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abjurina

Film, Fuji X, and why I don't care.

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Okay, this isn't really a rant, but I think that there have to be SOME photographers out there who will agree with me. First, a little history:

 

I've never shot film. Never. Now, that doesn't count point-and-shoot stuff, but I've never developed film, or ever taken a fancy at SLR film cameras or have any history with film. Here is why I say this:

 

I don't have any nostalgia or affinity to whether or not fuji cameras seem like film cameras. I don't care. All I know is that I like the cameras. I don't have a long, drawn-out story about how I used to shoot old Hasselblads or Leica's back in the day, and how the look and feel of the fuji quality reminds me of film because, well, it doesn't. I don't have any good memories of film. I was never given a film camera by my dad when I was 5, and I don't have great memories of smelling developer or whatever those chemicals are. I personally can't even tell the difference (on a computer screen, at least) between images shot with film and images shot with digital. 

 

Call me crazy, but I just like Fuji cameras. I just like the dials and controls better than nikon or canon DSLR's and I just like the quality of color and how well the files hold detail in the highlights and shadows. I just feel like every great photographer who is shooting Fuji these days has this really romantic story about how they used to shoot film and how it led them to Fuji cameras. You know what led me to Fuji X cameras? Nothing. I just like them. Sadly, not an amazing story, but hey, it's true. 

 

 

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Then I highly recommend you get on eBay and get yourself a vintage 35mm camera or even better yet, get a medium format film camera and give it a go. You only live once.

 

We could go on and on and on about analog anything vs digital anything. To each his own. Here is why I suggest to everyone I meet or talk to to try film at least once in their lifetime. A roll of film is finite. It forces you to slow down and focus on getting it all right the first time. From your exposure to your composition, you get one chance. The main thing that it does for me since I have to slow down is actually become part of the scene and enjoy it. And there is something about holding a negative and a print in your hand. It's very organic or orgasmic depending upon your persuasion lol. So yeah, try it!

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I would recommend a film camera too.  I've shot film and worked in darkrooms large and small and there truly is something about developing your own images from concept, to shooting and getting right in camera, to developing your film and processing your photos.  Then again you do all that in your digital darkroom already, but film is awesome.  You definitely should try it.  You can grab a good film camera with a lens for less than 150 bucks usually.

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Meh. As much as I appreciate the advice, I'm not in love with the idea of spending money to go back in time with technology just to "experience the feeling" of film. I liken that kind of thing to telling people that they need to go try aol dial-up internet so that they can experience the sound of a modem connecting and slow down their internet experience so that their clicks will be more thought out.

 

I get plenty of satisfaction with planning and carefully shooting with digital. My point in all of this is that I am wondering if any other photographers out there love Fuji and have no affinity to film.

 

 

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If they want to hear what a modem used to sound like, we can get them a ring tone for that.  I certainly wouldn't liken shooting film to experiencing dial up internet service, but to each his own.

 

If you ever get a chance, maybe a friend or family member has an old camera they don't know what to do with, take it, try it; if you love taking pictures, you'll love film just as much as digital.  I even use analog from time to time.  Dug out my old polaroid one step just the other day...

 

Photography is photography and can be enjoyed in every aspect of it...

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From the sound of it, Fujifilm lovers probably love the 35mm slr form factor........compact, light, quick and handsome looking. I know I do.   

 

Better yet, Fujifilm also caters for people who love the rangefinder style form factor. I'm guilty as charged.

 

And I heard that Fujifilm is also looking at a 6 x 7 medium format style camera. I'm in trouble..... :D

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The good thing about forum is it brings people with very diverse experiance and opinions.  I am the complete oposit to the original poster. Russion SLR Zenit, Canon QL, Olympus OM1 and OM2, Nikormar, Minolta Autocord first of the 120 cameras, Mamiya C330 Press Super 23 and Hassleblad C500. Then came a gap until the first digital Olympus 8080 was a complete failure the auto focus was ug.  Then came the Nikon 7S it was a good camera  but then upgraded to a 200 - very poor camera but then came the D3 great.

 

But now I have Fujifilm X-Pro1 and XT1 wow I do not miss any of the previously hardware. Digital has come so far with some way to go.  Has Sony just  set the bar even higher? Future? I think I will see what the XT2 will offer XT10 not for me too slow when shooting RAW.  Sell the X-Pro1 cos anything over 60mm lens is a compramise.

 

A fav bit of kit I have is very inexpensive LED ring light(not flash), great for portrates, my cats and more. couple it with my 60mm lens I enjoy.

 

Now its so nice to be able to carry a range of lenses plus bodies all in one bag, before with the Nikon D3 plus lenses I needed to go out in my 1 Ton truck and for what? smoother images greater range of tones but now the difference is being eroded. With the advantage of greater portability.

 

My other great interest is editing my images it started in the dark room using a stopwatch hands and bits of card, the smell of fixer ugh but now its so civalised and so flexible.  Coral Paint Shop Pro, I hate Lightroom. Now we are spoilt for choice there is such a great range of editing software out there, RAW converters Optical correctors as well. It goes without saying there is no substitute for first class images out of the camera.

 

To refer back to the original post does my past experiance help to-day yes, but only as the ability to capture good images. Understand about depth of field and other tecchnical aspects. To-day we see more images caputred on mobile phones!!!!!!!

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I agree with the OP - I don't get the whole "you need to go shoot film" thing. If you fell in love with photography using film cameras then there is the nostalgia - if you fell in love with photography using digital cameras then shooting film is just stupid. There is nothing you can do with a film camera that you can't do with a digital camera. The only reason to recommend film is to feel superior - we're not superior - we're old. Film cameras required that you think about more technical things to get a decent image - digital cameras can do most of that technical thinking for you so all that is left is composition. Composition is the art - the rest is just the BS you had to do to get there. Modern cameras take away the BS and leave only the art. If slowing down is the point of going back to film then just go buy a really small memory card that will only fit a few dozen images. Same experience - virtually zero cost. Oh, and don't preview the images you took, send them to someone else and have them give you some prints in a week or two so you can see how you did. Ah yes, good times :)

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I shot film.  From 1973 through until I got my first digital camera in 2002.  I don't miss it.  Period.  In the 80's I shot medium format weddings.  I would rush home after the final moments of a reception, build my makeshift darkroom in my bathroom, ad process the wedding film -- all before daylight, or before one of my kids had to use the potty.

 

I do not miss it. I believe digital is so much better.  My last digital camera, a Mamiya 645AFD with a buch of film backs, and lenses, all in a huge metal Pelican case went on Fleabay a couple of years ago.  Done.

 

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I agree with the OP - blablabla

While I basically agree with you, it's still way too many words to describe an art that has nothing to do with words (it's visual). Only the end result counts, if film helps one to achieve his vision there is nothing to argue. Nothing.

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The goal of my post was to express my opinion and to see if there were anyone else out there who agree with it. I'm encouraged by those who also share my perspective. For those of you who don't. Go troll somebody else's post. Your opinion isn't the one I'm after.

 

 

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Don't think anyone is saying you have to shoot film.  But you should be able to.

 

To say that the only artistic aspect of photography is composition is false.  Sorry, but it just is.  Do digital cameras do the technical work for you? Yeah.  That's part of the problem.  You should understand the technical aspects that make a good photograph, not just turn some dials until you like what you see in the EVF.  A good photographer can pick up any camera and make images with it.  Film, digital, tiny sensor, full frame, 35mm, medium format, large format, it shouldn't matter.  If you don't want to know the technical aspects to making a photo fine, just stay in Program the whole time.  Never expand your knowledge of the art.  Never learn how an image is made and how understanding the exposure triangle and how using it to your advantage is just as much an art form as composition.  If you don't want to know these things, then why do you have an X-T1?  Why not just have an X20 or something?  I'm sorry, I'm just really having a lot of trouble with the whole "the technical stuff is just BS".  I can't believe I read that on a photography forum.

 

The reason you should use film is to learn all these things and get to know the technical aspects in and out.  Always letting the camera do your thinking is like taking a pill to look fit.  Why should you work out if you can just take a pill to look like you do?

 

And why post this opinion if you didn't want to hear opposing opinions?

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First off, I've been doing photography and using Canon and Nikon digital SLR cameras both for almost 10 years in manual mode. I teach classes in both general and advanced photography as a full-time teacher as well. I don't know where anyone got the idea that I don't like film because I don't want to bother to learn the technical aspects of photography. That's absurd. My point, as I seem to be repeating over and over again, and somehow it is getting lost, is that I am asking if there are other photographers out there who appreciate Fuji but have no history or affinity to film. Geez. No need to defend film or anything. I'm just seeing if there are more people who share my perspective. The other perspective (being drawn to Fuji because it reminds you of your old film days) doesn't matter to me, because I KNOW that you guys are out there. In fact most of the articles on any blog are written by former film users. Just go read my original post.

 

 

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I am one of those people who has never used a film camera before, at least not serious slr, only a point and shot. Maybe I am a bit too young, and having the possibility of choise, I choose digital and I don't feel the need to go back and try film photography: Till I am trying to grow and use my X-T1 at its best. But realy, I don't understand why if you never shot film you are a sort of B series photog.

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I don't understand why if you never shot film you are a sort of B series photog.

 

I shot film for 20+ years before digital and I don't get that either. The whole "I shot film so I know more and am better than you" attitude is ridiculous.

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Why does your perspective need to be confirmed or shared by others? It's YOUR ARTISTRY. Who cares if other people appreciate Fuji and have no affinity to film? As our resident self proclaimed psychoanalyst (Trenton Talbot) would say, you are displaying a cognitive bias. Film most definitely has its advantages over digital as do all analog over digital. The problem is that film's advantages are captured in the end result itself which matters most. Having knowledge of the facts allows us to appreciate what the company, Fujifilm, has been able to accomplish in their X-Trans digital sensor. Their array is more akin to film than a typical Bayer sensor array or at least the results are due to their unique array. Fujifilm has roots in film. They are specifically trying to emulate their own films in camera save for classic chrome as that is a print emulation and not a film one. So film is a huge part of our heritage and that is reflected in the Fujifilm X line.

 

I don't care why you appreciate Fujifilm cameras. It has zero effect on me. What I was hopeful for in my first reply to you was that at some point in your life, you give film a chance to at least say you tried it. Maybe it will lead you on a new artistic path. Maybe it will enlighten you as to the challenges that faced the great photographers of our history who only had film. Maybe this path will lead to other paths like wet plate. There are so many exciting photographic processes to explore and that is my only point to you. Explore!

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Don't think anyone is saying you have to shoot film.  But you should be able to.

 

To say that the only artistic aspect of photography is composition is false.  Sorry, but it just is.  Do digital cameras do the technical work for you? Yeah.  That's part of the problem.  You should understand the technical aspects that make a good photograph, not just turn some dials until you like what you see in the EVF.  A good photographer can pick up any camera and make images with it.  Film, digital, tiny sensor, full frame, 35mm, medium format, large format, it shouldn't matter.  If you don't want to know the technical aspects to making a photo fine, just stay in Program the whole time.  Never expand your knowledge of the art.  Never learn how an image is made and how understanding the exposure triangle and how using it to your advantage is just as much an art form as composition.  If you don't want to know these things, then why do you have an X-T1?  Why not just have an X20 or something?  I'm sorry, I'm just really having a lot of trouble with the whole "the technical stuff is just BS".  I can't believe I read that on a photography forum.

 

The reason you should use film is to learn all these things and get to know the technical aspects in and out.  Always letting the camera do your thinking is like taking a pill to look fit.  Why should you work out if you can just take a pill to look like you do?

 

Perhaps we don't have the same definitions for what is technical and what is not. IMO, there are only three technical bits everyone should know: ISO, Aperture, and Shutter Speed. You should know how they interact with each other and what the compositional value of changing each is. That takes like 10 minutes to figure out and you don't need a camera in front of you to get it. Once you know those things you can "pick up any camera and make images with it". Everything beyond that is composition - deciding what is in the image, what the focus point is, how much is in focus, etc - that is all composition - nothing technical about it.

 

As far as letting the camera decide what to do there are only two things it really decides: the focus point and exposure. You should never let the camera choose the focus point because it generally has no idea what the subject is. However, the majority (I might even say vast majority) of the time it can figure out the exposure. The metering systems of modern cameras are quite brilliant.

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It's ironic that you say that the end result is all that matters and then you champion the "process". If I make a print using film or digital, does it matter the road I took to get there? Yes, some enjoy all that comes with using film, but just because others are not interested doesn't mrs they are missing anything. That's just your opinion, which doesn't matter to me either.

 

Secondly, I joined this forum to chat with like-minded Fuji-X users who all share a passion for Fuji gear. I'm just trying to see if there are any specific voices (and there are) who share my sentiments. Isn't that why most of us are on here? It gives us a level of satisfaction to belong to this group.

 

I'm also not opposed to trying out film. I just don't think that it's necessary to be drawn to Fuji gear all because you used to use film.

 

 

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Show me where I said the end result is all that matters. I know EXACTLY what I said as it's written in plain English in my post.

 

Let's try it again as it seems you don't understand or are being purposefully obtuse.

 

 

"The problem is that film's advantages are captured in the end result itself which matters most. "

 

Because you haven't used film, you can't speak to these very specific advantages or even the disadvantages for that matter lol.

 

I find it a bit disingenuous to come on a DISCUSSION forum and make a post that is "not really a rant" but preloaded as such and not expect replies which don't align with your own expectations. If you don't want any differing opinions, either don't post or say it clearly in your opening post. And for the love of God, stop crying "troll" just because someone posts a RESPONSE that differs from your own opinion. Jesus, what are we in high school again?

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To your credit, you are correct. I did not put a great title at all on this post. It should have said this: "Anybody out there who loves Fuji but does not have a film background?" That's all I wanted to know.

 

 

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That would have helped but the content of your post may have been interesting enough or other members responses may have been interesting enough for me to jump in. I jumped in with only one hope...to encourage you to try something different.

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Thanks for the encouragement. I am interested in film, but only for the curiosity of what others have been saying about it. It's hard to justify paying for something I'm able to do for free right now (except for the printing, of course). Additionally, I understand that its becoming increasingly more difficult to develop your own film (due to finding the chemicals, etc) and sending it away just reminds me of old point and shoot days of film, which I DO remember.

 

I have always learned that a controversial hook is a great way to gather interest in your topic. Perhaps my "hook" was a little too controversial. I am not bashing film. I just can't relate to the other Fuji photographers who come from film. I just didn't know if there were others out there like me.

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This may be of no interest to you but I'm posting this as it might be of interest to others and it speaks to the advantages of film...specifically Fujifilm X-trans vs Fuji film. It also shows just how damn good the X-Trans sensor is.

 

http://www.rebeccalily.com/film-digital-fuji-xe1-400h/

 

Look at those pics. Basically, film gives you the advantage of better gradients and color blending. The transition from the darkest shadow to the highlights (which are hard to blow in film) if represented as a line will appear as a slope. In digital it would appear as steps. This is due to the linear nature of your standard bayer sensor. But that is the beauty of X-Trans! Fuji knows film and helped give its sensor this advantage as best as they could. It's still not perfect but it's damn close. All things analog can be pushed to the point of distortion while still being captured. In digital, where the language is 1's and 0's...on or off, when you push past the limit, you get clipping. A computer doesn't understand clipping. It only knows on or off. There is no in between.

 

Here is another bit about film vs digital.

 

http://www.slrlounge.com/film-still-better-digital/

 

 

I don't agree with everything that is in that article but it does a good job explaining things for the most part. It also implies in a very roundabout way of how good the X-Trans sensor is because it's made by people who know and love film. Not to mention that the X-Trans sensor isn't even full frame!!!! Like how awesome is Fuji?

 

Lastly, I'm glad you're here as an X shooter. To help grow the company and thus protect our investments, I only ask that as Fuji ambassadors, you are able to speak smartly about how we got here and how those film advantages are captured in the technology.

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