Upload & Sell: On
i have a number of very dynamic air to airs of Charlie that haven't been scanned. I'll send them off and post them forthwith. I just had the film/digital discussion with one of my new clients. I equate it with the people who still like vinyl v. CD's, purely a personal preference. Occasionally i hear someone wax nostalgic about vinyl, all I can recall is the hours spent with anti-static guns, cloths, solutions, and still hearing pop and snap.
Having been a very early adopter of digital, i was aware of it's limitations, using it in those situations where it offered an advantage, generally in the areas of expediency and ease of manipulation. As digital matured my film to digit ratio gradually shifted to the digital side, now being 100%. Are there nights where I long to drop a bag of film off at the lab and let someone else do the heavy lifting? Sure. When you really think about it though, film was a lot of work too, buying it fresh, keeping it refrigerated, handling thousands of rolls, sheets, etc, worrying about something going south during processing. I used to tether a LowePro bag to a seat in the photo platform and literally throw 36 exposure canisters like spent 50 cal casings.
The control we have with digital as we know it today, is nothing short of amazing. That master suite image I crafted yesterday took three hours. Had I been shooting 4x5, putting that image to bed would have consumed the better part of a day and several hundred dollars of Polaroid and 4x5 sheets, and I still would not have ended up with an image that had the feel of that final capture.
I completely understand the desire to return to our roots and practice the pure craft of photography a la Ansel and the boys, but for commercial work, digital is a Godsend. I hung on to my Sinar and my Blads thinking that someday I'd venture back to a purer form of deliberate photography, and I admire Jeff for the discipline, but I finally realized that that ship had sailed for me personally. Maybe the decades of the uncertainty and cumbersome volatility of film took the shine off.
From an economic perspective, I've never understood the film/digital argument. My average film/processing tab in the hayday of film was easily 140K. Didn't take me long to do that math.
Now, is there something right and magical about summoning one's skill and intuition, exposing a scene carefully and deliberately, then waiting for the product to emerge from the soup? Absolutely! Stretching out a 120 roll of Velvia, or a 4x5 sheet, on a color corrected light table is a cathartic moment for sure. You either had the chops and got what you were after, or you learned something and set out to try it again. No 5 stop either way latitude safety net. Yes that harkens back to a day when men were men..................and sheep were afraid