From an artist's statement by Edward Weston for an exhibit in 1930: "The photographs exhibited, with the exception of the portrait studies, are contact prints from direct 8x10 negatives, made with a rectilinear lens costing $5, . . ." The Rapid Rectilinear lens was designed in 1866, and was obsolete long before this exhibit. Weston did use some state-of-the-art lenses, but was more interested in results than equipment.
Dang it. It's soft. I am humbled once again.
Originally Posted by Bill Burk
It's good, though.
I remember a really good salesman back in the 70's at a camera shop here, who would inform those equipment-centric guys who thought nothing but Nikon and Nikkor could measure up, that W. Eugene Smith took his famous Minamata image with a Minolta SR-T 101.
I do use a digital device in my photographic pursuits when necessary.
When someone rags on me for using film, I use a middle digit, upraised.
Not sure what this has to do with medium format, but I'll play.
I live and work in a world famous town that is chock full of egos but in terms of fellow pro photogs, no egos towards each other. As for the people asking me about gear, it happens and depending on how much I am concentrating is how I respond.
A front page newspaper article on a show of my new work runs tomorrow, I think I kept the ego at bay, we'll see, LOL!
"I'm the freak that shoots film. God bless the freaks!" ~ Mainecoonmaniac ~
Permit me to observe that ego is rampant amongst digital photographers who somehow think their cameras, doing all the thinking for them, are better than a photographer with 30 years' experience and knowing exactly how the image will turn out even if blindfolded. Maybe besides the point, but how does medium format relate to ego, prey tell? It might be a bit more prevalent amongst LF and ULF users.
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My encounters with other photographers has been mostly positive. Even when they are shooting digital, I've always been respectful of their choice- usually they'll say that just don't want the hassle of film any more . Most times they begin with that's a REALLY BIG camera you got there (RB-67) and we'll have a nice little discussion about their camera and the days when they used film. and if they ask why I'm carrying the dinosaur I tell them I love the big slides I get out of it. One time they even took a picture of me with the camera. Even when they don't talk, I've had people look at me with the camera and nod their head and smile. You should see when I use the Stereo Realist.
If I ever got a negative attitude out of anyone--screw them-- I'm out for MY enjoyment-- not their approval,and my slide will be around a LOT longer than his stuff anyway
But when you talk about the photo stores, you are dead on. There's an atmosphere of why are you still using this crap--get with digital so we don't have to carry this perishable film and chemicals that cost a fortune to ship. When I started maybe 5 years ago everyone had the film stored in refrigerators, now it gets treated like packs of cigarettes laying on the shelves (all except one NY store) And forget about chemistry --if they don't have it they say it's not available to order it for you(which is why I stated making my own stuff)
Originally Posted by R Paul
Oh, don't start this old pagan on photo stores lecturing me as to why I am "still using film". The local store near me has sold out to digital hook, line and sinker: nothing for analogue at all, nor will anything be ordered in if it is for film photography; chemicals on the shelf are out of date, boxes of Ilford film are dusty and dirty. Only the display cases are cleaned daily because, "nobody uses film anymore, only you!".
Funny that you mention W. Eugene Smith - as complex a man as there ever was. He reportedly had a huge ego and often ignored editors' instructions when taking an assignment, taking a year or more on some projects that were to take only a month.
Originally Posted by lxdude
I thought that I read that the Minamata image was taken with either borrowed equipment or gear that was donated to him by Minolta. I'll need to look it up again.
He also was known to drop in on people, asking for money, argued relentlessly with his editors and took some of the greatest photos that I've ever seen. I've always found his work to be inspirational.
He was a tremendous artist but reportedly a very difficult person at times.
Edward Weston also was a complex person, more or less abandoning his family for long periods in pursuit of his art. Enormous talent, but probably should have stayed single. He met up with Tina Mondotti, a photographer who developed a following, perhaps because of her relationship with Weston more than her own talent.
I think we all have stories to tell, and I hope that I've become a better photographer (and better person) through the years, although maybe that's debatable. When you're young, you do need to be brash and bold, because that's how you take risks and strive to be better.
But you need to temper that always. Want to read about an ego that's slipped off of the edge? Read about noted author Buzz Bissinger's shopping addiction.
I bought a new digital camera recently and while the assistant was serving me the manager sidled over and said "You do know that doesn't take film, don't you?". He collects cameras and I buy a lot of film in his shop - not a problem for either of us.
Originally Posted by Poisson Du Jour
I'm very fortunate that most of the sales folk at my main camera store are film-heads themselves so I never get guff from them for shooting the Rollei, and they're very chuffed when I have contact prints from one of my LF/ULF cameras to show. I've been using the Rollei a lot lately, and out in public the majority of reactions I get to it are extremely positive (the most common question is "how old is that", followed by requests to take a picture of me holding it). I've been seeing a lot less of the photographer-to-photographer ego/disrespect lately and I don't have a good explanation for it -maybe it's just that digital is no longer so new that people feel the need to justify their investment in it.