It’s hard to talk about modern film photography, and miss the case of photojournalist David Burnett. He recently popped up using his Speed Graphic press camera at the 2012 Olympics, and how the fiddly film mechanism of a Leica made him miss one of the famous shots of the Vietnam War. As one of the few professional photojournalists who still shoots large format — let alone film — Burnett recently gave a talk at the Photoshelter Luminance conference in NYC.
His talk covered the transition from film to digital in the professional medium, and his own bucking of that trend. From shooting elections with toy cameras, to lugging a 4×5 to professional events, but always with incredible results. While the work required to make sure everything functioned properly was immense, the photos speak for themselves. There’s a wonderful point about 13:30 where he compares two shots from the same location, one digital and one analog, and the difference is astonishing.
It’s a great 30 minute talk, if you don’t have anything more pressing to do on a Halloween afternoon.