Sunday, 8 March 2009

Proper photographer

Tombstone in All Saints Church, Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK

A number of comments have made me think this weekend. It concerns shooting film and the various responses that I've come across have made me think of a statement i heard last summer. Last year i was walking along at Blakeney in Norfolk when a man stopped and asked me if i was shooting film. I replied yes and we had a good chat for about ten minutes about cameras and the gentleman's past interest in photography. Just before we parted he said ' It's nice to see a proper photographer'.

An unusual term. Proper photographer. What is that? If you use digital are you an improper photographer? It was meant as a compliment i know but i've had others state similar thoughts. A twitter user recently said that he was impressed that i used film. Why? It's not difficult and i have no trouble getting materials. Film is more forgiving of exposure mistakes than its digital counterpart. Digital has a similar narrow exposure tolerance to transparency film so in many respects digital is harder to shoot than film. Maybe its the physical process of taking an image that they refer too.

Film is here to stay for the time being. It will go but it'll take time before it dies out. Until then i'll continue to shoot film because it offers an interesting alternative to digital. Both mediums have their strengths and weaknesses. I'll continue to use and love both!

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