certification and film v. digital
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  1. #1
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    Default certification and film v. digital

    I am curious - it seems that skill with film and skill with digital images are different enough to merit separate certifications? Is this so, do you think?

    If it is true, then why require film photogs to "know" digital info and digital photogs to "know" film? I understand there is a LOT to photography that has nothing to do with film v. digital... just mulling this over in my head.

  2. #2
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    I think it goes along the same lines as the "specialties" -- you may be only a portrait photographer, but you will be expected to be knowledgeable about wedding and commerical photography to some extent as well.

    The knowledge about film is honestly the basics -- which I don't think it hurts to know (but then, I've printed in a traditional darkroom, so maybe I'm biased!). I think it has to do with having a well-rounded foundation of knowledge -- which will enable you to problem-solve better when you are placed in an unfamiliar situation.

    A lot of us don't use view cameras (you know...those things with the bellows )... but the basics of that are still good to know. Now, I'm not saying we should learn about everything in DETAIL ... but the basics behind these techniques and methods can be applied to other situations. The zone system is something that traditionally was used with film -- It was tedious to learn, but having that knowledge to apply to my digital shooting techniques is invaluable to me .
    Betsy Finn, Cr.Photog., CPP
    bphotoart :: learnwithbetsy :: email

  3. #3

    Default What an interesting post...

    ...and certainly worth discussion. You could argue that digital should take over and consume the certification process as all photographic processes other than printing will be digital if they aren't already.

    The vast amount of information about digital could warrant its own certification test as well.

    How about a portion of the test for non-techical information (posing, lighting, filters) and a portion for just technical stuff (color management, optics, camera engineering, mathematical theory, etc.)?
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  4. #4

    Default You could be right

    The exam and the "vetting" process has changed over the years and probably will continue to. Right now there are specialty endorsements that can be obtained along with the general title of Certified. For example one can be further distinguished as a Certified Professional Photographer with a Portrait Specialty Endorsement. So there may come a day when Film photographer becomes a specialty endorsement. Film based businesses are a dying breed. I think they will be more a specialty in the future than digital businesses. Digital photographers will be/are the norm. People who know how to work with film will be the specialty.

    The process keeps changing. When I first certified an applicant was required to provide three character references, three client references and three credit references, i.e accounts in good standing with vendors like labs, frame companies etc. I think that part of the requirements has been done away with for the new certifieds? Probably since the certification was taken over by an independent service. I don't think CPAs have to provide those kind of references to be certified.
    Last edited by David_A._Lottes; 11-03-2006 at 08:48 PM.

  5. #5
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    My memory may be faulty, but I took the test within the last 12 months and I don't recall a great many questions that were truly digital or film alone. Camera types? View cameras are used with both film or digital backs. The color spectrum? The behavior of light is the same regardless of the sensor.

    Where there were questions on tools or techniques unique to either medium, they were quite general, as I recall.

    The difference between taking pictures with a view camera and taking pictures with a Leica are far greater than the differences between taking pictures with a Leica M6 and a Leica M8, so if they can expect every Certified Professional Photographer to know something about both view camera photography and small-camera photography, they can expect a Certified Professional Photographer to know something about photographing with both a Leica M6 and a Leica M8.

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  6. #6

    Default There were loads of film-only questions...

    ...included chemistry of color processing, CC filters (now obsolete with digital), color cross-over, developer questions (oxidation inhibitors, etc.) and the like.

    I had very few digital questions, which I found lacking.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by KirkDarling View Post
    Where there were questions on tools or techniques unique to either medium, they were quite general, as I recall.
    That was my experience, and I just took the exam recently.
    Betsy Finn, Cr.Photog., CPP
    bphotoart :: learnwithbetsy :: email

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wilson Hitchings View Post
    ...included chemistry of color processing, CC filters (now obsolete with digital), color cross-over, developer questions (oxidation inhibitors, etc.) and the like.

    I had very few digital questions, which I found lacking.
    How long ago was that? The 2006 test was all-new, even in its basic concept. I can't recall any questions as in-depth as color processing chemistry, color crossover, oxidation inhibitors and such. That's old "long term memory" stuff for me, but I think I'd recall having to dredge it up.

    The theory of using CC filters to be very much useful in the digital world. Photoshop uses the terminology and concepts, and, in fact, Canon cameras since the 20D actually have a built-in CC filter capability...for those who shoot JPEG. Don't you mostly shoot JPEG?
    --Elephants can swim...
    ...and very gracefully.
    Knowing that,
    I do believe
    Anything is possible for me.

    Kirk Darling, CPP

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by David A. Lottes View Post
    When I first certified an applicant was required to provide three character references, three client references and three credit references, i.e accounts in good standing with vendors like labs, frame companies etc. I think that part of the requirements has been done away with for the new certifieds? Probably since the certification was taken over by an independent service. I don't think CPAs have to provide those kind of references to be certified.
    For sure also in my case an application was required first, asking references.
    I had no clue that those are gone! First I heard!

    Most States have boards that control CPA status, with tests and licensing etc. CPA is not handled by a service, like CPP is now.

    The original concept of PPA creating CPP was that the consumer might correlate to their streotype of a CPA.

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    George Hawkins
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  10. #10
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    Um, I believe that the organization that handles the CPAs are also handling CPPs. That's what I heard a while back, anyway.
    Michael
    Michael Gan,M.Photog.Cr. CPP,
    Meritage House of Photography

    If your business depends on you, you don't own a business-you have a job. And it's the worst job in the world because you're working for a lunatic... You can't close it when you want to, because if it's closed you don't get paid. You can't leave it when you want to, because if you leave there's nobody there to do the work. You can't sell it when you want to, because who wants to buy a job?
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