i wasn't talking about instructors
but people practicing photography
who use film and darkroom work
alternative process stuff, large format, holga or whatever
as a way to suggest that because it was made
"xyz' way it is inherently better than any sort of
photographs made using a digital or hybrid medium.
like with anything else it is usually the loudmouths
that don't have a leg to stand on, they talk a good talk
but that's about it ...
hcb didn't set foot in a darkroom and it seems that
his body of work shows he had the chops and speaks for itself
not every person who picks up a camera cares about darkroom work
just like most people who look at an image don't really care how it was made...
Film prints/slides come back from the lab looking great (hopefully). Digital needs post-processing of some sort. You have to do it even if you exposed the photo perfectly. This necessitates teaching photoshop skills in class (though PS isn't gonna help poor composition).
I agree with much of what has already been said, as some things are easier to learn on film cameras and some on digital. I would certainly endorse keeping things simple and start my students off on simple darkroom imagery before moving onto film/digital and get them to record their progress in an A3 journal. A good early project in helping to develop a way of seeing is “Alphabet Shapes”, where students are asked to record as many letters of the alphabet from shapes they find when walking around. This helps them look more objectively at things (those on this site new to photography may wish to try it). I believe Robert Doisneau applied this technique to some of his general photography.
As has been discussed here but not really narrowed down, photography is a multifaceted craft.
There's the camera/exposure aspect, then there is the artistic composition aspect, then there is the making of a print aspect which branches off considerably into a whole new set of skills.
So where to start. Obviously with a camera and learn that technique and craft.
Then you move to making some sort of print. If analog there are a lot of avenues that can take a lifetime to perfect. If digital, photoshop/computer programs is an ever evolving set of skills and craft to learn.
Then once you have a print, there is the critique to learn composition etc. Which hopefully will transition back into SEEING when originally looking through the viewfinder.
So the OP is a bit too ambiguous to really nail down to analog vs digital.
And Einstein came up with the Theory of Relativity, so why can everyone come up with an earth-shattering theory? :whistling:
Originally Posted by jnanian
But I agree that no one way is best -- some have the self-disipline, some need it enforced, some may not need it at all.
HCB may never have developed or printed his own work, but he had enough technical chops to know which shutter and aperture settings to use with which film to get the result he was looking for. And he knew enough to be able to talk to the darkroom workers who did his work for him to be able to coax the results he wanted from his film. I've seen some of his contact sheets at a show at ICP a couple years ago - they were all marked up, so he had to be able to say "burn this, dodge that, crop the other" in a way that his printer could produce a print that looked good.
Originally Posted by jnanian
I was asked about learning photgraphy a few times. I always told folks to shoot one type of chrome film only in manual mode and have the film processed by a competent lab. Chromes don't lie. I told them, after learning exposure with chromes, learning to shoot and process b&w would be a lot easier.
Originally Posted by Vaughn
im not sure why everyone doesn't come up with earth shattering theory ..
maybe people do but are no coy to express themselves.
plenty of earth shattering theories in comix, but unfortunately no one takes them seriously ;)
Probably good advice. If you can nail chromes you can nail anything. (obviously with different exposure criteria for each kind of film or capture)
Originally Posted by Old-N-Feeble