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12-23-2011, 06:00 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by cscurrier Quote
Film's an entire different beast, which generally requires a little planning ahead from when you load your film all the way to development. If you plan on pushing/pulling, working with the zone system to make sure you get all the detail you want, you have to keep all that in mind when you meter and shoot so you can adjust development times effectively. Where in digital, you can just do it easily in post.

In my film classes, I learned alot more about digital photography by doing it the old fashioned way. Granted I wasn't super rehearsed in Photoshop, but after spending time in the darkroom, I learned what half the tools in Photoshop were actually for. Burning, dodging, smudging, were pretty much lost on me until I learned the techniques in the darkroom and figured how to apply them in the digital world.

That's just a little bit of how shooting film taught me a few small lessons that diving into digital did not. I'm sure everyone else has had a different experience learning all this in various orders and mediums, though.
Perhaps if you had approached digital/PP the way you might have been forced to with your film classes, you might have learned the same things. Dodging/burning, etc. are exactly the same in printing and digital. So maybe it was more the approach you were taking than whether it was digital or film that helped you learn.

I'm guessing that most of us didn't employ the development aspect of the zone system with roll film. Of course you could still use the zone system to figure out where values would fall with roll film / color film, but unless you were shooting a lot of the same subject (or carried multiple bodies, or carefully swapped film mid-roll), you were limited with what you could do about adjusting contrast ranges before you got to printing. With roll film, I mostly used the zone system to make sure I didn't lose detail: if you captured detail in a negative, you could generally adjust the image somewhat in printing. With digital, you can do the same thing with a histogram, you're just limited by the range your sensor can capture vs. what various film/chemical/time developing combinations can capture.

Paul

12-23-2011, 06:02 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by SpecialK Quote
The convenience of digital :-)
That's probably one answer we can all agree on!

Paul
12-23-2011, 09:59 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by tibbitts Quote
Perhaps if you had approached digital/PP the way you might have been forced to with your film classes, you might have learned the same things. Dodging/burning, etc. are exactly the same in printing and digital. So maybe it was more the approach you were taking than whether it was digital or film that helped you learn.

I'm guessing that most of us didn't employ the development aspect of the zone system with roll film. Of course you could still use the zone system to figure out where values would fall with roll film / color film, but unless you were shooting a lot of the same subject (or carried multiple bodies, or carefully swapped film mid-roll), you were limited with what you could do about adjusting contrast ranges before you got to printing. With roll film, I mostly used the zone system to make sure I didn't lose detail: if you captured detail in a negative, you could generally adjust the image somewhat in printing. With digital, you can do the same thing with a histogram, you're just limited by the range your sensor can capture vs. what various film/chemical/time developing combinations can capture.
Totally! My film classes never really dove into the digital darkroom, so when I was at home playing my scans, I was clueless. It wasn't until my instructor demonstrated the effects of certain basic techniques in the darkroom that I realized how to apply it in the digital spectrum. That's when I only knew how to manipulate the histogram and slap on various filters easily. And you're right, with digital you can do all the same with a histogram, but I've worked with a few different photographers and even more cinematographers who don't know how to read a histogram... and trying to explain to a couple of those out in the field was a bit of a chore... And since all DSLRs or other professional digital motion camera systems include histograms in their displays, I tried to make sure they took advantage of the information presented to them. But for most, I've been able to compare it to the latitude of stops for certain film stocks and suddenly they get it!
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