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  1. #21
    Thomas Bertilsson's Avatar
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    I totally agree that a respectful approach is needed. After all, it is ALL photography, and no approach is better than the other. Just different.

    I will say, however, that it took me about five years to become a decent darkroom printer, and it took me about two weeks to become a decent inkjet printer.

    The difference, I think (and this is my opinion), is that when you're shooting film you are almost 100% responsible for the results. You use tools that are rudimentary and tangible, hand tools, basically, AND it's a process that takes a long time whether you get a good print or not.
    Digital can take time too, and for some it might require as much time as the darkroom, but once you learn a work flow it still baffles me that anybody would find it difficult to get an inkjet print right - especially from a nicely exposed digital capture. No joke or ill meant comment, but I honestly think it's almost too easy as long as you have the right materials in a good printer and good software.

    I mean absolutely no disrespect to digital shooters and printers, this is my experience; but my opinion is that darkroom work is much more difficult than a digital work flow.
    With multiple toning techniques, lith printing, selective bleach back and re-development, re-development in lith developer, various stages of using several contrast filters within the same print, getting the exposure and development of film *just* right to eke the maximum possible out of a frame of film, the list goes on and on. It is my feeling that it takes a lot more to arrive at the maximum possible from the darkroom than it does from the computer.
    The results can be blindingly good from digital. I know this. It's how the world spins these days. But I just can't get along with the fact that it takes as much work with digital as it does with film and darkroom. I just will not agree with it.




    Quote Originally Posted by SilverGlow View Post
    Digital can be plug and play the same way shooting film can be too; when one drops off their rolls of exposed film to be developed and printed.

    Digital can be just as hands on as film processing too. They both can require loads of time in the darkroom, masks, layers, dodging, burning, both can require just as much time consuming work in their respective darkrooms.

    One does not require more or less technical acumen, aptitude, drive patience, and curiosity then the other.

    I have convinced MANY digital shooters to use film and they will try film if one does not jab or badmouth digital, and if one sells film for it's look, it's dynamic range, and the awesome anticipation one feels before getting the developed negatives and/or prints.

    A friendly RESPECTFUL approach to digital shooters is a must. Telling them lies about how film is better, or how digital sucks, or that real photographers shoot only film is unproductive, and evidence of one's stupidity.

    I was sold on film by a film shooter that also loved digital but showed me the look, feel, tonal graduations and wider DR that film provides...that caused me to switch to film.

    The way I convince others is by the prints that came from film....that is the strongest argument.
    "Often moments come looking for us". - Robert Frank

    "Make good art!" - Neil Gaiman

    "...the heart and mind are the true lens of the camera". - Yousuf Karsh

  2. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by Christopher Walrath View Post
    Posted wirelessly..

    Yeah, just be visible using film and willing to discuss it.
    As a new-again film user, I couldn't agree more. If you are shooting, let other people take a picture or two. I carry a camera just about everywhere with me and find that people are very curious. I always offer people people to give it a try. Most people tell me that they don't want to waste the film in my camera because "film is expensive." As soon as they release the shutter, they instantly smile. I think letting a stranger burn through a couple frames without looking uptight always reassures people.

    I would also offer to give them advice on where they might buy a camera. Recommend that they go to camera shop you're familiar with. Digital users do everything on the computer these days, especially research and shopping. I think many shoppers have become so accustomed to shopping from their desktop, that they are intimidated by stepping into a physical shop where they'll be "sold" something they don't understand. Obviously, purchasing their first film camera on an auction site can be risky. A camera with a shutter that's off or has light leaks is frustrating enough for most to mentally write off their losses and give up.

  3. #23
    Mainecoonmaniac's Avatar
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    I don't think it's an either or proposition

    Quote Originally Posted by wclark5179 View Post
    "Attracting new film users."

    Gosh, I feel for you; however, please let me tell you this.

    Our TCPPA (Twin Cities Professional Photographers Association) meets each month at a Vocational School located in Eden Prairie, MN. At our last meeting, I visited with an instructor at his office and noticed several D-2 Series Omega Enlargers on a cart. They were taking them out as they came to the conclusion that the future for the young new photographers is to be involved in digital in the capture, process and viewing stages.

    Sorry to be the bearer of this news. But digital has changed photography. If you want to make a living in this industry then you have to go where the bucks are. If you have a day job in another field or income from another source then bless you and go for it.

    Otherwise to advise a new student to go into film as a career is a mistake from several vantage points. Or go into photography as an art or passion, whatever, but don't go into it to make a decent living. It's hard enough as it is w/o throwing out road blocks to achieve some sort of financial success with photography with a film medium.

    Now crucify & have at me for my comments. However, I've done OK in the photography industry.
    I don't think it's an either or proposition. The success a photography business is decided whether he or she shoots film or not. There's nothing wrong with a photographer learning both. I think learning analog photography first will improve a photographer's skill. The business of photography has changed and will continue to change. The successful ones will adapt to markets, equipment and technology of photography and film can be part of the equation of success.

  4. #24
    Christopher Walrath's Avatar
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    Posted wirelessly..

    I like Scott's answer the best.
    Thank you.
    CWalrath

    "Wubba, wubba, wubba. Bing, bang, bong. Yuck, yuck, yuck and a fiddle-dee-dee." - The Yeti

  5. #25

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    Bill,
    Yes, in the commercial world to survive one must use digital.
    Our students cover a wide age range, teen to seniors. Most take it for their own use and those younger ones who do go on in photography realize that to be commercially successful they must do digital, but many continue to use film for their own personal work as they have come to appreciate fine black and white prints.`

    Paul

  6. #26
    wclark5179's Avatar
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    Paul,

    I had tears in my eyes when I saw the Omega enlargers stacked on a cart like excess baggage. So be it.

    Appreciate for your comments.

    And your dedication toward film.

    I still use it as I take at least one film camera for each gig I do.

    Thanks for your thoughts.
    Bill Clark

  7. #27
    SilverGlow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas Bertilsson View Post
    I totally agree that a respectful approach is needed. After all, it is ALL photography, and no approach is better than the other. Just different.

    I will say, however, that it took me about five years to become a decent darkroom printer, and it took me about two weeks to become a decent inkjet printer.

    The difference, I think (and this is my opinion), is that when you're shooting film you are almost 100% responsible for the results. You use tools that are rudimentary and tangible, hand tools, basically, AND it's a process that takes a long time whether you get a good print or not.
    Digital can take time too, and for some it might require as much time as the darkroom, but once you learn a work flow it still baffles me that anybody would find it difficult to get an inkjet print right - especially from a nicely exposed digital capture. No joke or ill meant comment, but I honestly think it's almost too easy as long as you have the right materials in a good printer and good software.

    I mean absolutely no disrespect to digital shooters and printers, this is my experience; but my opinion is that darkroom work is much more difficult than a digital work flow.
    With multiple toning techniques, lith printing, selective bleach back and re-development, re-development in lith developer, various stages of using several contrast filters within the same print, getting the exposure and development of film *just* right to eke the maximum possible out of a frame of film, the list goes on and on. It is my feeling that it takes a lot more to arrive at the maximum possible from the darkroom than it does from the computer.
    The results can be blindingly good from digital. I know this. It's how the world spins these days. But I just can't get along with the fact that it takes as much work with digital as it does with film and darkroom. I just will not agree with it.
    If you shoot digital raw, it's going to take you a heck of a lot longer then 2 weeks to learn how to master the print. With raw you often don't expose "perfectly"....you expose to the right of the histogram then master the image in the darkroom.

    I think that the length of time it takes to master a wet or dry print is not a good metric to judge a medium by.

    Both film and digital take a very long time to learn to do right and at a master level.

    Despite what many may say, both mediums afford the photographer a huge amount of control; one not more then the other.
    Coming back home to my film roots. Canon EOS-3 SLR, Canon EOS 1V SLR, 580ex flash, and 5D DSLR shooter. Prime lens only shooter.

  8. #28
    wclark5179's Avatar
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    "The success a photography business is decided whether he or she shoots film or not. "

    Not anymore.

    Never hear of a client asking for film anymore. Sorry. I feel the same as you but reality is reality.

    As I said, if you have another means of financial support then go for it, otherwise, sooner or later you must face the music.

    "Both film and digital take a very long time to learn to do right and at a master level."

    I find it is a constant learning process! I'm learning everyday! Smiles!
    Bill Clark

  9. #29
    Thomas Bertilsson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilverGlow View Post
    If you shoot digital raw, it's going to take you a heck of a lot longer then 2 weeks to learn how to master the print. With raw you often don't expose "perfectly"....you expose to the right of the histogram then master the image in the darkroom.

    I think that the length of time it takes to master a wet or dry print is not a good metric to judge a medium by.

    Both film and digital take a very long time to learn to do right and at a master level.

    Despite what many may say, both mediums afford the photographer a huge amount of control; one not more then the other.
    In the interest of not trashing this thread I will not keep arguing my point. But I disagree with you. Doesn't mean you're wrong. I just disagree.
    "Often moments come looking for us". - Robert Frank

    "Make good art!" - Neil Gaiman

    "...the heart and mind are the true lens of the camera". - Yousuf Karsh

  10. #30
    David William White's Avatar
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    I like Cesaraugusta's suggestion of showing some work by the masters. Maybe within the context of history, if necessary. But you can explain that it's all still viable (with materials & equipment available), and preferable by many of today's leading fine art photographers -- Burtynsky and Geoffrey James are just two Canadian examples that quickly come to my mind.

    I agree with Bill Clark that the majority of photography from now on will be digital, but there is still a lot of film photography being done, especially by established photographers who are doing just fine with what they are set up to to, so it's not an either/or.

    I'm sure if you show some examples from the masters, there will be a few that, for whatever reason, find it intriguing enough to wade in. Lots of good history to leverage.
    Considerably AWOL at the present time...

    Archive/Blog: http://davidwilliamwhite.blogspot.com

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