How Long…

…until a contemporary large format photographer revisits locations of suicide bombings to show us street scenes that have rebounded from carnage and devastation?

rawalpindi

In other news, Luc Sante sees Rembrandt tones in a “make this digital picture look like black-and-white film” Photoshop filter. Horsesthink on printing. And via horsesthink, cheers to Sze Tsun Leong for keeping the hope (of the analog c-print) alive.

9 thoughts on “How Long…”

  1. I need to do a better job with my printing and stop just winging it with each one. The Horsesthink article might jut get me to do that. Thanks.

  2. I’m sorry bu digital black and white is such an unfortunate thing. I love working digitally but it seems that if you want that in your work then put some crisp silver in the camera. It’s the perfect medium. There is something about it that is so elemental, uh, being an element and all.

  3. They probably have been already being revisited. As usual, I guess it will be as good as the artist’s statement going with it. I mean, the pictures are always the same, so it’s the only bit left to creativity…

  4. Yeah Todd, Sternfeld is the model for this kind of thing, and I’m guilty of using that template, too.
    http://www.michaeldavidmurphy.com/scrollfreedomscause.shtml

    Thanks for the link, Aaron.

    mjulius, the thing I keep thinking about in regards to using film is that digital wasn’t an absolutely necessary advancement, and it didn’t come about to breathe life into a dying art. there’s still so much exploring left to be done with real emulsions.

  5. Absolutely. My notion of this whole thing is that the process is where the real work gets done. There is a certain way of working that is fundamental to film. It’s slow. Even when whipping rolls through a rangefinder it’s a calculated and (this is really the wrong word) deliberate process because it’s finite (36 already?) and you can actually feel the film, this actual material, in the camera (I do miss that tension in the crank, the smell and even the taste of the film). Digital is so fluid and feels like language. It sort of sings and that is where I get a certain rush. I like connecting the pictures as I work and this is easy to do digitally. So it seems a worthy aesthetic problem to explore.

    Making a digital file this arbitrary non-color (at least to me) is suspect. I see the results and wonder why they didn’t just use the right tool for the job. Maybe that is a belligerant opinion but it isn’t related to the dogma that film is any kind of “dying art”. However, the shrill “Film is Not Dead!” crowd isn’t helping. Quantifying any superiority of one way or another is just a waste of time. There is certainly much to do with emulsion. It’s all just light anyhow.

  6. Whoa. I just got overwhelmed by the banality of my opinion. It’s all just light? Sheesh. Sorry folks. Still, the tit for tat bugs me to no end. It’s a shame that it so often comes to this (despite the fact that I inadvertantly steered the conversation that way).

    I just can’t for the life of me see that any particular aspect of photography needs life breathed into it. There are so many opportunities within the entire realm of this craft that applying a photoshop filter or selectively desaturating a digital file to evoke the effect of another medium that is just as accessible makes me nautious and, well, a little agitated.

  7. Cheers on that second paragraph, MJ.

    Currently, I’m amazed by the 3d-ness of emulsions, and how something so small can contain so much wonder. How if you were to look at a piece of film sideways, and microscopically, it would have little hills and valleys on it that correspond to the edges of the image.

    I’ve fallen way over the line on the fetishing of film, lately.

    But yes, my opinion is what it is – a lot of hot air.

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