DPChallenge: A Digital Photography Contest You are not logged in. (log in or register
 

DPChallenge Forums >> Photography Discussion >> Would Ansel Adams Have Gone Digital?
Pages:  
Showing posts 1 - 23 of 23, (reverse)
AuthorThread
12/12/2003 08:16:54 PM · #1
//slashdot.org/articles/03/12/12/1651200.shtml?tid=126&tid=152&tid=185
12/12/2003 08:24:26 PM · #2
We had this conversation during a photography workshop I was at this summer. The consensus was yes.

The reason....Ansel was a great photographer, but he was a master enlarger! He would often enlarge a print, hang it on a wall for a week or more and continue to make notes on the print, where to burn and dodge...etc.

He would have loved the flexability a digital darkroom would provide!
12/12/2003 09:44:08 PM · #3
I had a chance to attend a reception at Adams' house/studio a few years ago, and one of his former assistants was asked this question. HE had no doubt that Adams would have had a gas with Photoshop ...
12/13/2003 03:36:03 AM · #4
There is no doubt in my mind that Ansel Adams would have loved the digital control to enhance his creativity. There is nothing like an original print of Ansel Adams work. His work is un-paralleled to this day. His fine-art prints were at the time, state of the industry and proprietary in that they used several blacks and several grays to try to replicate his originals. Even as good as they were, they didn't come close to the originals. In my opinion, mass producing his originals had a great deal to do with Ansel Adams becoming a household name.
12/13/2003 08:08:01 AM · #5
Not only was he a master photographer but wasn't he the best at darkroom techniques? This is what made him the legend he is today.
12/13/2003 09:25:57 AM · #6
Of course he would have "gone digital". He was a pioneer in photographic technology and would have tried everything available to the extent of learning it's capabilities. As for Photoshop, it would have gotten just a passing glance from Adams. Instead of stopping there, he more likely would have employed a team of software writers to develope truely leading edge programs.
12/13/2003 09:21:19 PM · #7
I don't think he would have. Gotcha is right though. There IS nothing like an original print of Ansel Adams work. Herein lies the reason he would not go digital. I doubt, very seriously, that Adams would be satisfied with a digital print.

There is an Adams quote somewhere that I have posted before. It says something like "The negative is the score, but the print is the finished symphony." I'm just not convinced that the digital printing technology that we have available today would satisfy him at all.

12/13/2003 09:29:10 PM · #8
Originally posted by jmsetzler:

I don't think he would have. Gotcha is right though. There IS nothing like an original print of Ansel Adams work. Herein lies the reason he would not go digital. I doubt, very seriously, that Adams would be satisfied with a digital print.

There is an Adams quote somewhere that I have posted before. It says something like "The negative is the score, but the print is the finished symphony." I'm just not convinced that the digital printing technology that we have available today would satisfy him at all.


I have to disagree, John. Adams certainly would have availed himself of every technique he could bring to bear to realize his vision. Either film or a digital file are capable of more dynamic range and gamut than either digital or analog printing techniques are capable of reproducing. A digital image can also be printed by anlaog means.
How the photo is printed, IMHO, is non sequitur.
12/13/2003 09:37:59 PM · #9
I just haven't personally seen any digital prints that would touch the quality of a good sepachrome print.
12/13/2003 09:58:03 PM · #10
Using Photoshop is not the same as shooting with a digital camera.

He could easily have gotten a drum scan at 4000 dpi from one of his large-format negatives. We know he authorized offset lithographic versions of his images. Even with his custom ink-set, those only "come close" to the quality of the photo prints, given that they are halftoned images generated from just such drum scans.

But a print made from a high-res scan should yield a quality about equal to one made from the negative. When I was imaging files to slides, the folks from AGFA assured me that the 100 speed film we were using had a grain somewhere between 4-8000 cpi*, and that trying to image more data than this was useless. The reverse is true of scanning; more than 8000 dpi and you'd get the detail of the actual grains.

He'd probably have experimented with one of the original large-format camera backs which were the earlier "digital camera." These typically fit in place of the film magazine on a 4x5 or 8x10 view camera, allowing full use of previous experience with the set-up, lenses, etc. These film backs usually capture files between 40-130mb.

I think the key is he would have had (been able to afford) enough data to print at his usual (large) sizes without interpolation.

*Chunks Per Inch

Message edited by author 2003-12-13 21:58:58.
12/13/2003 10:17:34 PM · #11
That's a good question. 5x7, 8x10, and 11x14 negatives contain quite a lot of data.
12/13/2003 10:28:28 PM · #12
In RGB, an 11x14 at 300ppi (like a print) is about 40mb.

A 4x5 at 4000ppi (like a drum-scanned negative) is about 920mb. Better add RAM and a couple more FireWire scratch disks if you want to do much editing with that.
12/14/2003 12:16:38 AM · #13
Any artist will use the tools at his or her disposal to accomplish a goal or objective. In December of 1903 Wilbur and Orville Wright flew the first airplane 120-feet for 12-seconds and transformed the human dream of flight into a modern commonplace.

Does anyone here think that if we asked Wilbur of Orville Wright, if they wanted to go to the moon, but they would have to use Computers, JetFuel, and Fiberglass, they would have said “NO”?
12/14/2003 12:41:41 AM · #14
I don't disagree that Adams would be intrigued with digital cameras. I'm just not convinced that he would replace his large format cameras wtih digital equipment. I know about all the different scanning techniques, but I would have to see it to believe it.
12/14/2003 02:41:15 AM · #15
Originally posted by Gotcha:

In my opinion, mass producing his originals had a great deal to do with Ansel Adams becoming a household name.


His fame is due greatly to the fact that he was one of, if not the first photographer to hire a publicist whos job it was to make Ansel Adams a household name.
12/19/2003 01:04:46 PM · #16
He might not have shot digitally, not just yet, but he would absolutely have used digi printing methods: I know a guy who printed for David Bailey who was using 1GB source files four years ago ... we are NOT talking about desktop PC's here :-)

ed
12/20/2003 04:14:39 PM · #17
Bullcrap. all he does in that article is mention the features on the D100. its for money!

well in this one
//www.fortune.com/fortune/ontech/0,15704,560361,00.html

Message edited by author 2003-12-20 16:15:17.
12/21/2003 02:11:05 AM · #18
I agree with Setz. Adams did like to fiddle with his images, but the detail from one of the larger format cameras that he used just cannot be duplicated with a digital camera. I recently went to David Muench's website, and he and his son discuss digital photography a little. They thought it was fun, but wouldn't for a second trade their larger format cameras for even a really good digital. For an excellent discussion on the equipment the Muench's use, click here.

They did mention that it was great that they could take a digital camera along with one of their other cameras and that they would use it to compose or try out different points of view.

Now that I've been doing digital photography for a while, I got my old Pentax ME Super out again and plan on shooting with some quality film again. I'm sure that both cameras are in my future.

Message edited by author 2003-12-21 02:20:14.
12/21/2003 02:13:38 AM · #19
Originally posted by GeneralE:

In RGB, an 11x14 at 300ppi (like a print) is about 40mb.

A 4x5 at 4000ppi (like a drum-scanned negative) is about 920mb. Better add RAM and a couple more FireWire scratch disks if you want to do much editing with that.



I've been scanning some of my slides at 4000 dpi, and I don't get a much larger print than my Sony gets. Does anyone scan at higher dpi?
12/21/2003 09:01:55 PM · #20
But would he enter DPC ... ?
12/30/2003 12:38:36 AM · #21
Originally posted by Gordon:

But would he enter DPC ... ?


Yup, and he'd get a boatload of 'it's a bit too dark' comments...;)
12/30/2003 01:59:40 AM · #22
Originally posted by dsidwell:

Originally posted by GeneralE:

In RGB, an 11x14 at 300ppi (like a print) is about 40mb.

A 4x5 at 4000ppi (like a drum-scanned negative) is about 920mb. Better add RAM and a couple more FireWire scratch disks if you want to do much editing with that.



I've been scanning some of my slides at 4000 dpi, and I don't get a much larger print than my Sony gets. Does anyone scan at higher dpi?

Problem is the slide is so small you still only get 4000x6000 pixels. I'm sure there are drum scanners which go to higher resolutions; I'd call a local printing pre-press house or service bureau.
12/30/2003 05:54:56 AM · #23
Originally posted by ronners:

Originally posted by Gordon:

But would he enter DPC ... ?


Yup, and he'd get a boatload of 'it's a bit too dark' comments...;)


Haha, yes he would get panned by the DPC allmighty.
Pages:  
Current Server Time: 06/01/2020 04:42:45 PM

Please log in or register to post to the forums.


Home - Challenges - Community - League - Photos - Cameras - Lenses - Learn - Prints! - Help - Terms of Use - Privacy - Top ^
DPChallenge, and website content and design, Copyright © 2001-2020 Challenging Technologies, LLC.
All digital photo copyrights belong to the photographers and may not be used without permission.
Proudly hosted by Sargasso Networks. Current Server Time: 06/01/2020 04:42:45 PM EDT.