Thursday, November 3, 2016

Man in the street

I picked up my first point and shoot digital camera in 2008.  It was a Canon G10.  I used it for street photography along with my more trusted film camera.  I was in San Miguel de Allende Mexico that year and found myself using the little digital camera to capture the fast moving street scenes of that colorful city.  Although I continued to use film as my primary platform for photography until 2011, I was slowing finding myself making the shift to total digital.  Now after nearly five years of working with digital I can respect the unique properties that each format brings to photography.  When I view my black and white prints made with large format film I have an appreciation for the fine detail and tonal separation that was capable with the darkroom process.  A gelatin silver print when made correctly has a unique quality that almost appears to emit light from the print surface.  The hardest obstacle for me to overcome when first starting my digital process, was not being able to touch the image as I was working on it.  The simple fact that my image was locked behind a piece of glass of the monitor was very disturbing to me.  The darkroom has a tactile aspect to it with the handling of the film and paper, and was a critical part of the emotional involvement throughout creative process of making the fine print.  The absences of this relationship to the image is something that I still struggle with at times when trying to determine my approach to how I feel about a subject, and working towards the finished print.  Digital imaging has allowed me to continue photographing as I get older with light weight camera gear and the computer replacing the strenuous work of my darkroom.

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