From the Director of Photography
We have lots of tours at OPUBCO and one of the highlights used to be the photo department. I say used to be because in the age digital photography, our office looks pretty much like everyone else’s, a desk and a place for a computer. Gone are the cool things we used to show, the rotating doors to the darkroom, the darkroom illuminated by a dim safelight, the film processing rooms with reels and tanks and turbo dryers. Gone are the trays we used to watch our handiwork appear before our eyes. Watching the print develop was one of the things that turned me on to photography. It was a magical thing to see the photo slowly appear out of nowhere. But also a thing of the past is the repugnant odor of fixer, the dry rot on your fingers from having your hands in liquid all the time and the itchy feeling of being slightly allergic to the chemistry. Yes, we were supposed to use tongs to move the prints from tray to tray, but on deadline late at night it didn’t happen very often!
I resisted digital until the quality became comparable to film, but now I say “FILM IS DEAD!” Yes, the prints from real fiber-based silver prints are superior to anything digital, but they only belong in a gallery hanging on the wall. For most people, digital is an enormous jump in access, cost savings and ease to share. For most publishing, digital is the new king, for better and for worse. Better because we can do things much faster and cheaper and worse because we can do things faster and cheaper! Because of the low cost of technology, more people can afford better cameras and the software to deal with photos.
But a 10 megapixel camera, business card and photo manipulation software do not make a photographer. The art of photography is just that, art. It is created in the mind through a media that captures light and shadows and takes a lifetime to perfect. Yes, I will concede that anyone can get a good photograph occasionally (several Pulitzers have been won by amateurs who were in the right place at the right time), but it takes a professional to do it day in and day out. Which leads me back to the photo department at The Oklahoman.
Message Sent Successfully
Be Sure to Check Out Our Top Headlines
- 14605Oklahoma tornadoes: The 'Big Dog,' the little boy and the hug that triumphs over tragedy
- 9594Finding Addyson – One family's struggle in the Moore tornado
- 8537Oklahoma tornadoes: Cost, custom keep basements scarce
- 8009Oklahoma tornadoes: Plaza Towers Elementary School teacher shoved students into bathroom as wall collapsed
- 6980Oklahoma tornadoes: Woman meets the military officer who shared the clothes off his back
- 6486Miranda Lambert, Reba McEntire, Vince Gill to join Blake Shelton at "Healing in the Heartland" Oklahoma tornado benefit
- 6299Story behind the photo: Family members describe desperate search for one another after EF5 twister
- 5124Oklahoma tornadoes: Sooners bring back some smiles to Sydney Angle's teammates
- 5057Oklahoma tornadoes: Thunder reverses the role, takes a turn at cheering on the community
- 4620UPDATE: Search continues for boy, 17, missing in Uncle John Creek in Kingfisher
Back to share with a friend form.
Add More Recipients