REDEFINE | Film Photography featuring Léa Jones, Photographer

Share with us a bit about film photography.
I enjoy observing life as it happens and document it in all it’s simplicity.  I believe that the best things about life are the simple things.  I approach photography the same way, and strive to document as it is. I found that since I picked up camera and started on my photography journey (about 5 years ago), I have learned to observe and appreciate beauty everywhere.  I discovered how fascinating light is, I love how it transforms mundane objects and moments.  I love the challenge of translating feelings and emotions into a photograph, sometimes I succeed, sometimes I don’t, but that is the beauty of life.

Why are you passionate about film photography?

First, I love film photography because I find the colors incredible. I am often surprised by the scans that I received: how a green or blue was rendered, or all the different tones in my daughter’s hair. Another reason I love film is that it has taught me let go of perfection: I want to nail focus and exposure, and I try to capture the best moment and I will frame as well as I can, but because I cannot overshoot. I will not try to take the same photo 25 times to get one perfect shot. I will shoot one or two frames and hope for the best. I find it very freeing. Sometimes I mess up, but it doesn’t matter to me. If I captured the emotion or the feeling I consider it a success.

Did you start off with film or digital?

I started in 2010 with digital and it’s only in 2014 that I discovered that people were still using film. I love grain and I love deep colors so it was not difficult for me to fall in love with film. I love that I can shoot medium format, it really is pretty amazing. I would never be able to shoot medium format on a digital camera!

What are the tips you would share with anyone trying to begin shooting film?

Get a cheap 35mm, get a light meter, watch a few tutorials on how to meter, join a group of film shooters (most filmies are super helpful), and just try it. It’s not as difficult as you might think. Portra 400 is very easy and forgiving, and Agfa Vista is my favorite cheap film. Send your first roll in. Use a professional lab. When I started out, I used a local one, and the scans were nowhere near as nice as when I started to send it to a pro lab. Some labs will give you feedback on your metering and that is super helpful. Enjoy the ride, there will ups and downs, but nothing compares to scans hitting your inbox.

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About the photographer:

My name is Léa.  I am French, and my British husband and our 3 kids moved to Massachusetts 4 years ago.  I love to travel and see new places.  I have really enjoyed seeing the US through my french eyes and going back to Europe every summer has been exhilarating.  I love re-visiting places I have known for years and my camera has taught me to see beauty in the most simple things: whether  it’s an old house in the North of New-Hampshire, little boats on the Welsh coast or fruit on the market in the South of France.

Website. Instagram. Facebook.

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