Michael Firstlight

Lives in United States Weaverville, NC, United States
Works as a Enthusiast of Life
Joined on Apr 5, 2007
About me:

After more than five decades since I developed and printed my first roll of Tri-X using a cocktail of D76, Dektol, Stop Bath and Fixer, photography runs through my veins. Actually, little has fundamentally changed - the silver halide platelets are just digital now :-)

I majored in photography, film, broadcasting, and journalism in college in the 70's, worked as staff for ABC-TV out of college - one of the original big three US-based TV networks, then took a job as a corporate staff photographer for Big Blue. I'm now back in my own studio full-time doing mostly portrait and wedding photography along with some commercial work.

Comments

Total: 68, showing: 1 – 20
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In reply to:

Fancy Termite: And just a 5 years ago people was laughing at Sony shooters with full-frame MILCs

@fancy termite, I have been a member of DPR since it started in 1999 (this ID since 2007), I've made 4300 posts on this ID alone since 2007 - you've made 28 posts. I don't think there is anyone on all of DPR that would question my credibility vs. yours - you have none.

Link | Posted on Dec 30, 2021 at 16:09 UTC
In reply to:

Fancy Termite: And just a 5 years ago people was laughing at Sony shooters with full-frame MILCs

@fancy termite - you are clearly trolling. I've had a production Z9 for the last 3 days. I avoided MILC until now as I've been a die-hard OVF DSLR user. The Z9 is everything and more it was expected to be. I am using the FTZII with my AF-S lenses; it is totally transparent. I've had a half dozen pro DSLRs - the Z9 is a game-changer - you have no experience with it and thus can speak with no authority; I can. I can assure you and everyone here that the latest crop of MILCs spell the death of new DSLRs. Existing DSLRs - my D850 included, will remain useful tools and produce spectacular images for many years to come, but like others, I am 100% convinced that new DSLR development is deader than a doornail except for a few that might have already been in R&D.

Link | Posted on Dec 30, 2021 at 10:06 UTC
In reply to:

Michael Firstlight: The article isn't disappointing, but to classify it as a Film Friday article at all is extremely disappointing since it has nothing to do with film whatsoever. Yeah, you got us film types and made us read a digital camera review - why not just skip the week's Film Friday article altogether and not mislead. We film folks read articles labeled Film Friday for FILM-related topic matter. For digital reading matters, I'm far more interested in reading about the Nikon Z9 camera I have on order. I think we grown-ups here are capable of selecting how we want to budget our reading time and focus rather than be spoofed into fake subject matter - it's blatantly offensive.

Mike

So the assumption is, folks that use film use if because they prefer rangefinder cameras? And if they want a digital camera they'll not prefer an SLR-type digital camera? Is that the premise here? Really?

Link | Posted on Dec 23, 2021 at 10:08 UTC
In reply to:

HamishGill: For anyone complaining about this being in the film Friday feature, I’d definitely recommend reading my article and/or actually trying the camera before losing too much sleep. Clearly it’s not film, but it definitely blurs the lines in terms of part of the user experience.

I've been a member of DPR since it started back in late '98/early'99 (originally under a different ID in the first few years). I fought tooth and nail for years to get a dedicated film forum since film+digital is a valid genre of digital photography that DPR gave the short shaft and little respect for years. So yah, I'm incensed that the article was misleading and promoted as a film-related piece. I consider that intellectually dishonest. Here's an idea - how about you write a piece that advocates digital users go out and invest a bundle in a 4x5 and a digital back and experience what it feels like to use film? At least they'd experience real and complete optical perspective control, 'eh?

Link | Posted on Dec 19, 2021 at 14:08 UTC
In reply to:

HamishGill: For anyone complaining about this being in the film Friday feature, I’d definitely recommend reading my article and/or actually trying the camera before losing too much sleep. Clearly it’s not film, but it definitely blurs the lines in terms of part of the user experience.

Man, that's a weak defense. You didn't adequately answer my question. Some of the "feeling"? That's your justification? Heck, I'll take out my cheap Ricoh 500G if I want to get the feeling of shooting with a real rangefinder. You published an article under the false banner of film to lure readers that advocates film folks go out and spend a huge bundle of money on a digital rangefinder camera to get a "feeling" of shooting with a film camera? That's called promotion - and that's the spoof. You crossed the line, and many of us are offended. Maybe that wasn't your intent, I'll give you that, but it's the outcome.

Link | Posted on Dec 19, 2021 at 13:17 UTC
In reply to:

commiebiker: One film article a week. That's all we asked for

Slightly off-topic? OK, so I have to credit you for giving me the biggest belly laugh of the week. That's tantamount to saying Abe Lincoln is just lightly dead.

:-)

Link | Posted on Dec 18, 2021 at 18:23 UTC
In reply to:

HamishGill: For anyone complaining about this being in the film Friday feature, I’d definitely recommend reading my article and/or actually trying the camera before losing too much sleep. Clearly it’s not film, but it definitely blurs the lines in terms of part of the user experience.

Yah, I read it. How does it blur the lines between digital and film? Because it's a rangefinder (fail), or because it doesn't have a rear screen (fail again - if you don't want to look at your LCD, don't look!). No, it's doesn't remotely blur any significant line whatsoever. This was opportunist spoof marketing at its worst.

The only thing you got right is that it is "clearly not film"; it's not film-related in the least.

PS Editors - you just ticked off most of us in the film sector big-time. I'd recommend you edit this and remove the Film Friday label to save face with the film community. I use a LOT of advanced digital tech with film - not just scanners but digital film processors, digital print processors, digital meters - even digital enlargers, digital zone analyzers, digital densitometers, digital split-grade units (think Heiland). There's far more to digital+film that you can cover, but don't.

Mike

Link | Posted on Dec 18, 2021 at 18:06 UTC

The article isn't disappointing, but to classify it as a Film Friday article at all is extremely disappointing since it has nothing to do with film whatsoever. Yeah, you got us film types and made us read a digital camera review - why not just skip the week's Film Friday article altogether and not mislead. We film folks read articles labeled Film Friday for FILM-related topic matter. For digital reading matters, I'm far more interested in reading about the Nikon Z9 camera I have on order. I think we grown-ups here are capable of selecting how we want to budget our reading time and focus rather than be spoofed into fake subject matter - it's blatantly offensive.

Mike

Link | Posted on Dec 18, 2021 at 17:59 UTC as 12th comment | 2 replies

Thanks for the chuckle. I guess the film/analog haters never consider the comparative cost of constant digital camera upgrades, software and software upgrades, computers and computer upgrades, and the cost of ink for those of us that print digital. Heck, just one of my eight Epson 7880 cartridges cost over $100 each that I go through like water. It's all relative. Methinks the critics have a comparative reality problem.

Link | Posted on Dec 4, 2021 at 12:04 UTC as 25th comment | 6 replies
In reply to:

Tom Schum: I was thrilled back in 2002 when I found out digital cameras don't require film. I've mostly shot digital since then.
But analog film cameras are a different paradigm and I can see that many would have more pleasure shooting them instead of digital. You buy the film, shoot the film, get it developed and printed and that's what you get. No time spent in front of a computer endlessly processing digital images. Yes, I get it.
Analog film can be a good hobby. Model trains are a good hobby too, and have you priced some of these H0 gauge engines lately? I'd rather sit in front of my computer and make my digital images look like film. It's challenging, and cheaper!

Oh, and time? With digital, most have lost the pleasure of slowing down and being intentional as craftsmen and craftswomen - and that is the true cost that digital has robbed from the craft of photography.

Link | Posted on Dec 4, 2021 at 11:42 UTC
In reply to:

Tom Schum: I was thrilled back in 2002 when I found out digital cameras don't require film. I've mostly shot digital since then.
But analog film cameras are a different paradigm and I can see that many would have more pleasure shooting them instead of digital. You buy the film, shoot the film, get it developed and printed and that's what you get. No time spent in front of a computer endlessly processing digital images. Yes, I get it.
Analog film can be a good hobby. Model trains are a good hobby too, and have you priced some of these H0 gauge engines lately? I'd rather sit in front of my computer and make my digital images look like film. It's challenging, and cheaper!

Yes, I own an enlarger - two of them in fact. I process 6x7 and 4x5 and print up to 30x40. It's fun! I find working with film in the field and in the darkroom every bit as enjoyable and satisfying as shooting with my D850 and post-processing in PS and LR. For 50 years I've loved the craft, the FAR greater skill required to do and do well, and the immense gratification of creating, sharing, showing, and even selling hand-made fiber-based silver gelatin prints that very few have the skills and ability to produce and produce well. The cost? Are you kidding me? The Nikon Z9 body alone I have on pre-order cost more than all the film and paper I could ever use - not to mention my massive investment in lenses, computers, software, printers, ink... And I never need to spend any money upgrading my analog cameras, lenses, or darkroom gear. I love digital - I'm all digital for professional gigs, but it can't match the pleasure I find working with film and printing as a craft.

Link | Posted on Dec 4, 2021 at 11:41 UTC
In reply to:

papajohnny: You didn't mention the memory performance. My 10 y.o. Xeon box easily beats the best modern Core system in multithreaded tests. Because the memory bus is twice wider and it has 8x8GB SIM modules. Plus the MB has another socket for the second CPU, so it's easy to expand. Xeon is absolutely a win for efficient multithreading and scales for multiple CPUs.

DDR5 and an i9 12900 OCed for me shortly to replace my aging 6-core i7 3930 that I built many years ago (2012) which is still running strong at 4.4GHz 24/7 on an AIO cooler. Waiting for the CPU and the ROG Maximus Hero Z690 MOB release next month.

Link | Posted on Oct 20, 2021 at 00:11 UTC
On article Apple iPhone 13 Pro sample gallery (467 comments in total)

Impressive! But the teat I really want is to see these images printed at 16x24 and larger to see how they hold up compared to a DSLR/MILC.

Link | Posted on Oct 9, 2021 at 15:51 UTC as 78th comment | 1 reply

It's now a camera that also happens to be a phone and host other apps.

Link | Posted on Sep 14, 2021 at 21:53 UTC as 65th comment
In reply to:

Alan2dpreview: These tokens will eventually be worth as much as NYC subway tokens are worth today.

Very true, but in the meantime, some are going to make a killing.

Link | Posted on Sep 13, 2021 at 02:34 UTC
In reply to:

Michael Firstlight: 1) Do I have to pay a gas fee for every single image, or can I pay it once for a collection of images I want to sell an interest?

2) If its for a whole colelction, can I add and remove images to/from a collection without incurring additional gas fees?

3) Can offer a set number of interests (fractions) for each image (as opposed to selling 100% interest of an image only)? Do I, the original owner, have to pay a gas fee for every sale or does only the buyer pay a gas fee as part of a sale?

Thanks in advance.

I think its akin to "minting" a coin - but an electronic version of one that makes your photo (or collection of photos or other artwork) part of the blockchain so it can be put up for sale, immutably tracked, and sold etc.

Link | Posted on Sep 13, 2021 at 00:17 UTC
In reply to:

Michael Firstlight: 1) Do I have to pay a gas fee for every single image, or can I pay it once for a collection of images I want to sell an interest?

2) If its for a whole colelction, can I add and remove images to/from a collection without incurring additional gas fees?

3) Can offer a set number of interests (fractions) for each image (as opposed to selling 100% interest of an image only)? Do I, the original owner, have to pay a gas fee for every sale or does only the buyer pay a gas fee as part of a sale?

Thanks in advance.

And can a seller sell say, just a fraction of an image - say, a limited edition of 10 on something like OpenSea - or does a seller have to sell the entire image?

Link | Posted on Sep 12, 2021 at 16:39 UTC
In reply to:

Michael Firstlight: 1) Do I have to pay a gas fee for every single image, or can I pay it once for a collection of images I want to sell an interest?

2) If its for a whole colelction, can I add and remove images to/from a collection without incurring additional gas fees?

3) Can offer a set number of interests (fractions) for each image (as opposed to selling 100% interest of an image only)? Do I, the original owner, have to pay a gas fee for every sale or does only the buyer pay a gas fee as part of a sale?

Thanks in advance.

Does the seller also pay a gas fee for every image sold in a collection on OpenSea, or only the original gas fee when setting up the collection?

Link | Posted on Sep 12, 2021 at 16:34 UTC

1) Do I have to pay a gas fee for every single image, or can I pay it once for a collection of images I want to sell an interest?

2) If its for a whole colelction, can I add and remove images to/from a collection without incurring additional gas fees?

3) Can offer a set number of interests (fractions) for each image (as opposed to selling 100% interest of an image only)? Do I, the original owner, have to pay a gas fee for every sale or does only the buyer pay a gas fee as part of a sale?

Thanks in advance.

Link | Posted on Sep 12, 2021 at 15:10 UTC as 73rd comment | 6 replies
In reply to:

StaLeveler: I shoot both 4x5 and medium format (Rolleiflex and Pentax 67) and it's great but I do it because I like it. Not because it is practical. Digital is nice too.

Exactly! Most of us that use film, and even moreso, those that do the whole analog process end-to-end, don't do it for convenience, ease, or speed - we do it for the challenge and the love of the process (and also because digital still cannot beat wet B&W fiber prints from MF and LF film). It is understandable that many prefer the ease and speed of digital and would never try or go back to film, but most that use film also use digital - it's not a one or the other proposition.

Link | Posted on Aug 12, 2021 at 10:20 UTC
Total: 68, showing: 1 – 20
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