15 mar 2020

Hey kiddo, I'm in the process of preparing to shoot in the desert and right now I am facing too many options of all the different ways I want to shoot and the things I am trying to learn technically. I think I have become a little too concerned about format over photograph and it is proving to be an inhibitor to thinking about what I want to shoot and how I want to shoot it, over what format I want to shoot with.

I'll open that up a little bit. Should I should digital or film or both? If I shoot with film, should that be 35mm, medium format or large format? Just one format or two? Which film to shoot? Too many combinations that lead to time wasted thinking about it.

When I take a step back, I can see that it is just another kind of folly, as if a particular format is going to make me take photographs that have more to say, or more importantly, more of me to say in them. Not likely. Certainly, some formats demand a slower and more precise process. If I can't make up my mind, then I should only allow myself to take a 35mm camera with a couple rolls of film and get on with it. It is the photographs that matter.

I'd like to take the 4x5 into the field, but since I have never shot a frame with it, I think it would be wiser to shoot some still life first, so that I can practice the process and make mistakes where there isn't a long daytrip at risk.

Medium format would be great as well, except that I still have to get my first round of transparency film back to see how I am reading exposure. It doesn't make sense to shoot more transparency without knowing if it is working for me. I do have some color negative, but I think most of it is better suited for portraiture and still life.

Now I'm at 35mm. I have had an idea of shooting long term landscape work with 35mm because it is the opposite of the cutting edge, medium format digital. I have some film that would take the edge off all the detail and saturation. This could be great. I'm very comfortable with 35mm, so I can concentrate on composition and exposure.

Digital. This is a pretty well known quantity for me. I think I have my kit nailed down, and am more interested in composition and exposure.

I think writing this out helped. I think I'll shoot 35mm film, and consider bringing my digital as well, but I am thinking I will leave it behind. That will be less distracting.