Yes, the title is meant to be provocative. This is a personal blog after all, which means it's inherently biased. It's also the first post on the blog so why not really go for it and let it be shown that I'll share some opinions that a lot of people might not agree with. That's okay. There will be plenty of other places those people can go if they are looking for someone to agree with their opinion and don't like to be challenged. This first post is going to come out split into a few parts.
So, why do I make the title claim? It partially comes from my interest in photographic history and its use as an art form and a bit more from having a lengthy history working in digital imaging. A little background, I'm old enough (forty-three at the time of this writing) to have begun my photographic journeys when film was still king.
My first camera was a simple pocket camera using 110 film. Prints from this camera were grainy, soft, and hazy. I loved them. Immediately hooked on photography I eventually moved up to a simple 35mm camera and dreamed of getting my hands on a 35mm slr. At this point I had my film developed and printed by someone else as I could barely afford to get my pictures printed; the cost of creating a darkroom for a very poor ten-year-old kid was beyond imagining. I would read books on photography at the library and look at photographs anywhere I could find them. Old photographs my family had put into a photo album, photos on the walls of friends homes, in books and magazines, anywhere. I started trying to analyze them. What I liked, what I didn't, and why. I tried to pay more attention to the prints I would get from my own photos and why they did (or didn't) come out the way I had expected they would when I envisioned the image as I took it. I read everything I could about photography. I began to realize some of these reasons were based on my skill, some based on technical limitations, and some based on the things not currently in my control, namely processing of the film and printing.
That's where I'll leave off for now. In part two I'll delve more deeply into my thoughts on how important film processing and printing are to the creation of the image and that will eventually lead to a discussion of the current more popular digital methods of processing.