Thoughts on Analog Film Photography


I still love analog photography.  Like the next guy, I appreciate the speed and flexibility of digital photography and the invaluable ability of programs like Photoshop to cover a multitude of sins.  I use digital photography every day in my work and personal life, contributing to the visual consumerism that is the lifeblood of our social media age; I see traditional film photography like wood carving, furniture building or the kneading of home made pasta, it is fast becoming a lost art.  A kind of craftsmanship that requires time and planning, analog photography results in a tangible, touchable, timeless photo treasure.

No matter what size of film, from 35mm to 11″x14″ single sheet film, I find the analog process forces me to slow down, to meticulously plan the process and outcome, to carefully set up each shot, and then to wait with bated breath to see if the end result reflects my vision.  While this kind of investment is no longer practical in the workplace where productivity is the name of the game, I still find pleasure in laboring over that one, beautiful, black and white print on photo paper.  And while I am obliged to take those hundreds of photos that are discarded after a long digital day of shooting, I am still giddy over that one single piece of gelatin film – the one that took precious time to set up, shoot, and develop.