Collaboration of opposites
If you asked me to choose my medium of choice - digital or analogue - my initial gut reaction would be to choose analogue. For many reasons: I love the aesthetic designs, weight and manual functions of old cameras. Equipment that forces me to consider many calculations before I even press the shutter release. I'm afraid that I throw myself wholly at velocity into all that I do so tasks that make me slow down are good for me. In the darkroom I am intoxicated by the chemical cocktail of fumes and seduced by the seedy subdued red lighting. I am in love with the difficult processes that often produce imperfect perfect alternative outcomes because I haven't mastered the techniques.
On closer analysis of the choice though I recognise many aspects of digital photography that I am excited by too. The portability, cheapness and parameters that digital cameras provide. Being able to take hundreds of images on a shoot. The ability to edit images with ease in Photoshop.
The wise decision therefore would be not to make a choice but to form an alliance.....a collaboration of opposites. Which is what I have been doing this week having taken digital photographs of my found objects, editing them in Photoshop to create well contrasted digital negatives then processing them in the darkroom making cyanotypes.
It is through the success of my digital and analogue collaboration I have come to understand that faced with other extremes and opposites in my life that benefits are often found through partnership: old versus new, analytical versus emotional, shy versus outgoing. That choosing one extreme favourably over another is not necessarily the most rewarding course of action as collaborations of opposites often lead to outcomes that could not be achieved singularly.
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