Twentieth Century Craftsmanship + State of the Art Twenty-First Century Technology
Back in the good “ole days” of shooting with 4x5 film it would take an hour + to create a photograph because of the size of the camera, its myriad of setting, the demands of working with large format film and balancing complicated lighting conditions. The cost was prohibitive and it would take days to see if the processor handled the film correctly. Because of all of those demands, there wasn’t any margin for error. The work had to be creative / engaging, true to the client’s vision and of the highest quality which meant that the craft skills had to be finely applied at all times. My skills were fine tuned during that time. I have been told by prospective clients that they were having problems getting quality photos and that “I guess you just take a hundred pictures and hope one comes out”. I have seen the images to prove how that shotgun approach does not work. When I work on any photograph: I have studied my subject throughly, I know where I am supposed to be, I am sure that all of the lighting is correct and/or adjusted for, and, for those dusk shots, I know when and where the sun is going to set and exactly when I am supposed take the photograph. For any subject or type of image : Experience plus Preparation equals Craftsmanship which results in High Quality images.
Recently Nikon has begun working with the 36 MP CMOS Sony sensor. The Nikon/Sony hybrid is now being used in their line of professional cameras. Historically, one of the many short comings of digital cameras has been the lack of dynamic range which has been a chronic problem until this sensor was developed. Film has a dynamic range of 11 stops, digital cameras “pre-Sony” had 8-9 stops on a good day but the new Nikon/Sony now has a dynamic capture range of 15+ shops. The new Nikons also have the ability to shoot in 16 bit color, which when used with the new generation of Nikon lenses, including the 14mm-40mm 2.8 wide angle makes it possible to create 300 meg wide angle images that are free of distortion, sharp, rich and truly stunning.
Ansel Adams, the patron saint of all photographers, used an approach called Visualization to create his images. He could see the image in his imagination, had the craft skills to create the negative and then knew how to produce the final print in the darkroom so it would match what he had originally imagined.
Now it is possible that, with the Experience, the Craft Skills, the Technology and advanced Post Production Skills, a large number of high quality “Visualized” images can be created much more quickly which saves the client money and an offers a real opportunity to cost share where everyone gets what they want.