Just some questions and answers…

by Adam Rowney

I was recently asked some questions regarding photography, so I thought I would post them on here, just in case anyone might be interested. If anyone is interested in asking me anything else, they can ask via this website: http://www.formspring.me/adamrowney

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1. Do you prefer to shoot Film or Digital? And Why?

I shoot digital. The simple reason is that the industry I am interested in (the fashion industry) as a whole has shifted towards using digital media over film. It is quicker and easier to work with, and currently, the technology has caught up allowing greater quality to be achieved. Film is still used, but it seems naive to learn to use one medium, when in reality, as a professional tool it is dieing out.

To add to that, the industry as a whole is evolving quickly, with camera systems often offering video as well as the ability to take images. Systems like Red and the Canon 5D II are becoming more and more common, giving new abilities to photographers.

2. How did you get into Photography?

I began more as a hobbyist. I got into taking photographs while I was traveling across Australia. Instead of taking images of the scenery, I was more interested in taking pictures of my friends around me. Thus the interest in photographing people.

3. Do you feel the development of Digital Photography has improved the

Photography Industry as a whole?

Yes and no. It is very hard to really see how the industry would have evolved had digital not come about. Personally, I feel as a whole, the industry has grown a lot due to digital imaging. It has allowed more people to get into photography, which has improved the overall populations ability to use a camera.

This has had some negative impacts though. More and more photographers are trying to make it as a professional, so they have been forced to charge less so as to have a competitive price structure. Added to this, many people now take away work from aspiring professionals by offering to do imagery for free or for next to nothing. This has made the entire industry have to fight to offer something better, a unique selling point.

So I feel, that although the market has been saturated with semi-professional photographers who destroy the worth of photography, it has pushed the serious photographers to work harder in an effort to stand out from the average joe. Overall, this has meant that the standard has had to rise, which I see as a good thing.

4. Would you say film photography could die out in the coming years?

No, I don’t see film dieing out any time soon. In fact, I question whether film will ever die out. People have a strong affinity with film. It has a strong sense of history which people feel attracted to. This is why Polaroid has seen such a strong surge in popularity in recent years. When someone see’s an old film image, they often relate to it, and expect images to be like that. With digital, people often criticize it for being too perfect, (and in fact retouchers will often add grain back to an image, just to give it that more “realistic look’). In that sense, people will always look back at history’s photography, and fall in love with the romance of the older era. Of the grain, the off colouring, and of the vignetting. Also the excitement of not knowing whether what you took will come out right, and of the joy of using a beautifully made old metal camera. All you have to look towards to show this is the massive increase in sales for vintage cameras, as well as cheap plastic “toy” cameras like Holgas and Dianas, which create images which are technically awful, yet are extremely popular, and can often be quite beautiful.

5. Do you use the internet to upload and share your work? E.g. flickr, facebook, personal website.

Yes, I use the internet a great deal with my photography. I upload my work to multiple sites in a bid to drive people back to my main site. As well as my main site, I use Facebook, a Facebook Page, Flickr, a Blog, Twitter, Model Mayhem and a few other minor sites to advertise my work. If someone on one of these networks likes my work, they can find my main site easily, and also find my contact details. It has allowed me to network efficiently, and to gain contacts in so many different sectors of the industry. I think any photographer in this day and age should use the internet to his or her advantage, or be left in the dust. I wrote a bit about this on my blog, http://www.adamrowney.com/blog/2010/10/networking/

6. Do you feel that the internet has helped photography as an industry? And How?

The internet has allowed for peoples work to be readily available quickly and easily. Before the internet, portfolios had to be delivered, at great cost and time. Or photographers would go as far as going from company to company in person. Now, an entire portfolio is just an email away. That is not to say that actual physical portfolios don’t have their place, but having your work online is a much more important tool in this day and age.