Can we just go back to simple negatives?

Time for a digital photography vent. I am so stressed out at the moment! Bear with me!

I have to say, digital has NOT been a walk in the park. The taking of the pictures has been simple (that part isn't hard for me - I look forward to, and really love, that part!), but it's the work flow after that has been kicking my butt! As I sit here now, I am downloading an event to the web for the THIRD time. It's so frustrating. I should only have to do it once. But that's how you catch on, right? You live and learn and learn again! (Or I should say you live, make mistakes, make more mistakes, and then make one more mistake and hope your client doesn't wish s/he had never hired you!)

My biggest problem has been figuring out everything after the picture-taking. And it's taken just about every wedding this year for me to do my "living and learning". I really hope I don't get a bad reputation after this year. It is just so hard. I thought "going digital" would mean less work, but so far it hasn't. It is hard. And I went to college for what I am doing now. I still am completely lost sometimes! Now I know why some photographers are even more lost than I am, and, have terrible output because they don't know how to do their workflow right. I cannot imagine taking all this on and know absolutely nothing about computers or Photoshop!

One of the hardest things for me, I think, is getting into this so late in the game. I'm the last one in town to have "gone digital" and so I feel so behind. I feel like such a newbie and really I'm not. I went to school to do what I'm doing in my workflow, but the rate I'm going, you would never know it. Everything that I've dove into with digital photography is still changing and will be changing; over and over and over.

Photoshop, for one, is never ending. It's a program that you can never learn in full because there is always something more to learn. One thing always leads to other things in the program so it's easy to either feel like you aren't doing enough to make your photo work or else you have done too much.

And then the digital world as a whole is changing so rapidly all the time, that I don't really think anyone will ever be where they really want to be. There will always be better cameras coming out, there will always be better Photoshop versions, there will always be better digital storage, there will always be better printers, there will always be new tricks of the trade. It's because of all of these things that I actually wonder if I made the right decision? I am just not one to compete for all this and so I'm afraid I'm going to get lost in the jumble.

With negative film you just took the picture, printed over and over from the original negatives and your customer had to be happy with that. Now it's never ending as to what you can do, so pretty soon the client is never going to be happy because they are always expecting more.

While the average consumer believes digital photography has become the answer we were all looking for, I myself, sometimes wonder. It has definitely opened up great new avenues and I really love getting to do what I do to my photos. It's really fun and I can get as creative as I want with each wedding that I do. But I question whether it's really all that worth it when it's so darn stressful? You have to go through so many steps just to get to that final finished print. While it's so great to have all the things we've got now with having digital photography, tonight I am starting to wonder if it is possible to go back to simplicity? (Doesn't simplicity usually mean less stress? Why wouldn't all photographers want this?)

Bottom line is this: I love photography. It's my life and I really think it's what I was born to do. I just have to suck it up that negative film is out, digital is in and that I have made the switch and so I need to stay where I am. Unfortunately, film is going out the door. Soon there will be nothing but digital. So I have to stick with it because trying to be the "different one" in the photography world is not going to fly anymore. Digital is here to stay. It definitely doesn't mean I have to like it, though.

Ok, vent over.

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