Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2005/02/19

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Subject: [Leica] The right equipment was: FLUGing reason to hate Canon.
From: henningw at (Henning Wulff)
Date: Sat Feb 19 19:59:48 2005
References: <> <> <> <>

>Hey, you're not alone! Some people are still shooting film and will 
>continue doing so. Some pro's are even coming back to film (at least 
>for 60% of their work, for the 2 PJs I talked to and who went the 
>100% digital route in the beginning). Others don't feel like going 
>digital at all (4 people I know of, but they do have a digital P&S). 
>And those are Canon or Nikon shooters NOT Leica users.
>As to the "clients asking for digital, or else..." thing, in another 
>thread: Now guys, I don't know of any serious client who will hire a 
>photographer, because he/she has gone the digital route. It's a 
>matter of talent, portfolio, and price (or budget). I have never 
>been asked, by any of my clients over the last 25 years, HOW I did 
>my work or with WHAT kind of gear. It's the result that counts. I 
>went the digital route for part of my work (catalogues in 
>particular), but the clients never noticed a difference, not even in 
>the price! (Actually, I charge a bit more for digital, because of 
>the extra work involved after the shoot)
>Magazines? I asked two photoeditors about how they felt about the 
>digital vs. film thing in their work. The answer was: we prefer film 
>over digital because the photographers aren't there yet. (!!!) They 
>had the feeling that the quality of work presented was, except for a 
>few cases, inferior to what they where used to. They also said that 
>the differences in picture quality (colour, grain, contrast) had 
>vanished between photographers, as if everyone was using the same 
>PJs? Hmmm. There is an interesting trend here. I had the chance of 
>being interviewed a couple of times last year, by local newspapers, 
>and only once (!) the interviewer was accompanied by a photographer 
>(with a Canon DS1). The other times it was the interviewer who 
>pulled out his digital P&S and made the pictures. A friend of mine, 
>ex-AP war photographer who teaches PJ at the CFPJ (the school for 
>journalists) in Paris, confirmed this trend. He says that most of 
>his "students" are actually journalists sent by their employer, to 
>learn the basics of PJ work. Meaning that a few PJs will be out of 
>work in the next couple of years, made redundant. And it's not 
>because they didn't go the digital route.
>All the best!

Well, Tarek, I've been relieved of jobs half a dozen times or so for 
using the 'wrong' equipment. Usually by patently idiotic art 
directors, but still.... I haven't been asked to shoot digital as 
such, but after a shoot I've been asked to provide a CD with the 
images within 2 hours. I couldn't have done it with film, and digital 
was certainly implied. The timeframe was not a whim, either.

I have always tried to suit the technical solution to the client's 
eventual usage, but sometimes the client has asked for things that 
were not really the most appropriate for the task. I was asked to 
shoot 8x10 colour in sawmills around 1980 here in British Columbia, 
and shooting 100ISO film on 8x10 in a giant building that has no 
useful reflective surfaces but has walls of dark aged unpainted wood, 
is lit by a couple of flourescent tubes, vibrates like crazy and has 
giant machinery moving at 60kph is really not possible unless you can 
tap directly into a nearby hydro-electric dam. I managed to talk them 
down to 4x5 but it was still a monumental task to do the shoot and 
required a large truck to carry the lighting equipment.

Another time someone asked me to shoot something in 8x10, and I said 
no. A year later they came back to me and said that they wanted me to 
shoot it however I wanted to, as the guy they got to do the 8x10 
'couldn't produce the quality they were after'.

A couple of times I got kicked off a job because the art director got 
upset that I didn't shoot Polaroids. The timeframes on those jobs 
didn't allow it, as far as I was concerned so I left. Once I got 
called back when the art director got fired for letting me go.

I still shoot film in my Leicas, for my own use. I shoot film on 
larger or stranger formats, but I'm shooting more digital. It all 
works, and I don't agonize over it.

    *            Henning J. Wulff
   /|\      Wulff Photography & Design
  |[ ]|

Replies: Reply from phong at (Phong) ([Leica] The right equipment was: FLUGing reason to hate Canon.)
Reply from tarek.charara at (Tarek Charara) ([Leica] The right equipment was: FLUGing reason to hate Canon.)
In reply to: Message from telyt at (Doug Herr) ([Leica] Another FLUGing reason to hate Canon.)
Message from firkin at (Alastair Firkin) ([Leica] Another FLUGing reason to hate Canon.)
Message from kididdoc at (Steve Barbour) ([Leica] Another FLUGing reason to hate Canon.)
Message from tarek.charara at (Tarek Charara) ([Leica] Another FLUGing reason to hate Canon.)