As I’ve previously written, I haven’t shot much since 2012. I wasn’t receiving the satisfaction from carrying around a camera and making exposures. The exposures I had made I wasn’t exactly thrilled with either. A lot had to do with processing technique; particularly scans. Unfortunately, I wasn’t in the position to afford drum scans or wet-mounting. The process wasn’t rewarding and the product wasn’t rewarding, so it just wasn’t happening.
Then I came across some articles which made convincing arguments for negative digitization through a digital SLR and macro lens: Yes, Your DSLR Really Is The Best Film Scanner and Scanning 35mm Black and White Negatives with the D800E. Convincing. Afterall, I have a DSLR and macro lens for my profession which is seeing little to no use. After much deliberation, Googling, and Youtubing, I’d ordered a lightpad and copy stand. Preliminary results (i.e. my first DSLR digitized frame), I’m very pleased.
I didn’t even bother to try to match the exposure, tone curves, anything. I just don’t care about the flatbed scan anymore. Forget about it.
I think these images speak for themselves. I don’t have a darkroom for printing available to me, and most of my images I view digitally. The quality and character afforded by the DSLR technique makes me feel like I’m using film again.
Is this the best investment I’ve made into photography in the past year or so? We shall see. I’m unlikely to go back to rescan all images, but am likely to digitize all future exposures with this technique. Many argue that this is faster; that remains to be seen. Definitely more post-processing involved with DSLR technique. Anyway; call this Renaissance #2. A renaissance two-fer. I’m motivated again.