Why I’m going back to film

I love digital photography. I love being able to process a file in software to develop a photo. I love not getting my clothes stained from developing chemicals. I love how little it costs, after purchasing the gear of course. I love not being limited to 24 or 36 frames. I love being able to choose to have a photo in colour or black and white or both. I love not being limited to a single ISO. I love auto focus.

What’s not to love about digital photography? A few things actually which is why I am going back to film photography.

I’m not trying to argue that film is better than digital, that shooting film makes you a better photographer, or any other reason. Everyone has their own reasons for choosing film over digital or choosing digital over film. Film isn’t better than digital and digital isn’t better than film. There are plenty of reasons and arguments to be made for shooting film, these are my personal reasons for switching from digital to film.

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Famous Photographers Tell How: Henri Cartier-Bresson

Henri Cartier-Bresson needs no introduction to anyone even remotely interested in photography. He is the photographers photographer and has been called the greatest photographer of the twentieth century, although HCB would call bull shit on the greatest photographer accolade. When HCB talks about photography photographers listen and listen you should to HCBs wise words.

This interview with Henri Cartier-Bresson has been taken from the 1958 Famous Photographers Tell How LP.

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One thing that I have learned…

“Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst” – Henri Cartier-Bresson

Quality comes from quantity.

Wether or not this is true for anyone else is debatable. I know my first 10,000 photos were undoubtedly my worst, they were terrible and utterly forgettable. The point is that it takes a lot of practice to become any good at photography and The only way to get good is to make photos… lots of photos.

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Photographers make photos

A painter starts with a blank canvas and paints a scene with their brushes and paints. An author starts out with a blank page and writes a scene with their pen and paper or computer. A photographer starts out with a complete scene, the photographer’s job is to put a frame around that scene and make a photo with the camera to give a sense of order and meaning to what they see. Or do photographers simply just take a photo of what they see?

‘You don’t take a photograph, you make it.’
– Ansel Adams

Is there a difference between ‘taking’ and ‘making’ a photo? Indeed there is. I have thought a lot about taking photos and making photos, this is my conclusion.

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One thing that I have learned…

Photography is, amongst other things, about learning, and over the 13 years that I have been shooting I have learned a lot about photography. Most of the things I have learned I have learned in the last year since I have gotten more serious about my photography. Learning is also the main reason I started this blog, to share what I have learned about photography.

One thing that I have learned… is a series about things that I have learned about photography or through photography. This first post in the series is about Only showing your best photos.

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Dangerous ideas

I love the internet, I also hate the internet, it’s as wonderful as it is terrible. The best thing about the internet, that it is open and democratic, is also the worst thing about the internet.

Sometimes I loath the openness and democracy of the internet because it allows any one to publish anything, the only requirement is a PC with an internet connection. The low barrier for entry means that some really awful things are born on the internet. There are also some truly great web sites, tools and information available on the internet. Even with all of the terrible web sites with their click bait and trollish comments the internet is still a wonderful place.

The problem with most photography web sites, at least the ones I have come across, is that they are poorly designed (and I use the word designed very loosely, designed is a strong word for some web sites), they are full of click bait articles that are poorly written, and trollish comments. What’s even worse than bad design, poor prose, and trollish comments, is that a lot of photography web sites peddle the message that gear and Photoshop will make you a better photographer. The idea that gear and Photoshop can make you a good photographer is a dangerous idea.

Lets get one thing straight, gear and Photoshop will most definitely not make you a better photographer.

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