I took this shot on Wednesday of last week while photographing a student at Skyline Literacy here in Harrisonburg. This woman was learning English as her sixth language. Pretty impressive stuff if you ask me.
So the reason this post is titled 'Fuji Classic Chrome' is because it was shot on the Fuji X-T1, my current all-time favorite camera, and I was able to use the Classic Chrome film simulation. No, this isn't an Instagram filter. This is a carefully crafted digital camera process version modeled after Fuji's Classic Chrome film. It's not a preset, but a Lightroom process that acts as a starting place for post production. I absolutely love this look and the camera that was used to take the shot. As someone who has been a 'Nikon person' throughout my career, I would now say that I'm no longer committed to the Nikon platform, I'm about 80% Fuji XF-mount, 20% Nikon full-frame. I'll save the 20% details for another post.
Film vs Digital: The Never-ending Debate
This actually brings me to a much larger topic that kinda-sorta went away once digital became the 'king' and manufacturing film became a less-then-viable business to be in, and that's film vs digital. I completely understand the nostalgic feeling for film. Heck, I'm so in-love with the look of film that I voluntarily made a crystal-clear digital image appear to be shot on an inferior medium, simply because it offers a look that is almost undefinable, yet adds character to the subject you're shooting. Coming into photography after the great digital battle (the one where digital won and film lost), I didn't even know what people were talking about when they said 'Oh, film was so much better'. Really? I believe the nostalgia for shooting on film is far greater than the actual experience was. Everyone I know who was a working photographer told horror stories of botched rolls of film, mechanical issues stopping them from getting 'the shot', the darkroom workflow as being at the pace of a sea turtle while art directors were demanding they needed shots a day ago, the fragile nature of the medium leading to scratches, gashes, and pops, and the list continues. The notion that we could have the incredible versatility of digital cameras, just switched out with film as the medium, is enough to make your head spin - that's because it isn't possible. Film looks great. There's really no denying that. Film is also permanent, meaning if you completed an assignment on Fuji's Provia 100F, that's the look it'll have forever. Today, you're able to shoot that with 1's and 0's, then match the style in post-production. And don't go telling me 'it's not the same, man' - yeah, we know it's not - it's better. You don't have any of the downsides of film, but all of the upsides. Seems like a no-brainer to me.