Film, Still.

18 thoughts on “Film, Still.”

  1. Processed the way you do (which I like a lot), there’s not a lot of difference between digital and film… even the Huawei pic looks quite similar…apart from the apparent grain perhaps.

    It’s not so much the fact to use film or digital, it’s what you do with the results and your style. But for me, just as you say, film is tangible, film is real. It restricts you, it forces you to accept it’s limits and that’s the point of film. You have to work inside it’s limits, be it ISO, number of frames, cost….

    What made me go away from digital cameras was the paralysis of choice as I wrote here

    1. I very much agree and it is certainly part of what I’m finding. With film, I get annoyed with the ‘refueling’ if you know what I mean. Feels like I always need something or am always in search of something I have to buy. That is the only part of it that drives me mad, ha.

      1. Film gear is too cheap, at least the Canon FD stuff I often use and the manual compact cameras I like. So you always want to buy, hoard…. but again that gives you choice and choice is BAD!

        I try to limit myself now. I have a Leica IIIa (currently being CLA’d), a Canon AE-1 and A-1 and an Olympus XA2 and Trip 35… that’s all and will stay all.

        I might just replace the Canons with an M2 or M3 one day….

    2. I love the M3. It is so much nicer than either the M6 or M5 I used in the past. Just feels so much smoother. It is a dog though, and has been through a lot. The problem for me isn’t the gear is the refueling in terms of film and chemicals. That is what makes me crazy, ha.

      1. Yes, film IS expensive…. but Rodinal is not and as I do mostly stand development I use 3ml per roll… a bottle lasts a long time. Call it the price of freedom from digital! I can live with it.

        Sometimes I regret the space all this takes up at home. A big box of stuff for developing b&w or color, a scanner, and soon the enlarger that sits in the cellar for the moment with it’s stuff… Compare that to an SD card or two… hmmm

        But I will stay strong! I love film!

      2. True, I’m sure. Unfortunately here in Korea D76 is about the cheapest one can find and it is only sold in powder. Quite the pain and some I push my film I can’t really do 1:1. The results aren’t very good ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

  2. I can see a different look to most of your images lately, less contrasty I guess, less blacks. Maybe this is to do with you moving to film or maybe it is simply intentional, certainly noticeable tho.

    1. Yeah, honestly I am sick of the high contrast black and white fake Daido Moriyama look. It is being done by too many people and done to cover up shite images. For me, I think my brain thought my old film photos were more contrasty but when I actually compare them to digital I realized I was over processing the digital images for sure. Anyway, the photos here are supposed to sort of mimic the film ones from the post so that is probably why they all kinda match. I am happy with this look though, to be honest.

  3. Hi Josh. Interesting post.

    At the end of the day, I believe the attraction of film remains the same: the feeling it is a scarce, therefore more precious, good; the physicality of it, same as with paper vs kindle books. Physical has a sense of presence, permanence and value that digital never will have.
    And I would not dismiss that as unimportant self-deception. Illusion is reality. It alters the way your brain thinks about the images you are taking, or the pleasure you enjoy in taking (making) them.

    Still, output-wise, all we can see of your (and 99.999% of other people’s) work is scans on a screen. So even your film output really goes through a digital process as far as we are concerned. Which makes the distinction of medium far less important than the output itself.
    You know how to process digital with the same aesthetic imprint of your analog work, enough to make the two virtually indistinguishable. Your visual signature is strong enough that it is not significantly influenced by the tool you are using at a given time.
    So at the end of the day, what you use is your choice, but what we see is you, no matter what.

    As for abandoning the Daidoesque contrasts, I agree with you. I like your recent choice of slightly warmer tones, by the way.

  4. Film? Digital? It doesn’t matter unless you want it to. I shot film for many years before going all digital. There is no argument. Physicality? Once you print your images it’s there. Preciousness? Children are precious. If you think photography is, you shouldn’t be a photographer or an artist.

    Leave the argument on how it is done for those who believe in self deception. Find your place, make your stand. Say what you got to say in your life, in your images if that is what you do. That is all that matters.

  5. Hi Josh, always enjoy your blog and instagram posts. Just a quick question: do you use ND filters shooting during daylight? Thanks.

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