2/6/09 - Photography is more than Digital

Photography is more than Digital

"It's not the camera that takes the picture, it's the Photographer" is something I heard a lot in college about photography. I now say "It's not what camera you have, it's how you use it". Photography should be more about telling a story and creating an emotion than about megabytes, dynamic ranges, and hyper focal lengths. In this age of digital photography have we forgotten what makes photography so special. Now don't get me wrong, I love the latest and great technological advancements. I own an amazing digital camera which boggles my mind every time I use it. I work with RAW images and shoot for HDR. I still however love film, a friend I see a little these days but I still appreciate.

A couple of weeks ago a reporter called who was doing an article on things that technology have taken over and he wanted to talk to me about film. I told him film was not dead and would have long life. It's actually becoming trendy. Even professional photographers are offering weddings done with film to give them the vintage look and actually some people like the look of pictures from film better. A similar thing happened when color film came out. People thought that black and white photography would go away. Color was so much better than black and white. In 1998 there were more black and white images taken than ever before. Film will not be the imaging solution for everyone but we will have film for many years to come.

I guess I'm feeling a little overwhelmed by all the technology these days. There are basic rules for taking good pictures and technology is making those rules less important. For example, when taking a picture it is important to properly hold your camera so it's steady. That way you don't get blurry pictures. Technology has addressed that with image stabilization and more light sensitive sensors. Heck now-a-days just pull out your 26x zoom lens and snap the picture…The camera has dual image stabilization and creates a great picture at 1600 ISO. It's pretty cool but was it a great picture. I'm afraid to many of us are loosing what's really important. The emotion of that defining moment in time.

All is not doom and gloom though. I think we just need to keep in mind what's really important, translating what's in the minds' eye and use our tools to create it. The great thing about photography is that it is infinite. I never seem to master it and it's always changing.