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What Directors Can Teach Photographers

CJ Chilvers
CJ Chilvers
1 min read

Director David Lynch:

"Everybody and his little brother has a piece of paper and a pencil, but how many great stories have been written on that piece of paper? Now, the same thing is going to happen in cinema."

The same has already happened in photography.

Staying on the topic of the week, film versus digital, I watched Side by Side last night. It's a documentary about the differences between shooting movies on film versus shooting on digital media.  The crux of the documentary seemed to be: digital is an unavoidable fact, but there's some things we can learn about filmmaking from the lovers of film.

David Lynch acted as the Lesser Photographer, reasoning that the cameras were just a tool and a focus on storytelling was far more important. But he was the only one so cool-headed about the future.

Martin Scorcese had a reason for being slow to the digital love fest. He said he could better evaluate a scene when there was a time separation between capture and viewing. This separation is forced by the day or so it takes to develop and print the film. Writers have used this technique forever. It works.

Even among the digital-friendly in the movie, there was an insistence from the old timers that the younger filmmakers needed to slow down a bit and think more about the story. Just because digital affords us greater possibilities, doesn't mean it makes for a better film. Sounds just about right to me.