Generalization usually leads to mistakes, I know; but I can’t help asking myself why most photographers and photography store clerks appear to be so openly against analogue photography, films, and the rest about traditional photography.
I had no intention of writing about this, but something similar happened to me again…I think it’s worth reflecting over. Or, even reopen a debate that will never be trite. Analogue or digital photography? Do we have to drop one to take the other up?
When I began the search for my first analogue camera thousands of doubts took me over: what is better, 120mm film or 35mm film? Which one has a better quality/price relationship? Which one will I take the most advantage of? Susielomovitz can vouch for it (I think I drove her a bit crazy with all my doubts).
Despite everything I had read in Lomography, I decided to go to my usual photo store to see what their opinion was, and I was surprised when the guy told me not to even think about buying a film camera (of any kind); that playing retro was “very cool,” but its unavoidable trend towards extinction made buying a film camera a stupid thing to do, because soon, I wouldn’t find any place to buy film or have them developed. If these are not exact words, it’s very close; so imagine my face and how disheartened I was when I walked out of the store.
Even then, I asked for a second opinion at a photo studio where I was given all the explanations in the world. They gave me all types of advice; they told me there was no problem in buying film or having it developed, etc. So obviously, my “usual photo store” had changed.
I may be too harsh, but…it’s so easy to have a photo store where you have an automatic machine that spits photos out non-stop (where the user chooses the size and number of copies, etc. through a CD or USB), and call yourself a photographer.
Now that I have my camera, I decided to sort the negatives and CDs, so I went to a different store (the one I was closer to at that moment) and tried to buy a negative file folder. Second digitalized answer: “Ugh, totally discontinued everywhere.” This answer is an exact quote.
As soon as I had the chance I tried the studio where I now develop everything and…I got my album:
Wouldn’t it be easier and more honest if they just said they only deal with digital photography?
To sum up, in a way, if photographers themselves don’t promote, defend and protect photography… of course its essence will go extinct. I am not against digital at all (in fact I believe denying that it makes everything easier, faster and more comfortable is absurd) and I believe that if both complement each other you can achieve amazing results, but I believe people should have the option to choose, and, unfortunately, those of us that don’t have a Lomography store near by… have it harder every time.