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Pictures We Didn't Take Before Digital Cameras

We just found this interesting infographic by Twenty Pixels about the pervasive types of photos people take nowadays. They lament that, with film, one must consider if any or every shot is worth being developed, as opposed to the infinite takes possible with digital cameras. A penny for your thoughts on analogue photography?

Photo by natalieerachel

Twenty Pixels wrote:

I recently picked up a Polaroid camera “as is” at an estate sale. Curious to see if it actually worked, I spent $24 on a pack of instant film with 8 exposures. I had a hard time deciding what was worthy of being the subject of these $3 photographs. I turned to my camera roll on my phone for some inspiration only to realize that it was best if my digital photos stayed digital. So what kind of pictures did I take in the past that were worthy of making being developed? I can’t remember… but I’m sure it’s not these. I’m ashamed to say that these are the kind of photos I take now.

Photo via 20px

What do you think, Lomographers: agree or disagree?

While it’s true that you can’t go through a day online without seeing at least a dozen “selfies,” “what-I-had-for-lunch” or—god forbid—“just-got-my-nails-did” shots on your newsfeed, this practice of documenting random life details and moments is definitely not new. It’s essentially the premise of snapshot photography (and maybe even a bit of street photography) when you’re always armed and ready to shoot. Whether it’s mundane pet photos or purposeful artsy shots, these types of photos have always been taken by both professionals and amateurs, in film and in pixels.

Perhaps it’s the reasons behind photo-taking that differentiates analogue and digital. For digital photography, it’s mostly about timeliness and convenience. People want to share these images with their clients or peers right away. Motivation also plays a role in that, judging from the insane ubiquity of Instagram, a lot of people these days are taking photos merely for the “likes.” And don’t even get started on how many hundreds of people are taking the same thousand photos of the same million things. Certainly, the democratization of photography via mobile and digital cameras has been a mighty tool in empowering the masses. But we want to know, Lomographers: why do you take the photos you take and why do you shoot them in analogue?

Join Lomography’s Analogue Day Campaign!

written by denisesanjose


  1. denisesanjose


    Accompanying photos by @natalieerachel @whynotwinnipeg @marcus_loves_film and @yokekei. Thank you!

    over 1 year ago · report as spam
  2. mafiosa


    haha - so true.

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  3. segata


    Most of its true for me except in the case of pets, even before digital I used to do it alot as the little guys wont be around forever so I like to remember as much of the times spent with them as I can, If I can ever find it I have a photo somewhere of my dwarf hamster appearing to reverse park a model BMW Z8, taken I think on a cheap 35mm Camera that came in an underwater kit from a charity shop.

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  4. petesmith


    digital=documentary analog=artistic TECHNOLOGY KILLS CREATIVITY!
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  5. stratski


    @petersmith: no. Incredibly artistic stuff has been done with digital photography, and insanely boring things have been done in analog. You won't get magically creative by just picking up an analog camera, or lose all creativity when you use a digital camera. Digital or analog, they are just tools you can use to express yourself one way or another. Different tools, sure, for different things. And yes, here on lomography.com, chances are that we all prefer the analog tools. But that whole digital = evil thing? Pfff....

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  6. guanatos


    lol #guilty

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  7. denisesanjose


    @segata A hamster driving a BMW? That photo needs to resurface! Haha

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  8. pam-stach


    for me the analogue photos represent something I don't want to forget - often it's a certain moment, a special person, a favorite thing that a smart phone, digital camera, whatever digital can never replace. I love the fact that I always have to remember the roll of film I have in the camera in order to take the moment to remember - and not just put it on "auto", or delete to take a thousand of "perfect moment". you gotta love Kodak's good old slogan "share the moment, share life" :D

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  9. holgardo


    @petersmith come on... that opposition between digital and analogue photography it's too easy, I think @stratski have strong arguments on that issue. What really bothers me a little is that opposition between documentary and artistic photography. Some ideas on that topic:
    1. Any artistic object (no matter how good, or bad, intelligent or silly, original or not) is a form of documentary object.
    2. Lots for artistic movements (specially in photography) have grown over the idea of documentary. Robert Frank, Walker Evans, Bernd & Hilla Becher (just to quote a few) are amazing documentary and artistic photographers at the same time.

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  10. watchandlearn

    I take the photos I do when I'm using analogue because no matter what, even if it's the same subject in the picture, no one can duplicate. That picture will always be individual depending on the time, film, exposure, and camera. Only I own it.
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  11. whynotwinnipeg


    Thank you for mentioning my photo credit:)

    Very good article to make me think.
    Analog style is good. From what I think about photography through listening to many people, I think it is "ok" to shoot digital and even doing Instagram. In fact, I am on Instagram, and even shooting digital and shooting some stuff you mention, like pet, food, sky, etc... For me, just for fun, and stay connected with some friends I know.. Digital photos, I shoot to fill the photography life between analog photography times, at least for now. I think both analog and digital are good. I guess you are right, digital comes convenience, easy to share, but analog photography will do fill my feeling and emotion through the photography. Again, thank you so much for inspiring article:)

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