Login or Join Now

Upload your photos, chat, win prizes and much more

Username:
Password:
Remember Me

Can't Access your Account?

New to ePHOTOzine? Join ePHOTOzine for free!

Like 0

Film Or Digital?

Join Now

Join ePHOTOzine, the friendliest photography community.

Upload photos, chat with photographers, win prizes and much more for free!

RobbieJayBarratt

Hi there guys. I have just wrote a blog post on why I prefer film to digital.
Just wondering what you're thoughts are on it?

Which team are you on; Film or Digital?


Look forward to hearing your thoughts.

Robbie.
Click here to read the blog post.

Any feedback on the blog post is more than welcome.

Last Modified By RobbieJayBarratt at 12 Jan 2013 - 1:22 AM
Sponsored Links
Sponsored Links 
12 Jan 2013 - 1:21 AM

Join ePHOTOzine for free and remove these adverts.

widtink
widtink  2406 forum posts Scotland2 Constructive Critique Points
12 Jan 2013 - 9:14 AM

Hey Robbie interesting blog with some very valid points you are obviously very passionate about the subject.As a relatively old fart that was brought up on film and has recently got back into photography via digital i can firmly say DIGITAL for loads of reasons learning the basics of photography is so much easier with digi cause you can see the results immediately and its obvious the impact on the shot.In the old days when you got the prints back (from some crummy lab) even if there was a keeper in the envelope i had forgotten how i achieved thisGrin. Also processing has opened up a whole new world for me, having a darkroom years ago was for the priveleged few lol.I do believe that there is room for both types but to say that digi has "tamed" photography i don't think is fair , it certainly has made it more accessible to more people and for me thats got to be good.Just a few thoughts from a passionate noviceWink

Rod

paulcookphotography

Some interesting comments and very well written.

I started off with film while i was still at school and moved onto digital some 10 or so years later. Film will always be a love of mine (especially medium format), not just for the technical and scientific processes, but for the cameras too. That said, i dont think my photography and art would have advanced quite the way it has if it was not for the digital move.

Digital cameras are a great and easy way to learn as mentioned by widtink (above), but i think you dont really get a true understanding and appreciation for photography untill you try running some film through a camera. There is no checking the screen to see if whatever setting worked. No shooting in RAW so you can 'save' incorrectly exposed images (an huge pet hate of mine is how some use it as an escape route rather than learning how to get it right in the first place). And there is less respect for the art as you can rattle off 100 frames to get just one working image (in digital) without it costing a penny, where on film the processing costs and time involved meant you really had to narrow your margin of error dramatically.

But no matter how folk get in to photography, i'd encourage them to try both film and digital. Either way is good for me.

Its interesting you mention the 'plastic fantastic' cameras. There has been a huge surge in interest in these cameras (and polaroid) in recent years, but i personally find a lot of it very 'samey'. The 'Hipster' style really seems to be largely un-interesting images that are soft and show some light leak or fading (an effect easily produced in photoshop. Without this 'effect' would the image stand up? Largely no. However, i am not knocking that side of photography, as again, its getting them into photography

cameraman
cameraman  11227 forum posts England1 Constructive Critique Points
12 Jan 2013 - 10:56 AM


Quote: At the end of the day, film is how photography started. It's as simple as that.

Quote from your blog, but not true.

widtink
widtink  2406 forum posts Scotland2 Constructive Critique Points
12 Jan 2013 - 11:04 AM

Hey Paul interesting views do you really think there is significantly less respect for the art these days , i have heard this before but iam not sure , aside from the expense side (?elitist) if people are pouring time and effort into creating images no matter what the medium surely we are respecting our passion.

Rod

mdpontin
mdpontin  106016 forum posts Scotland
12 Jan 2013 - 11:22 AM

Well done for identifying what you prefer and standing by it. I don't fully agree with your point of view, though.

Most amateur photographers who used film probably had little or no interest in darkrooms, chemicals, etc. They took their photos, had the film processed by a lab or the local chemist, and that was that. Post-processing might be more prevalent in the digital era (I don't have any statistics), but one major reason for that, if true, is that it's far easier. The barriers to entry are, or at least appear, lower. However, as with film, most of us will try to achieve the best result in-camera.

Film has been "dying" for years now, and yet it's still with us. There are many film enthusiasts. There are many who see value in learning the basic photography skills on a film camera. There are professionals who still prefer film. True, it's no longer the medium used by the majority of everyday "snappers", but it still isn't dead and probably won't be for many years to come. People like yourself play their part too, reviving and maintaining the interest in using the medium of film. True, it might be less easy to get hold of now than it used to be, but there's still a market - if enough people want it, somebody will sell it.

Enjoy your preference. Make the most of it. Celebrate it. Maybe your enthusiasm will encourage more people to give it a try (again).

paulcookphotography


Quote: Hey Paul interesting views do you really think there is significantly less respect for the art these days , i have heard this before but iam not sure , aside from the expense side (?elitist) if people are pouring time and effort into creating images no matter what the medium surely we are respecting our passion.

Rod

Its a contentious issue, but yes, i'd say there is a decline in the respect these days. Because digital photography is seen as 'easier', a large proportion of photographers (or people with cameras, no matter what end of the scale) simply dont use them properly or know that much about them.

When i first got into photography and eventually got an SLR, pretty much anyone i knew with an SLR knew how to use it, what the settings meant, how to work manually and could (with in reason) predict the results they would get. Comparing that with today, where a lot of dSLR owners i have come across have admitted that they really dont know why they get the results they do, or what all the settings on their cameras do. I'm not meaning everyone, obviously, but it seems that digital attracts people that may never have considered an SLR before, but they dont take it any further than the y might have done with a decent compact. Its up to the individual how much they want to get out of photography (or put into it), of course

There is obviously a large amount of people who do put in the time and the effort, and start to become creative and learn the skills of a photographer, but i'm sure we have all seen the likes of those who suddenly become a photographer (whether its a wedding/portraits/local football team/etc photographer) by simply 'having an SLR' that they havent had much experience with.

In the days of film, not many people would have classed themselves as a photographer unless they had an SLR or medium format camera that they were experimental with. Other than that they would happily admit they were a snapper with a compact or whatever. Today, 'snapper' is a bad word even if you have a dSLR that you are using as a glorified compact

RobbieJayBarratt


Quote: At the end of the day, film is how photography started. It's as simple as that.

Quote from your blog, but not true.

I was merely stating a reason, not a fact.

Thanks for the thought and interest guys, keep them coming! Loving reading them all.

keith selmes
12 Jan 2013 - 11:45 AM


Quote: Which team are you on; Film or Digital?

Neither. As per the blog, lots of us do both.

keith selmes
12 Jan 2013 - 12:13 PM


Quote: In terms of firms businesses that still support the film community, like that of Jessops

Jessops gave up on us a long time ago. I don't know if they were still selling any film or offering processing, but there are chemist shops doing that as well. The management at Jessops made the staff clear out the chemicals and processing equipment and go to a minimal range of electronics.

On the other hand, the internet has been a game changer as there is a much wider range of consumables, hardware and services than we ever could have had from local shops. There is also much more information about alternative processes. This has helped a lot.

But the problem is at the source. Polaroid went. Ilford was reborn as Harman, but when they took over Kentmere they stopped making Printing Out Paper. Now Efke has gone, and with it a range of decent, vintage style, low price film, and especially the 127 B&W.
It was on the cards that the old machinery at Efke would eventually break down beyond economic repair, but when it happened it was quite sudden. I've bought a cigar cutter to see if I can cut down and respool 120.

The thing is, if the factories arent making the products, a local shop can't sell them.

Of course it isn't all bad news. There have been some good new film products from the main manufacturers, and there are some projects ongoing for the more special interest stuff, like Impossible and New 55. However, I think we are beginning to see the difficulties that we discussed 10 years ago. Back then we were told "film is dead", and you soon won't be able to get any. We said maybe in 10 years time. Well it's still here, and I expect for the next 10 years as well, but there are certainly three product ranges I was using which are no longer available.

RobbieJayBarratt

Great comment Keith. Summed it up there mate.

Thank you for your response, much appreicated.

MikeA
MikeA  91174 forum posts England
12 Jan 2013 - 3:44 PM

Digital - ever tried Time-lapse photography,108,000 images last trip to Scotland, using Film Wink)

capto
capto e2 Member 21163 forum postscapto vcard United Kingdom6 Constructive Critique Points
12 Jan 2013 - 4:11 PM

Even film was at one time slated for not being as good the glass negatives it replaced. It has always been the same with all new developements. If film has enough niche uses and a demand is maintained it will continue. There are many old crafts still being kept alive by dedicated enthusiasts who do it for the pleasure they derive from it. As for film v digital I think the argument as to which is better is pointless, do which pleases you the most.
As an old codger my colours are firmly on the digital mast, because it gives me more pleasure.

kodachrome
12 Jan 2013 - 4:42 PM

I was brought up on film from the early 60's, mostly Kodachrome, Agfa Chrome and Fujichrome.
I learnt how to process Ektachrome E6 and loved it.

When you shoot a particular film for a long time like I did with Kodachrome and Ektachrome, you get to know the film's quirks and its limitations for the subject you are taking. You learnt where to use exposure comp when needed and all the other settings.
I now shoot digital but I still enjoy and get a kick out of 35-mm. I loved the colour reproduction of a slide when projected and unlike digital, you can't fiddle or enhance it beyond reality. You got what you took and it was up to you to get it right. I don't think there is an argument in favour of film, digital will always win now, but there is a certain charm, elegance and colour depth about a colour film, especially colour slide E6 that is not seen on a digital image.

Pete

mikehit
mikehit  56487 forum posts United Kingdom9 Constructive Critique Points
12 Jan 2013 - 11:09 PM


Quote: Its a contentious issue, but yes, i'd say there is a decline in the respect these days. Because digital photography is seen as 'easier', a large proportion of photographers (or people with cameras, no matter what end of the scale) simply dont use them properly or know that much about them.

When i first got into photography and eventually got an SLR, pretty much anyone i knew with an SLR knew how to use it, what the settings meant, how to work manually and could (with in reason) predict the results they would get. Comparing that with today, where a lot of dSLR owners i have come across have admitted that they really dont know why they get the results they do, or what all the settings on their cameras do. I'm not meaning everyone, obviously, but it seems that digital attracts people that may never have considered an SLR before, but they dont take it any further than the y might have done with a decent compact. Its up to the individual how much they want to get out of photography (or put into it), of course

I think you are confusing 'respect' with complexity and black arts. What about all those people who bought the point and shoots of the 70s, 80s and 90s? The only reason that they did not buy SLRs was because SLRs were bloody expensive in real terms and as with all consumer electronics the cost has plummeted. At the same time, technological advances have given people chance to get a better results from a camera that is (or can be) as easy to use as a P&S. Did people have less respect for photography when film replaced plates, when 35mm repaced medium format, when chemists offered film developement services instead of doing it yourself, when film cameras were given semi-auto metering, or full auto metering. or lenses were given AF? Absolutley not. But as soon as we have a technology that brings the art to the masses we get loads of pretentious twaddle about 'respect'. The only difference, is people who did not (in your words) 'respect' photography were frozen out of the hobby. now at least they have a fighting chance.

Photography is about light, not the gear. Respect for photography is to my mind nothing to do with the gear - whether film or digital, it means nowt if you can't master the light and the moment. That is the respect people have.

Add a Comment

You must be a member to leave a comment

Username:
Password:
Remember me:
Un-tick this box if you want to login each time you visit.