Nope, I don't feel in the slightest bit "threatened" by digital. People can do as they please and the best of luck to them. The point is: "why bother"?
Why try to make your images look like they were made by a different process? A major point of shooting a toy camera is the fun, no-fuss and unpredictable results from the artefacts that appear spontaneously due to the nature of the equipment. You are not supposed to PLAN spontaneity, and if you do, you will fail.
Do people printing in Pt/Pd try to make their prints look like silver? Do people creating cyanotypes bemoan the blue colour of their prints (and yes, I've seen the photoshop tips on how to make your digi-images "look like cyanotypes")?
No. It's just silly. If you want to produce pt/pd prints, learn the process; if you want cyanotypes, learn the process; if you want to make bromoils, learn how to make bromoils; if you want toy camera prints, use a toy camera and if you want digiprints, use a digicam. That's the FUN of it all!
Why spend time making a 3rd-rate pastiche of something else? It's the difference between owning original studio pottery and a cheap reproduction off the local hardware store's shelves. A fake is a fake. Why waste valuable time making fakes?
Makes no sense to me.
There's not much you cannot do. Earlier this year AP carried another of its "devoted to B&W" sections. That carried Daguerrotypes and other alternative processes. Don't get too excited it was all in PS. In fact there wasn't even a mention of analogue, silver gelatin, film, darkroom etc. The last AP mag that seemed to be devoted to B&W had been less than 3 years previously. It had split grade printing; an article on liquid emulsion etc. All sunk without trace in less than 3 years and replaced by PS.
Nothing's impossible with PS except maybe resurrecting Fox Talbot himself from the grave. Now had he been called Christopher Lee, well who knows? Sorry joke only available to UK devotees of 1960s British Hammer Horror films.
I have yet to see a digital process that can replicate the look of a Diana's warbly focus, what happens when the picture starts to fall apart at the edges of the image circle, or the look of slight defocus through these lenses. Vignetting isn't the whole story.
Originally Posted by bjorke
And there are rather startling variations between different copies of the same model toy cameras in my experience (just like hand-polished brass lenses).
- good point, and equally applicable to the idea of adding film-like grain or full-frame negative print borders to a digital image in PS. If it isn't an analogue photograph, don't attemp to make it look like one. (I dislike veneer in furniture making for the same reason: if it is not wood, don't try to make it look like it. Be honest and humble about what you do - nothing wrong with using MDF, just don't try to dress it up like a nobler material!)
Originally Posted by Bob F.
Fake analogue pictures are as pointless as vegetarian sausages.
Anáil nathrach, ortha bháis is beatha, do chéal déanaimh.
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In fact I created software with exactly the described mannerisms, to be executed in real-time for video games, and presented it at GDC over two years ago.
Originally Posted by nicolai
The more important question -- why are those mannerisms important? What do they MEAN, what can they be made to mean other than the same "dreamy mood" platitudes? (the absence of answers points me back to Rexroth and her work in the mid-'70's)
PS: some of us like tofu. What's wrong with alternative packaging?
Last edited by bjorke; 11-18-2007 at 02:51 PM. Click to view previous post history.
Originally Posted by walter23
I'm definitely not threatened by digital imaging and subsequent post graphic design. It's pretty hard to feel threatened by something I have a hard time taking seriously in the first place. I didn't always feel this way, it just sort of evolved as I realized many persons have little in the way of taste or sophistication. Fake food, fake wood, fake bricks, fake rock, fake metal, fake paintings, fake furniture, fake photographs. Nothing one can do about that. When I can't ignore or escape it, I do find the mind set mildly irritating, (phrases like "digital darkroom" to describe computer work stations, etc.) However, more power to this guy, and anybody else who does things they enjoy. Perhaps someday they may be inspired to try the real thing. They probably think working with 8x10 and printing in a dark room like I do, is mildly inane.
The interesting observation is that I doubt you would find me or any other photographer using traditional materials making a huge effort to imitate digital imagery. Sort of validates what I do, in a backhanded sort of way, and says a lot about the current state of the medium, in the way my baby brother used to try to imitate me, when we were kids.
Last edited by JBrunner; 11-18-2007 at 06:15 PM. Click to view previous post history.
Just to be clear: I'm a computer programmer, too. Digital doesn't scare me, and I don't consider it cheating (I even shoot it sometimes). I'm not a purist. The only thing I care about is whether an artist is able to achieve the outcome they're after, and however they get there is their business.
I think digital filtering--at least as far as this is concerned--is at basically the same point as amplifier and speaker simulation is in audio (though perhaps a bit behind): it's sort of close, and is now good enough to be enjoyable in its own right, but it still isn't a convincing stand-in for what it aims to replicate. The example you posted falls into that category for me: it's cool on its own, but is simply not convincing to me either as a dag or a period lens.
It has to mean something? To re-frame your question, what does sharpness mean? What can it be made to mean other than the same "crispness" platitudes? Resolution? Contrast? Tonal scale? Iris shape? DoF? Flare resistance? They're attributes that don't mean anything on their own; we assign meaning to them. Sharpness matters if the photographer wants to make a sharp picture. Warbliness matters if the photographer wants to make a warbly picture. That's it. Tools in a box.
Originally Posted by bjorke
How is digital photography any less real than analog photography? The whole concept of "fake photography" is a pleonasm. Any photograph, be it digital or not, is a representation of a reality, ergo fake. I'm not sticking up for either here, I'm just trying to make a point.
What bothers me most about the article the OP linked to is the whole concept of making an image look like s**t, not the fact that it is done using digital techniques.
Make that as pointless as organic free-ranging vegetarian sausages.
Originally Posted by Andy K