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  1. #71
    chuck94022's Avatar
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    Jan 2005
    Los Altos, CA
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Edwards
    If I may; according to Webster's New World Dictionary, digital photography is not a specialized form of photography. It is a different animal altogether.

    pho-tog-ra-phy n. The art or process of producing images of objects upon a photosensitive surface (as film in a camera) by the chemical action of light or other radiant energy.

    Key words here: "photosensitive", "chemical action"

    Digital receptors are interpreters, not the end result. They operate by way of interpreting color response into strings of 0's and 1's. There are something on the order of a 8 layers of separation from the final image and the light source. In other words, digital imaging is not even remotely close to actual photography, which has no separation from the original light source.

    With all due respect, Scott, it doesn't matter what Webster says. I can assure you that the next time they revise that dictionary they'll have an updated definition to include digital photography. Webster's Dictionary is not some binding document for the world. Besides, I can certainly make a strong technical argument that CCDs are indeed photosensitive -they react to photons quite readily.

    And, by the way, your print has a couple of degress of separation from the original light source, especially if you use transparencies. To wit: original exposure produces a latent image in the film. But during development, that image is chemically treated with a reversal process, so that the image produced at the end comes from a chemical reversal process, not from the original light - that image was lost during processing. So you are now a degree away.

    This image is used in an enlarger with a different light source, or contact printed with a different light source, to produce a print. That print is now two degrees from the original light source.

    A developed image is a chemical interpretation of the original image by virtue of development control. Pushing, pulling, and chemistry choices all play a part in the interpretaton of the original exposure and separate the original from the processed result.

    Add lith masking, etc., and you have an image pretty well removed from the original light source.

    However, with all that said, the processes are certainly different, and the introduction of digital steps at any point along the way has the potential to devalue the result, because digital processes are so readily automated and perfectly reproduced.

    If, in the proposed nomenclature (which I like), an image is DDD, then its value to an investor has got to be nearly zero, because it can be reproduced like a Big Mac.

    On the other hand, if the image is AAA, (and the image is of high quality, of course), there is significantly higher intrinsic value to the investor because, presumeably, the image is a hand made original. Of course, even in the AAA realm, it is possible to produce a large number of identical analog images that could reduce the value of an individual instance.

    By the way, I would add one element to the nomenclature: H, for hybrid, or a mix of digital and analog techniques. In processing, for example, someone may do a contact print with a digital negative. I might suggest that be designated a Hybrid process. Thus a platinum print might be designated AAA or AHA.


  2. #72

    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Multi Format
    Yes, I stand corrected.

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