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South Jersey wedding photographer Jay Cassario blog. Writer for SLR Lounge and Shotkit.com. 

3 Rolls of Fuji Reala & a Nikon FM

Jay Cassario

Ever since I first started learning how to use a DSLR in manual mode, I had always wanted to venture into using film, even though it is almost completely forgotten about these days. It wasn't until recently that I started making slight changes to some of my post processing, giving my portrait work a taste of the old look of film. Adding noise to digital images to give the look of film grain can give a lot of character to an image, and a nice artistic touch, but I often feel like I haven't earned the right to give a look and feel of film when I've never used it...besides in throw away cameras. 

So, I picked up an old Nikon FM 35mm camera and a 50mm f/2 manual lens over a year ago at an antique store on the way home from PA, and its sat on a shelf like an antique ever since. So lately I've been becoming more and more intrigued by film photography and how even new photos taken with film can look like the aged photos I've been going through, taken by my mom many years before I was even born, when she was a photographer. 

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It has been eating at me that I call myself a photographer yet have never shot with film, and although digital is here to stay and film is a way of the past, the look and feel of film has been becoming more and more popular. So, I felt that if I was going to give my digital images a film like look, I needed to truly understand film photography, by shooting with it.

So...I ordered a few rolls of film off Ebay, pulled the Nikon FM out, and googled a manual to learn how to load it, wind it, and set the ASA of the film. I questioned my skills and all that I've learned over the past couple years, fearing that without the digital screen for me to read to tell me my exposure is good, or relying on my Matrix Metering, that figuring out the correct shutter speed and aperture on my own would result in a roll of either all white or all black images when I was done. I finished up the first roll on Sunday at a birthday shoot we had, and dropped it off at Rite Aid on the way home, asking how fast they could have them done, lol. 

To my surprise, they all came out. The focus is off on a lot of them which I can't figure out, even though its extremely hard to manually focus with this camera, and they are all soft images for the most part, but...they all came out. A lot of them were junk shots of just trees or the cats, so I'll just post a couple that came out decent. Here ya go...pretty cool stuff. 

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