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The lounge Relax, take a break from photo and camera talk - have a chat about something else for a change. Just keep it clean and polite!

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Eight reasons digital photographers should try film

https://www.zorkiphoto.co.uk/2015/11...tography-film/
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Harold Gough Harold Gough is offline
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Re: Eight reasons digital photographers should try film

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I did so for over 50 years, starting with B/W and progressing to colour reversal, which is the most disciplined of all. As for film consumption, I did a lot of X-Pan wide format.

Harold
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Re: Eight reasons digital photographers should try film

I probably stopped using film about the time 5MP digital cameras became affordable, but recently the urge got the benefit of me and now I'm using film alongside my digital work flow. Funnily enough, I use digital for my risky shots, meaning if I see something half interesting I use my digital camera for capture to see how it looks in two dimensions. When it comes to more artistic opportunities, I reach for the analogue camera, especially if I have the time to think through all the steps to make sure, as far as possible, the frame is a 'keeper'.
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Re: Eight reasons digital photographers should try film

I would agree with seven of the eight points made. I don't go along with No 7 though as I have never seen the attraction of knowingly using degraded colour film, but each to their own I suppose.

However, the writer brushed over the main benefit of film cameras; namely that the viewfinders tend to be much better and clearer than those found in digital cameras.

My personal favourite is the waist level finder found on most medium format cameras, which in my view is the best aid to composition ever invented.
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Re: Eight reasons digital photographers should try film

I recently attended an analogue workshop and had a 'play' with both a Hasselblad and a Mamiya C330. I'm with you on the waist level finder, I found it to be wonderful compositional tool. Both cameras were a joy to use, and there's something about having 12 exposures to play with, it does sharpen observation, composition and attention to exposure.

I came away knowing I wanted a film camera, and thanks to one of the members here he helped me find the camera model I was looking for. Loving it!
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Re: Eight reasons digital photographers should try film

To "do" film means you need a room or space for an enlarger, dishes and chemicals. Plus an extraction system to remove the smells.

You would not want to take thousands of of film pics in a day because the logistics of handling the film and the printing would be too onerous as well as expensive. Unless you have a darkroom assistant.
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Re: Eight reasons digital photographers should try film

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To "do" film means you need a room or space for an enlarger, dishes and chemicals. Plus an extraction system to remove the smells.

You would not want to take thousands of of film pics in a day because the logistics of handling the film and the printing would be too onerous as well as expensive. Unless you have a darkroom assistant.
Extraction system? To take that lovely smell away?

Other than for mobile speed cameras, film is not the best medium for production line work, although it was used for such applications until fairly recently with (I would argue) poor or at least questionable results. Think about the thousands of school photographs that were taken on film, and the 'Beach Photographers' who used to snap away at the seaside. Would anyone dare do that now?

No; the film photography that I am thinking about is a slow, considered process, ideally using medium or large formats to capture very high quality images. And for me, the camera must have a waist level finder!
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Re: Eight reasons digital photographers should try film

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To "do" film means you need a room or space for an enlarger, dishes and chemicals. Plus an extraction system to remove the smells.

You would not want to take thousands of of film pics in a day because the logistics of handling the film and the printing would be too onerous as well as expensive. Unless you have a darkroom assistant.
The most important provision is a dust-free environment.

Harold
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Re: Eight reasons digital photographers should try film

Another plus, the 2nd hand value of film cameras fell through the roof when digital became the camera of choice for many. What were considered to be the top end professional models years ago are now quite affordable on the second hand market - and they still work, just a CLA and you're good for years of shooting. Also forget about depreciation, in fact if you buy wisely the value will increase quite likely.
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Re: Eight reasons digital photographers should try film

I used to be quite pleased with some of the transparencies and prints I made, before I 'went digital': but looking at them now, they don't compare with my digital images.

I think digital cameras have driven up our expectations, and when we review old pre-digital photo's we realise just how far we've come.

Jim
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Re: Eight reasons digital photographers should try film

9. The joy of getting damaged originals back from the lab or publisher.
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Re: Eight reasons digital photographers should try film

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9. The joy of getting damaged originals back from the lab or publisher.
I think that's #10 on the list, Nigel has already claimed #9

Some of the best images I've seen were taken using film, not out of choice necessarily, but sadly the photographers who made the iconic pictures have long since departed, along with the opportunity to see if they could produce as good with digital. I think most would agree that Elliot Erwitt walks on water, photographically. He shoots digital for professional assignments, and still uses film for his amateur work. Well into his 80's he still has and uses a darkroom. Remarkable!
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Re: Eight reasons digital photographers should try film

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Originally Posted by Jim Ford View Post
I used to be quite pleased with some of the transparencies and prints I made, before I 'went digital': but looking at them now, they don't compare with my digital images.

I think digital cameras have driven up our expectations, and when we review old pre-digital photo's we realise just how far we've come.

Jim
That raises an interesting point. Over the years I sold quite a few Cibachrome prints, one of the most popular being a shot of a Red Fox. In its day Cibachrome was regarded as the print version of Kodachrome, pretty archival.

A decade or so ago I scanned the original photo of the Fox and made an ink jet print using archival paper and pigment based inks. There was so much more detail in the scan/ink jet print I decided to replace the Cibachrome version that had been hanging on my parents wall for a decade or maybe a little more. On unmounting the Cibachrome I discovered it had faded quite badly despite the products reputation for being archival. According to independent testing the ink jet print with that paper and ink combination should be good for 92 years if hung out of direct sunlight and displayed under glass.
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Re: Eight reasons digital photographers should try film

The thread was a suggestion to 'try' film, not by any means a form of encouragement to ditch digital. It's widely known that digital is more convenient and has superior quality at 35mm and smaller. Medium format and large format are a different matter, at which point film cameras are relatively inexpensive and produce astonishing results. To match this digitally you would need a healthy bank balance.

Above all have fun whatever medium you choose, as discussed in https://www.35mmc.com/17/06/2017/sme...mes-just-play/ for example
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Re: Eight reasons digital photographers should try film

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Originally Posted by Jim Ford View Post
I used to be quite pleased with some of the transparencies and prints I made, before I 'went digital': but looking at them now, they don't compare with my digital images.

I think digital cameras have driven up our expectations, and when we review old pre-digital photo's we realise just how far we've come.

Jim
That is very true. The image quality provided by modern digital cameras far surpasses that of 35 mm film, which is why, apart from rare exceptions, I only use 35 mm for B&W these days. I am not sure when this crossover happened, but I would say the E1's image quality was probably a match for almost any 35mm film at the time.

Back in those early days of digital Nikon stated that a 35 mm negative could yeild a maximum of about 5 MP of useful data, whilst reversal films could yeild around double this amount. But as Ricoh says, medium and large formats bring a whole new dimension to the quality achievable with film.

Howver, what i wanted to say here is that I don't go out into the countryside or wherever simply to take photographs. I go out to enjoy the scenery and fresh air first-hand, not to spend an entire day behind a camera. That is entirely possible with digital at virtually zero cost, but I wouldn't enjoy it. I would far rather spend less time framing stunning scenery on a big waist level finder, capturing the limited number of exposures that are possible with film, knowing that every last detail will be captured.
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