I would be interested to hear people's views about the long term direction of di gital photography, and the impact it will have on large format photography and d arkroom practices in particular. I have seen some discussion to this effect in t he archive but the most recent I found was a year old so I hope people won't min d if I reignite the debate. I am currently saving up a substantial amount of mon ey to buy a large format lens I have covetted for some years. Part of my justifi cation for spending so much money is that it is an investment for life. I am 27 and plan to be using this lens when I am 70.
But will I be able to? Will my new lens be made obsolete by digital in just a fe w years? Will manufacturers bring out a "35mm" digital camera with LF format qua lity at low cost as I have heard a pro photographer say? Will conventional film even be available in five or ten years? I have heard many criticisms of digital photography. The main one I am worried about it does not seem to be as much fun!
In all areas but this I am a technophile. I love all this new digital stuff. But I like fooling around with photographic chemicals, dark slides and enlargers. I am dismayed at the speed with which CD's replaced LP records. Will digital came ras do the same thing and make all my fun a thing of the past? Will film be wide ly available, or will it be made by boutique specialist firms who make fiendishl y expensive film for die hard photographers who insist on doing it the hard way? Or is film quality such that it will always have an edge, in LF at least?
Maybe I have completely misunderstood digital and have nothing to worry about. B ut I would welcome any views before I spend my money! I would be interested in v iews from both die hard digital and old school people.