The Online Photographer

Check out our new site at!

Saturday, March 17, 2007

The 'I Use Film' Ribbon

by Peter Robinson

Peter Robinson, Untitled [Didcot Railway Centre]

Badger Graphic's little flashing message, and also MJMiller's comment in the "Wisconsin Stalwart" post, made me think we film users should make it known that we use film, not just so that other film users know they aren't alone, but for the people coming into photography now who may be under the impression there's no alternative to digital (I know, I've come across some).

To this end, I'm proposing a "I use film" ribbon. Wearing a ribbon seems to be the in way to show your support for the latest good cause, so why not a "film ribbon"? I've made one (an image anyway) and pinned it to my Web site. If anyone else wants to do the same, you can download copies off my site—just click the ribbon on the front page.

Show your support for film and if just one other person buys a roll as a consequence, it'll have been worth it.



Blogger craig16229 said...

Here here. I love film, prefer film, and still shoot it whenever I can. Because of demands on my time right now, though, I do shoot alot of digital. The thing that gets to me is some photographers I have encountered while I happened to have a DSLR in hand who have so much as told me digital is not photography. My response is to that is here

3:19 PM  
Blogger David A. Goldfarb said...

I think I'll just make an analog version next time I'm editing Super-8.

5:06 PM  
Blogger S_Lallement said...

Great idea.

I have put the ribbon on my webpage.

Sebastien Lallement

6:42 PM  
Blogger tim atherton said...

oh dear - this seems like a rather unnecessary and ill-conceived idea, surely?

6:59 PM  
Blogger Kevin said...

Scroll to the bottom of the page, on the right.

8:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh I guess now I'll have to put an image of a compact flashcard in the bottom corner on my website!

9:30 PM  
Blogger stanco said...

I've avoided the whole tattoo thing for many a year since the the whole concept of being "original" by having them seems way undone by their very proliferation. But lately I confess I've been toying with the idea of sporting a roll of Tri-X...

9:51 PM  
Blogger Gary Nylander said...

As a long time user of film and recently digital ( past 5 years ) I'm not sure if I need a "film ribbon" to identify that I'm a film shooter, I love using film to create my vision but other photographers will use whatever medium best suits their particular vision whether it be film or digital, I think its the creative process and the end result that matters most.

9:58 PM  
Blogger shaggy dog pix said...

Which film? Format, that is. 35mm? 120? 4x5? 5x7? 8x10? Black and white? Colour negative? Colour positive? Polaroid?

Why not an "I use daguerreotype" ribbon? Or an "I use oil-based paints" ribbon? Or, "I use crushed berries on rock" ribbon?

Isn't it the picture that counts?

10:44 PM  
Blogger david vatovec said...

Isn't photograpphy about ideas?

4:01 AM  
Blogger Mike Johnston said...

"Isn't it the picture that counts?"

Okay, if it is, then you may shoot for the rest of your career using a circa-2000, 2-megapixel 1/1.8" digicam.


7:18 AM  
Blogger Mike Johnston said...

"Isn't photograpphy about ideas?"

And you may not use a camera at all. A pencil and lined notepaper for you. That should be sufficient to record your ideas.


7:19 AM  
Blogger rhythmimages said...

. . . and you can use a Brownie.

I understand the need to support film use so as to increase your chances of having readily available supplies, but I keep running into this film promotion in the context of puritiy of the art form as if the medium was indeed more important than the message.

8:45 AM  
Blogger Fotoguy said...

This discussion does bring back fond memories........trudging off to the local photofinisher for colour developing, waiting for a day or a week for results. Then choosing an image and arguing with the lab about colour, contrast, cropping and length of time for finished prints. Of course my favorite...the smell of B&W developer/fixer on my hands when I woke up in the morning.....

9:48 AM  
Blogger rfpereira said...

Great idea. It's already on my Multiply website (it's in Portuguese).

10:18 AM  
Blogger eh3edinburgh said...

Last summer I went into the Apple shop in Glasgow to have a look at the new Mac Books. I had my Nikon F80 around my neck. I do have a D70s but that day I just fancied using, you know, the F word…

The young salesman saw me admiring the Mac Book and asked if I had my USB cord with me. I didn’t quite grasp what he meant at first, but then I caught on.

“It’s a film camera”, I said.

He was dumfounded. “You mean, it’s like, analogue?”

I retreated to the nearest pub for a few pints.

11:19 AM  
Blogger Mike Johnston said...

"I keep running into this film promotion in the context of puritiy of the art form as if the medium was indeed more important than the message."

I don't think it's a matter of purity so much as tradition. Film has a hundred and thirty years or so of history; digital has twenty, or, as a viable medium, half that. There's more depth to film's tradition, more richness to its accomplishment, mainly as a function of that duration.


12:04 PM  
Blogger MHMG said...

Peter's ribbon idea struck a sentimental chord. It is now on my fledgling new website... plus a commentary Peter, MIke, and others might enjoy reading.

Mark McCormick-Goodhart

9:21 AM  
Blogger Georg said...


i'm in, because: shooting film is not about not shooting digital, but about caring for results. It's about deciding for yourself, and spending a bit more time if it's worth it.

.... pompous movie score fading out here, finishing titles ...

so i shoot film because a
like to.


10:47 AM  
Blogger Andrew said...

Speaking of film ribbons, in Hebrew, there is one word for both movie (film) and ribbon - "seret." This leads to an amusing turn of phrase. The Hebrew word for blue is "kachol." So in Hebrew, "seret kachol" means both "blue ribbon" and "blue movie" (with sexually graphic content).

1:11 PM  
Blogger GearGuys said...

4 years ago I thought digital was the rage. Got me a digicam and snapped away. Two years later, the thing developed a white screen on the back which came and went, it started taking grainy pictures, and then it didn't want to read the memory stick. It died. 2 years on, I finally got a replacement for my digicam, after long deliberation: Minolta Hi-Matic 7s. My next camera: Yashica Electro 35 CC. Why Film again...why film, I'm 27 years old for gordons sake: Its a 30 year old camera that still works, AND I was able to fix it. And I now take picutes, not snapshots. With film I am learning to look at the image, to decide what it is I am trying to capture on film, to take a picture, a moment in time. With my digicam I have numerous folders full of snapshots, none of which I am interested in printing. Film teaches you things digital never will...IMHO.

3:21 AM  
Blogger robynthemusiclover said...

Yay people that love film too! <3 I'm a high school student and we have our own working black and white dark room! I love it so much much because anyone can take out a digital camara snap a photo, up load it, and the print it. ( and do basic things to it like croping on photo shop). But it takes skill and training to learn how to load a flim camara, set it up for the right flim ,know what the camera is telling you about the lighting and how to fix it, to know how to use fliters when needed, then taking out the full roll and using a black bag to prepare it to be developed, mix the chemicals propertly and time them right, know the whole prosses of developing, then know how to go in to the dark room with your negitives and frame and crop them with an enlarger and timing how much or how little light you need to expose the paper to, finally knowing how to deveolp the photo and framing it. Now which one takes more practice? and which one tending to come out with better results? FILM.
film is NOT dead!!!!

1:11 AM  
Blogger Tim Everett said...

Why I Like Film @

3:43 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home