As I was perusing my photography forums the other day, I stumbled across a post where a guy complained that he was feeling uninspired in his photos, and was considering trying film. As one would expect on a forum devoted to digital photography, he was discouraged from this line of thought by most of the other participants in the thread. This in itself is neither unusual nor worth writing about. However, one of the criticisms of film and film-users struck me as interesting:
"Its nostalgia by both those who did shoot
film way back when and those who have
never shot film."
I found this to be an interesting criticism, because in my view nostalgia is the fundamental matter of photographs, which are just echoes of moments past. As soon as a photograph is made, it is a representation of a world that no longer exists. We use photographs to record places we’ve been, things we’ve seen, and people we’ve loved. There is no way to repudiate nostalgia without condemning the practice of photography. I wholeheartedly admit that I shoot film cameras with a sense of nostalgia, and I feel no need to apologize for it!