Sharing experience, advice, and photos to all with the shutterbug.

Posts tagged “holga

Digital and Film

You know what the difference is between a professional career photographer and an enthusiastic hobbyist is? Patience. I learned how to shoot originally with film, and when photography was a multiple-cost process of buying film, shooting and then paying for development you made your shots count. I love digital. I love how it’s finally maturing and how it’s bringing out a lot of talent in a lot of people. But as far as shooting goes, I hate how fast it is. People will shoot hundreds of photos and then dig out “the one” from this pile of what’s otherwise junk. When I shot film, I made each shot count. When doing portraits I would talk to my subject, get to know them and photograph them as they got comfortable. When I did still life I would study what I was shooting carefully and study the light and make it perfect before I even took a single frame. Ask anyone who has shot with a 4×5 camera – when it costs you about $8.00 per picture you slow down and work meticulously to make the image the best it can possibly be before you take that picture.

An old 35mm photograph from my "youth"

My advice to you is to put that digital camera away for a day and shoot some film. Pick up a Holga. There’s something very organic about loading, winding, spooling, developing, washing and printing your film by hand. You will learn a lot from this process and it may make you enjoy your digital photography even more so.


The new Polaroid

I have spoken of camera phones in the past, stating that they would be the death of the Photojournalism field. While this may not happen anytime real soon, I think that the availability and accessibility to the general public has greatly impacted
“Real news” brought to you by the people. However, it now seems to be affecting the fine art field as well. Photographers like Chase Jarvis and Lisa Wiseman use iPhones for fine art projects and others have even used camera phones to do professional work. This at first did not make much sense to me. Why would professional photographers advocate the use of low-resolution, slow shutter-speed cameras that any 15-year old girl would just toss in her purse? The answer is simple: Camera Phones are the next Polaroids and Holgas.

Photos by Lisa Wiseman

The low-tech-no-extras approach to photography is very refreshing. Most camera phones are in the range of 2-5 megapixels, and they don’t exactly have a large color palette or much dynamic range – but the DO produce unique, one of a kind images. And now it’s easier than ever to put those photos where people can see them on sites like Tumblr and Flickr with new technologies and smart phones.

Photo by Robert Schultze

Be sure to check out the Some-Photog-Tumblog for more camera phone photos.

Show me your pics!

So many photographers I know take hundreds of photos, some of them great, some of them not-so-great… and nobody ever sees them. These photographers usually have a digital archive or several boxes full of negatives. And they say that nobody appreciates what they do, and nobody ever sees their work.
Well, thanks to the internet, they no longer have any excuses. Websites like flickr and Tumblr allow you to easily share photos as easy as sending a text-message or e-mail. And if you have a cellphone that has a camera, boy are you selling yourself short. Cellphone cameras used to be a gimmick, something that pros and amateurs alike scoffed at, but now with social media and the internet, photographers like Lisa Wiseman and many others are using phone-cameras to promote themselves and even do work with them. The technology is improving. More megapixels, higher resolution – Though not as customizable as a DSLR, the simplicity and availability of phone-cameras are beginning to be compared to the likes of the Holga, the Polaroid and other cult cameras. And the ability to share the photos instantly is truly changing the medium. Even websites that don’t focus exclusively on photography like Facebook or even Twitter are being used to show the world the photography of the every-day-man.
I know for awhile I was frustrated because if I wanted to take photos and share them it was a process – I had to lug my camera-bag around and upload the photos to my computer and then finally to the internet – but now it takes almost no effort. I carry around my phone-camera and snap pics whenever I want, and I feel it’s good for me as a photographer – it keeps me sharp and aware. Now go and put that phone-camera to work and show the world your photos!

And be sure to check out the Some-Photog-tumblog!

Nostalgia is an un-productive thing

Film is dead. There, I said it. There are some hardcore people out there who still believe it to be superior to it’s digital counter-part, but those people are not making any money. Digital is the place to be in today’s professional world of photography.

I admit, I own a Nikon F2, a Holga, and a few Polaroids. I love film in all of it’s formats, But these days, there is no real practical (or commercial) use for it. Film has a certain look or feel to it, as does using a low end camera like a Holga. But really unless you feel like using a damaged lens, you can get these same effects right in photoshop.

Before and after photoshop. Look familiar?

Before and after photoshop. Look familiar?

People may argue “It’s not the same!” and from a certain standing, they are right. But it’s cheaper, and isn’t that what every thing is about these days?

The Polaroid Software

The Polaroid Software

For those of you who cried the day Polaroid discontinued it’s film, you should keep an eye on Polaroid.Net, it’s a great free piece of software that when you import your JPEG’s, it spits them out in a remarkable recreation of a polaroid photo – complete with a  flash, a sound and the option to “Shake it” with the mouse to speed up the development time. The finished pictures even have thumb-prints and dirt on them. The images are fairly high-res considering that it’s a beta, but from the looks of the website there’s a lot more to come.

Sorry to be so tough on you guys, like I said, film is great – but if you want to be in the game you need to accept that you will not make it in that world if you try. But I’m sure that wherever film is, it’s looking upon us and smiling.