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How to Safely Ship Film

Tons of thought goes into how to safely protect images for any professional photographer. Consideration is given to image protection when shooting, photo archive back-up, and even protection against hazard using cloud storage. For the digital photographer, any concerns usually stops there. However, for the hybrid or film photographer, film must be shipped to their photo lab for processing. This extra step can bring with it extra risk. But there are steps you can take to mitigate this risk. In the video below, I cover how to safely ship film to your lab.

The steps aren’t about choosing the best shipping company. I’ve heard so many people complain about FedEx, UPS, and USPS. Fact is, they’re all the same. Each shipping company delivers regularly and occasionally has issues. Choosing one company over another really won’t make a difference. Instead, mitigating risk is done how you pack and address the shipment. Here are some top tips from the video:

  1. Secure your film inside zip-lock bags
  2. Use a good shipping container – use a box and avoid envelopes
  3. Securely seal your package with good, thick tape
  4. Use a printed label – ensures the shipping details are easily scanned by the shipping company
  5. Never hand-write the shipping label
  6. Consider buying a label printer to make at-home preparation easy

How to safely ship film really boils down to ensuring the shipping company can easily read the intended destination. Equally important is choosing a good photo lab that will treat your film well.

If you enjoyed this quick tutorial, try subscribing to my YouTube photography channel. You can also follow recent work on Instagram.

How to Use an External Light Meterwith Film

From time to time, I get an itch to produce tutorials for fellow photographers. It usually starts with a Facebook post asking a question, or a friend seeking help. In one of my favorite Facebook groups, I’ve recently noticed a lot of questions about how to use an external light meter with film.

It’s so much easier for me to record a short video to demonstrate my techniques. So in the video below I quickly cover how to use an external light meter with film. However, the video isn’t specific to film. I also cover how I use the same meter for digital photography. The video is specific to color film, as black and white film is a little different. Once I got used to using an external light meter, it quickly became part of my regular arsenal. I pretty much never work without a light meter.

I also take some time to cover mistakes people commonly make when using an external light meter. Keep in mind that there are as many ways to meter as there are photographers. What I describe is my method for metering. There are many other methods that work well for other photographers. That being said, there definitely are bad methods too. Just find the best metering method for you.

You might also consider following my YouTube photography channel for additional video tutorials, or keeping up with my latest work on Instagram.

Kelsie & CodyNazareth Hall Wedding PhotographyDelta, Ohio

When you first arrive, Nazareth Hall looks like an Italian garden estate. The main building is set atop a hill, overlooking rolling fields that descend to a stream on the backside. Beside the stream lies a small grotto built from coral limestone. It’s within this grotto where Kelsie & Cody held their intimate wedding ceremony. Practically speaking, Nazareth Hall is in the middle of nowhere, which makes it’s presence so amazing. After touring the grounds and nearby Delta, Ohio, I was ready to start Kelsie & Cody’s Nazareth Hall wedding photography.

Like so many modern weddings, Kelsie & Cody smartly chose to start with a first look. On Kelsie’s suggestion, I had scouted out a nearby park beside the Maumee River for the first look and bridal party portraits. The park could not have been more perfect. Plus, it happened to be where Kelsie & Cody were originally engaged. We even chose to include the bench where they sat just moments before Cody proposed.

I was happiest for Kelsie during her outdoor wedding ceremony in the grotto. You see, I’ve known Kelsie for years. We met a number of years ago when I was just starting with photography. She was also just starting her modeling career. Flash-forward a few years and we were now at her own wedding. She beamed with excitement during the wedding ceremony, which could not have been more perfect.

What followed was the perfect wedding day. Cocktail hour at sunset on the patio, followed by a beautiful reception inside Nazareth Hall. We even had a chance to sneak outside for some sunset photos to close the day. After the wedding was all over, both Kelsie and I got a big surprise. The Knot decided to publish her wedding! Have a look at The Knot feature, if you please. Below are some of my favorite highlights from Kelsie & Cody’s Nazareth Hall wedding photography. I hope you enjoy!

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