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|| News Item: Posted 2004-06-30

In The Bag: Film?
By Brian Davies, The Eugene Register - Guard

Photo by Brian Davies / The Register - Guard

Photo by Brian Davies / The Register - Guard

Inside Brian Davies' bag.
The photo staff here at The Register-Guard is probably one of the last in the nation where a camera is still a light-tight box. We've been the unwitting beneficiaries of a decade of conservative thought regarding digital photography. I mean, digital IS just a fad, right? But to make a long story short...we still shoot film for 98% of our work. (Yes...insert joke here).

But there are advantages to shooting film for me. I'm notorious for not wanting to think when I shoot. Fretting about pixels doesn't help my photography. And I don't want to notice the camera when I look through it. I want to be absorbed only by the subject. I know precisely what film will do in every conceivable situation and never have to monkey around with the dreaded white balance. This is the source of some humor at my expense because I am considered technophobic around the office. But that is too simple a conclusion. I just like to be instinctive with my gear.

So I've accepted that I am a creature of old habits. The gear I use is as comfortable and familiar as a pair of old blue jeans. If you think you're needing the newest lens to take better pictures, you're kidding yourself to some extent. Photography is about your vision and technology should not be a distraction, but an extension of that vision.

With the Register-Guard looking hard at converting to digital gear in the next year, I suppose it's inevitable that I will soon be carrying one of these homogenized camera kits that everyone else seems to have. I will mourn the loss of my beloved aperture ring. The confident, metallic slam of the camera back will be replaced by the quaint snap of the flash card door. Goodbye firm, helicoid focusing. My bored left hand will probably atrophy without you.

But until that day, I invite you to peek into my tattered, retro Domke. My colleague Tom Boyd, never one to shy away from hammering a good-natured barb, likes to say my gear was his dream 1989!

2 Nikon F4s bodies
- 24mm f/2.8
- 28mm f/2.0
- 35mm f//1.4
- 55mm f/3.5 macro (made in 1976)
- 135mm f/2.0
- 300mm f//2.8
- 1.4 converter

1 Leica M6
- 35/2 Summicron
- 90/2.8 Tele-Elmarit

2 SB-28's
1 SU-4 slave
2 SC-17 cords
gaffer tape
Quantum remotes w/cords
gold/white reflector
Minolta V meter
mini tripod
Garmin iQue 3600 GPS navigation

(Brian Davies is a staff photographer with the Eugene Register Guard, which proves that spending time in Fresno does not hinder one's career. He will also be leading a breakout session on "Community Journalism" at the Sports Shooter Workshop & Luau 2004 in November.)

Related Links:
Brian Davies' member page

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