chance

There is a view that film photography after digitalisation provides a way to create poetry because the convenience of digitalization  also tidies things up, correcting mistakes and eliminating chance.  If this analogue media of contemporary art  involves a backward glance to what has been, as we become ever more immersed in digital media, it also keeps photography  open to chance.  

You don't know what you are going to get with film, even when the photo has been carefully scoped and theme of the shoot  carefully selected.  

seaweed still life

This snap of a found still life was made along the coast between Petrel Cove and Kings Beach in Waitpinga whilst I was on an early morning poodlewalk:

 I have been looking at an exhibition  of the early 35mm work  made by Joel Meyerowitz between 1963 and 1978. The exhibition is entitled "Joel Meyerowitz: Towards Colour 1962-1978",  and it is at   Beetles and Huxley, a photographic gallery  in London. These Leica snapshots  are   from Meyerowitz's very early days shooting in black and white on the streets of New York  to the year he published his first book, "Cape Light", the pictures of which were made with a large format camera. 

Meyerowitz worked in advertising for four months of the year to support his family and devoted the rest of his time to photography.  A number of the pictures in Mexico and Florida   were made with  a Guggenheim Scholarship to take pictures on the theme of 'leisure time'.

summer light

This picture of roadside vegetation  was made whilst  I was walking along  a back country road in Waitpinga, on the Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia. It was in the late  summer in 2016 and  I was on an early morning   poodlewalk  with the standard poodles. 

I was forcing myself to take photos of trees and the agricultural landscape around me so as  to keep my  photographic eye hand in. This was the area/locality  in which I now live,  so how can I photograph it? I recall that I didn't have the confidence to  set things up to  do tripod based photography. 

Though film has quickly gone  poof (poor Kodak) as the medium of choice   for photographers,  I am part of that 'bridge generation' between film and digital. Digital, including rangefinder digital,   is simply easier, faster and immediate since the camera  is really a portable computer (with a sets of options,) and a sensor and  lens.   My technique is far slower and more measured with film.  

My doubts  about 35mm film photography are beginning to ease.  I can see that there is still some life in 35mm film photography,  in that  it has a different quality to the digital version.  But it is only for some subject matter, as I'm beginning to discover.  Unfortunately, I cannot predict which one.  

That  filmic quality is hard to pinpoint,  but it  has something along the lines of  providing a more emotional response to what is photographed, as distinct from a technically perfect image that can be quite bland.   Digital images are  unfilm like and so perfect that camera software manufacturers are now adding  adding "grain" enhancement plugins.