From: Dinorah de Jesús Rodriguez (email suppressed)
Date: Wed Jul 21 2010 - 09:20:33 PDT
you've touched the cockles of my heart here, Tom. i know all about the never-ending plethora of new possibilities in digital, and i LOVE working in digital media too, and in fact i often re-process stuff i've done in 16mm by digitizing.
But everything you say here is still fundamental to my practice and i'm sure it's central to many others' experience as well. The machines are toys to play with, and i happen to still like these toys. and like you, i have my toys and they're paid for. For me, the additional element of getting to write, draw, scratch and paint on the celluloid is also essential, and this does not have to do with any film-vs-video debate, it's just that i genuinely love working with those etching needles and paint brushes...
i think that those of us who work with archival material perhaps see the future of 16mm filmmaking differently than others who are shooting original in 16mm. We are far less affected by the discontinuation of film stocks and processing chemicals, and by the disappearance of lab services than our counterparts who are shooting and hoping to release work in 16mm. For us collectors and recyclers of found footage, the transition (now almost 30-years-long) from film to video in the industry has led to many advantages specific to our particular fetish - with the advent of ebay, i now have unlimited access to volumes of celluloid that i would never have otherwise gotten my hands (and etching needles) on. i think this factor certainly accounts for my ever-optimistic viewpoint. As i see it, there will always be old material to recycle anew.
Btw, to add to our growing list of present-day technologies, silverware as we know it (knives, forks, spoons) were invented around the 14th or 15th Century, no??? but i swear i just used one of those this morning, while texting on my cell phone and listening to the radio...
On Jul 21, 2010, at 11:37 AM, Tom Whiteside wrote:
> Someone mentioned that when people speak of handling film, and the materiality of it, eyes tend to glaze over ….
> But it is real for me, I’ve been handling film for more than thirty years and I do enjoy the physical work on the editing bench. I’m sure many people have the same experience. I work from archival material, so this isn’t about shooting – I haven’t loaded film into a camera in years. But opening cans in the editing room, putting film on the projector, cutting reels apart and making things new by recombining the old – there is a physical aspect of the work that is enjoyable, and it is unique to the medium. For the audience the experience of the film screening remains ephemeral, but for the maker the physical work comes first.
Dinorah de Jesús Rodríguez
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