THE BIG FILM AND DIGITAL DEBATE
I sure this has being covered a million times (I think that's a Whiggle Byte in digital terms) But I would like to explain my reasons for still shooting film in this Digital made overseas in poor countries world...
I do tire of people going on about which is better Film or Digital, and before I begin this rant I would just like to say that I don't think either is better than the other, they are just different and full fill different criteria. But here's my case....
There are many reasons I shoot film. The first and foremost is that I need something permanent, something that I know will not change. For example, I have projects I started seven years ago shot on film. Now if that had been on a digital camera it would probably of been 3 to 5 mega pixels. They even have phones that do that now. The technology is moving so quick people cant keep up. I know that if I scan a 5/4 neg the quality will knock the socks off what can be produced by Canon and Nikon.
The second main reason is regarding exposure. Most of my work consists of long, long exposures and this is something which is just not possible with any digital camera due to the amount of noise build up and heat produced. I have shot in -20 degrees and +120 degrees, again something I am not sure all those micro chips could handle. Its a bit like an old Land Rover and a new Range Rover. If one of those chips fails the whole car shuts down and reliability for me is a must. Just a box and a lens thank you.
I should also mention print stability. All my work is C-Type. I know this will last some time because of all the Misrach and Meyerwitz vintage prints I have on my wall (of course I am joking) my point being there is proof that this process lasts (at least a couple of decades) What I do have on one of my walls is an inkjet print that was done a month ago and looks like a faded haircut portrait in a barbers shop..I heard the other day that the Toys 'R' Us image of Mr Gursky has begun to deteriorate, not good considering the staggering costs involved. This would be like buying cold bullion and discovering it was foil covered chocolate...What I have been dong is scanning my negs and getting the image projected digitally but using the C Type processing which is in my opinion the best of both worlds.
Here is something to think about. When photography first began (I would like to think this was by the English and not the French) people used huge cameras with big glass negatives. Over time the format got smaller, 10/8, 5/7, 5/4, 120, 35mm , 110, James Bond, and now there is no film at all.
My final point is this, in a time of 'Can you make her have less pores on her skin' and 'I lost six stone in a day' images. I believe there is a certain honesty with shooting film, what some would call 'A Purist', however, if I had the chance to look more handsome (an impossible task) I would probably say absolutely..
I almost forgot. The picture at the top is by Gustave Le Gray shot in 1857. I believe its printed from two negatives, one of the sky and one of the sea...Is nothing sacred.....