Digital and Film: Color Capture and Texture (warning, wall of text)

Started Feb 23, 2014 | Discussions thread
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Elby1218 Regular Member • Posts: 130
Digital and Film: Color Capture and Texture (warning, wall of text)

My first camera was a Sigma SD14 DSLR (bought it used around '09), and it was terrible. Literally 99% of its features and abilities were the worst. I couldn't shoot in low light due to horrid ISO, skin tones were all over the place due to white balance issues, it would lock up some times or not write images at all. No editing features, the LCD screen was so basic you could see each pixel with the naked eye from arms length...just the most issues. The reason I got it though was because I had a lurking suspicion the articles I read about the sensor being 'different' were true. As crazy as the camera was, the articles were right. Seemingly randomly I also developed a knack for flower/macro photography, and the camera was right there with me. A layman analogy is that the way the sensor captures the color red is different than the way the mosaic style sensors in Nikon/Canon cameras do. Seems arbitrary and simple, but it lends itself to being a little more robust when it comes to colorful nature shots, as well as a few other implications. Anyway, while I had the Sigma, I tended to give up on other types of photography (like people/events/indoor) entirely because I knew it had such limitations. The converse effect was that I got really good at developing my own style for macro/flower photography. I've never seen sharper images, bar none.

I fell on hard times about two years after I got the camera and like a lot of people would think, when money gets tight, "hobbies" get the axe. I sold the SD14 and lenses. When I had a bit more to spend more recently, I wanted to get back into photography--but in having a second chance and never having tried either of the big two, I figured I'd take the opportunity to do so. I currently own a Nikon D7000, and the same exact Sigma macro lenses I used with my old SD14. While the D7000 excels at the 99% of things the Sigma couldn't do, it's becoming increasingly apparent to me that it can't do the 1%, the flower %, as well as the Sigma could. This isn't an issue for most people I'm sure, but as I spent a couple years developing a certain style and getting enjoyment out of photographing colorful flora, it bothers me more than I'm sure it bothers the average joe.

SO. Where am I going with this? I'm ready to pick up a used Sigma body on ebay and grab my old lenses and get back to taking pictures of what I enjoy most. But before doing so, I kinda had the thought..."gee, maybe I should consider all options instead of just going back to the same setup for those shots". My question, then, is whether, in any capacity, film photography has more to offer in the world of close-ups, color, texture, detail, ambiance, highlights and lowlights, than digital. I know not one damn thing about film. Literally nothing. But I'd hate myself if I invested in my old setup if only to one day find out I could have had more detail, more red, and more positive vibes. Is that something film can potentially offer?

Too long; didn't read: My feeling is that my Nikon DSLR doesn't do macro shots like my old Sigma system did. I want to grab a used Sigma for those shots now, but I'm curious if film might be something to look into instead or as well.

Mods: I couldn't tell if this was more appropriate for the "Macro and Still Life Photography" forum or the "Photographic Science and Technology" forum, so I did one in each. Hopefully I get a different swath of responses, but please feel free to move/delete this post as needed for rules compliance.

 Elby1218's gear list:Elby1218's gear list
Sigma SD15 Nikon D7000 Sigma 70mm F2.8 EX DG Macro +1 more
Nikon D7000 Sigma SD14
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