I also have a polaroid back that I use with both of these cameras, which I load with Fuji FP 100c instant film. They don't use the entire width of the film, as you can see at the bottom of this post, but I still love the results.
I use Adobe Lightroom to organize all of my photos - but film and digital. I post process my digital photos with Adobe Photoshop. I don't alter my film images in order to preserve the look and feel of the film.
I develop my film at a local photo lab and scan all of my film at home on my Epson V600. I also print my photos at home with the Epson 3880 which I have had for years. I find that Epson papers work best with Epson printers. I print with Epson Premium Semi-Gloss photo paper and Epson Velvet Fine Art Paper.
Whew - I know that's a lot! Definitely let me know if you have questions about anything I mentioned here, I'm happy to help.
And as always, please let me know if there is a topic or question you would like addressed in this series. Feel free to leave a comment below or send me an email.