The simple pleasures of shooting weddings on film.


So many downsides to this statement, I hardly know where to begin. When compared to shooting on modern digital cameras, film has well and truly been left in the dust. This is even more apparent when photographing weddings, especially in Cumbria with its random weather paterns and dark winter days. Shooting exclusively on film would put any photographer at a major disadvantage.

Its also a softer medium and often (compared to modern digital cameras) has more grain. In digital terms this is called noise, generated by more sensitivity and thus more heat passing through the sensor. There is nothing on a film camera up to using sheet film that digital cannot outstrip in terms of final image. Its just way more clinical. Cleaner – better – predictable – more control. Saving only two critical areas where film can still win: The organic look or natural feel that film gives and transition between light and dark. Film has a way of moving between light and shadow that is unsurpassed, it isn’t about dynamic range but more about how it is rendered.

Then there is the soul…






The decision to become a photographer, made in Portugal in 2001 saw me shooting on film, but using it now doesn’t make me nostalgic at all. Its more about how it captures images and embracing its organic qualities, how it can further enhance what I deliver as a final portfolio of photographs. Photographing weddings using film to compliment the digital images is a choice. The tonal range of film and its unique way of transitioning from light to dark means that it looks like nothing else. Digital can come close with the help of VSCO or Mastin but these are now matching tools for the digital files I produce more than anything. The organic look of images is important, Not to be mistaken with the faddy brown colour spaces that photographers are using on images currently. Like looking back at your parents wedding photographs, these will show their age in time.

Cost is an important factor as a roll of black and white Ilford film now would be around £5, colour film around £8 and professiona fujifilm emulsions costing up to £20. Its impossible now to cost effectively shoot an entire wedding on film and not charge clients upwards of two and a half thousand pounds for thirty or forty rolls and processing. So shooting three or four rolls at a wedding will give people a compliment to the digital images taken on the day, a hybrid of the two and something timeless, shot on a camera that often has manual focusing, produces square images instead of rectangular or even produces more than one image in a single shot.

Wigton Cumbria wedding photographer

Its also fun. There is an enjoyment to be had from working on film, seeing your images for the first time on a scanner bed or printing in the dark room. Not many photographers work with film now but for those who do it is incredibly rewarding. This brings me back to the soul, not just that film has the ability to make soulful images (great photographers do that) but more that its alternative, unique and good for the soul to work with.

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The links above are for some of my favourite emulsions and if you would like film shot at your wedding you need only ask.

Russ and Jills destination wedding at the sensatori resort, Lyttos Beach, Analipsi, Crete.

Lets get one thing straight, shooting weddings overseas is a huge honor and privilege to do and Russ and Jill were no exception. The Sensatori in Crete is a fantastic hotel with loads of bits and bobs around it like beaches, cafes and little chapels too. Russ and Jill knew what they wanted from their photography and not taking up too much time on the day, I photographed them in as many places as I could before pulling away to let them enjoy the day. Maybe I should change my name to “Lake District Wedding Photography International”? Nah, anyway here is a wedding for a lovely couple that was a pleasure to shoot on one of the most beautiful and scenic islands in the whole of the medditeranian sea.

Sensatori crete wedding photography
Lots of the speeches and reception. The girls running about were really funny.

I have left some stuff out as the images of Jill and Russ will take up most of my available space. I can’t say enough how happy I am with how the images turned out and even though I generally travel armed to the teeth with cameras when I go overseas I only used one digital and one two and a quarter square film camera.

flower girl at greek wedding
The theme for the day was a dusty pink and it worked so well in the summery sky.
wedding photography destination in Greece
Russ looking like Jason Bourne in the wedding chapel. (I think he looks a bit like Matt Damon)

Jills hair was a really striking dark red on the day which contrasted really well with the dusty pink of her dress. Photographing her in the chapel was awesome and in the hotel grounds, she contrasted really well with the surroundings.

What a great couple to photograph.


Crete wedding photography from England
One more in the Chapel before heading outside.
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The ceiling outside the chapel was almost totally transparent and diffused the light beautifully.
overseas wedding
I loved this beach and the light was so muted.
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Sometimes the simplest images are the ones that stand out to me. Shot on the Yashica 66 film camera and Ilford film.
Crete wedding images destination
It really would be difficult to take a bad picture of Jill.
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Got wet feet taking this one.
overseas wedding event photographers.
This one capped it all for me. Its the one that I had stuck in my head for a while.
Analipsi is a beautiful village. Everything that a quaint old village should be.
Tripadvisor wedding photographer.
I should put this into the guests photos for the hotel on tripadvisor. Cool stairs though.
Far flung destination wedding photography
Last one. The hotel had some cool lines and arches. No more will fit in the blog though!

Thanks again for everything both and I loved photographing you in one of the most amazing and beautiful places I have ever been to.

Lake District Wedding Photography Cumbria

Current Offer

A full day’s wedding coverage (8hrs)

Includes a USB drive of images.

Option of a half-price photobooth (£200)

All for only: £899

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Lake District Wedding Photography, 21 Mill Road, Glasson, Cumbria, CA7 5EE [email protected]