Friday, 12 February 2010

Why I Like Film Update

Having had some time to use my 10D, I can now say I like both Film and digital, I enjoy processing raw files using adobe lightroom. After learning about the mega pixel myth (i.e. theres a lot more factors impacting on the final image then just how many pixels you have, such as sensor size, Lens etc) I had the image above, which I took over the xmas holidays enlarged to a 12x18inch print and was impressed with the results. Its true what they say about the mega pixel myth. I shot it in raw, tweaked it a bit in adobe lightroom and saved it as a full size jpeg before having it enlarged.

However I have a lot of reservations regarding b/w images from digital files, iv been experimenting with b/w conversions from my 10D and find it difficult getting monochrome images anywhere as near as I can with film. Maybe if I had a top quality photo printer and the best paper money can buy I would see a difference, but all that is extra cost. Considering I enjoy the traditional wet process method, and get far better results for b/w work, it make more sense for me to simply use my film cameras. I will use both digital and film in the future, at the end of the day its the person behind the camera that takes the image, not the camera itself!

I still don't understand this constant obsession with image quality amongst digital photographers, of course its a consideration, everyone wants nicely exposed sharp images, but at the end of the day the image content, framing, subject etc should be the main concern, even more so if you consider photography as art, some people believe sharpness is overrated, I remember watching a t.v. programme about the photographer David
Gepp shooting Venice with one of his home made pin hole cameras, with fantastic results, great artwork. The use of diffusers were very popular at one time for Portraits. When I decided to check out digital photography, I did some research to determine which model to buy, (if money was no object I suppose I would have just got the latest high end pro model) and came across some reviews of different models, on one someone had taken the same image with various models at various ISO settings, then blown up a particular small area to compare noise levels, Hello, whats all that about, the human eye and brain just cannot do such things in the real world! People don't see with their eyes, they see with the brain, the eyes just been like the lens of a camera. That's why in my opinion this obsession with image quality is bull crap, you get the same thing with new T.V. systems now, blue ray, sting ray, High definition, super duper high definition etc, etc. If people had superhuman vision, and Opticians became jobless overnight there might be some point to it. In the met museum of modern art in N.Y. City, you will find photographic prints hanging taken over 50 years ago, not because of image quality but because of the subject content.

The late great A.Adams foresaw the digital era:
"I eagerly awaite new concepts and processes. I beleive that the electronic image will be the next major advance. Such systems will have their own inherent and inescapable structural characteristics, and the artist and functional practitioner will again strive to comprehend and control them" - Ansel Adams forward to his book 'The Negative' published January 1980.