My take on Analog Film Photography

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the APUG Community' started by afrank, Dec 8, 2012.

  1. afrank

    afrank Member

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  2. darkosaric

    darkosaric Subscriber

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    I was thinking about this question a lot. It is not just technical benefits, nicest choices of B&W papers, nicer grain that films give, and so on.
    I think that Erwin Puts made it clear for me: it is state of mind. Knowing that you want to capture one moment - you have one chance, and you are willing to pay for this - in comparison that you can capture millions of moments for free and then delete it for free, and make it again: this makes critical difference in state of mind - and by this makes different final results.

    "The idea that you can take digital pictures with the mentality and approach of the filmbased style of photography is as grotesk as trying to drive a modern racing car with the mental state of handling a steam engine."
     
  3. Jeff Kubach

    Jeff Kubach Member

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    I'm just an analog guy in a digital world.

    Jeff
     
  4. batwister

    batwister Member

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    I prefer 'Pay As You Go' photography, rather than those 18 month DSLR contracts.
     
  5. kb3lms

    kb3lms Subscriber

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    Somebody said to me that digital photography was like microwave pizza. That analogy pretty much says it for me.
     
  6. kbrede

    kbrede Member

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    What camera were you using in the video Afrank?
     
  7. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    I use film because that's what my cameras take.
     
  8. afrank

    afrank Member

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    Was using a Digital :redface: m43 E-P2 with a 20mm f1.7. Some other takes are with a MD Minolta 50mm f/1.7 .
    Cant find a cheap 35mm video camera (even 16mm are waaayyyy to grainy for me)
     
  9. Ken Nadvornick

    Ken Nadvornick Member

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    Have said this before, but for me it's the provenance of film. That direct connection between the original live subject and the medium upon which it was directly rendered.

    At the moment I have a Standard Gallery photograph submitted showing my late father sitting in an amusement park ride. It was made in 1953. When I made the print last weekend I held in my hand the original negative upon which that subject had been directly rendered at that point in time. That negative had been physically inside the camera that was, at that long ago moment, only about 12 feet away from my dad. Indeed, the depicted image on that negative could not have been realized unless this were true.

    As I've said before, the negative bears silent witness to the moment of time rendered upon it.* As fellow APUGger Maris has phrased it, there is an indexical relationship between the subject and the medium which recorded that subject.

    For me, that relationship makes all the difference. The authenticity of film is a direct consequence of that relationship. And that relationship—that provenance—does not exist with an abstract digital image file. Sorry, it just physically doesn't. In fact, it physically can't.

    That's why I choose film.

    Ken

    * Yes, yes. I know all about darkroom tricks with negatives, and other exceptions to rules. But that's not the core point here...
     
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  10. kbrede

    kbrede Member

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    Sorry I was referring to the TLR film camera. :smile: It looks nice and small compared to my RZ67.
    Thanks,
     
  11. afrank

    afrank Member

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    Was a Yashica mat 124g.

    Interesting case, Where does the reproduce-ability of the photo lay under your view of things?
     
  12. Ken Nadvornick

    Ken Nadvornick Member

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    Just as you say. As reproductions. One can reproduce it as silver, as carbon, as ink, or scan it into an abstract image file to be later used to print it by any of these or other methods. But all of them are image reproductions from the original photograph.

    The photograph is the real world thing upon which the original image was rendered—in situ as Maris correctly notes—as a direct consequence of being in proximity to the original subject. Break that chain of provenance and the photograph then becomes only a reproduced image.

    There is a tendency today to confuse photographs and images. A photograph is the thing that rendered and preserved the original image of the subject at the original point in time. It was the thing the light from the subject originally transformed, and it preserves that transformation. It was in proximity to the subject at the point of the original rendering. It possesses an unbroken chain of provenance originating with that subject. You can hold it in your hands. It is authentic.

    The image rendered in the photograph can be—as often is—subsequently reproduced in volume. Sometimes faithfully. Sometimes not. And sometimes intentionally not. Images can be reproduced in books, magazines, newspapers, on your computer monitor, by your inkjet printer, or via a silver gelatin print. Any of these methods (except the monitor) can also serve to preserve the image. Or it can also be preserved by abstracting it into a digital image file.

    A digital image file is another distinct level of abstraction from the image. The file does not store the image. It stores a descripion of the image. An abstract pattern. The directions or recipe, if you will, of how to recreate the image on your computer for display on your monitor.

    The file consists of an arbitrarily long sequence of binary digits. 0s and 1s. But as we all know, 0s and 1s are themselves abstractions. They are not real. You cannot hold a 0 or a 1 (or a 2, 3, 4...) in your hands. They are abstract descriptors intended to refer to something real. Saying "give me 4 pencils" is a recipe for assembling a specific group of specific objects. It is not the objects themselves. The same way that a digital image file is not the photographic object itself.

    Ken
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 8, 2012