Tag: film

Dumping the darkroom?

A friend wrote me recently with something of an existential question for a photographer. I knew that answering it was going to be tough, for her and for me. Whichever direction I suggested she go (and whichever direction she chose to proceed) was bound to impact the lives of many photographers for years to come. Like any good existential question, half the fun was simply working through the problem. Knowing that no certain answer was possible (or preferable,) made the process both interesting and frustrating. Read More

Motion pictures vs stills

Like most people, I enjoy motion pictures (or movies.) Although I took a few classes in college on film history and film theory, I do not really know much about the media, other than what I like. Having said that, I have long had one eye on the movie business for a few reasons. First, there is a lot more money and acclaim for filmmakers as compared to still photographers. Secondly, I knew the explosion in digital imaging was going to inevitably change the movie industry, just like it changed the still image business. Recent events set me to thinking about all of this change and prompted me to try to hammer out a blog entry about movies vs. stills, from my purely personal perspective. Read More

Remakes in film and photography

Having studied history of photography in college, I am perfectly comfortable with the idea that many (most) of my photographs, to this day, are shaped, consciously or unconsciously, by the work of photographers I have previously seen. On the other hand, photographers rarely, if ever, do conscious remakes of the work of the predecessors, unlike musicians who are known for “covering” or performing the work of their predecessors. Filmmakers are perfectly comfortable doing remakes. The new movie, True Grit, is just the latest example of artists revisiting a story and reinterpreting that in their own way. I recently encountered a couple prize-winning photo projects that were remakes of sorts, which resonated very strongly with a project I did twenty-eight years ago. Read More

Pictures, purges and process (part one)

I recently wound up a series of blog entries exploring my experiences with and thoughts about technology. The non-technological process of spring-cleaning prompted all of these posts. In the process of that cleaning (or more accurately my massive archival purge,) I looked at thousands and thousands of my old images. Some scared me, some impressed me and some surprised me. Though it was not my intention, it turned out to be a great way to consider the arc of my evolution, as a photographer and as a professional. Read More

Technologies, necessary and otherwise (part three)

This is the last of three blog entries, for the moment, exploring my thoughts on technology. The entire set came from things swirling through my head lately. Events, especially e-mails, prompted me to organize those thoughts into the first two e-mails. This entry explores the starting point for all three posts, which was the fairly non-technical process of spring-cleaning. Read More

Out of the eyes of babes

About a month ago, my teenage daughter saw the new, sleek Olympus camera (the E-P1) that I have been using lately. She said she wanted to try it out. I was not sure if she was motivated by purely adolescent curiosity or her generation’s obsession with the newest, latest thing. I do know that although she spent her childhood in front of my camera being photographed for fun and work, she never has shown much interest in being behind the camera. Watching her use the new camera and then looking at the work she made set me to thinking (and blogging.) Read More

Everything you should know about buying a serious camera

I am working with an intern who is looking to move from film to digital photography. A family friend is moving up from a point-and-shoot to a serious Digital SLR. After giving both of them the same basic answers, I realized that their question is one I have answered dozens of times over the years. I also I realized that their question (and especially my answers) are a blog entry in the making. Read More

One small history of Indian photography – Part two

(In the first chapter of this blog entry, I introduced Prabhu Photo, a state-of-the-art photo lab in Bangalore, India where I had my E-6 slide film processed for merely a decade. The changing business climate for Prabhu photo is a bellwether for the changing imaging landscape in India.) I was such a regular at Prabhu that I kept my own loupe (magnifier) at the lab and I also had my own set of cotton gloves for handling the film without fingerprints. The young men who worked for Prabhu ended up knowing the drill as well, including knowing not to cut my film and what kind of coffee to bring me half ay through my edits to keep me awake. Those sessions at the light box alternated between exciting and heart-breaking, depending on how well or badly I had done in capturing on film what had been in front of my camera. Read More

One small history of Indian photography – Part one

I have been spending a lot of time at Prabhu Photo, a state-of-the-art photo lab in Bangalore, India. Back in the day, in the last century, (hah,) when I was shooting color slides, I used to have them processed at that same lab. Now that I have gone digital, I am going there to have color prints made from digital files. These prints are mostly for the various Indians I, or my wife, have been photographing. In the time I have known and worked with the proprietor, Allama Prabhu, I have seen his business grow and grow and more recently contract and contract. The change in the business of Prabhu Photo is something of a microcosm for the history of photographic processes in India. The amazing thing is that I am only talking about a short, thirteen year “history.” Read More

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What exactly is The Wells Point? It is podcasts and free information for aspiring and accomplished photographers. These materials have been designed to stimulate your creativity and improve your craftsmanship.

The phrase the Wells Point also refers to an important tool to better appreciate how light, time of day and the resulting light's direction can be utilized to immediately improve your photography.

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