Film in the newspaper?

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Don Wallace

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This morning, I turned to the arts section of the Toronto newspaper, the Globe and Mail, and almost fell over. There, on the opening page, were three photographs of the dancer Emanuel Sandhu. But they looked wierd. Then it dawned on me: edge numbers! The photos were shot on Tri-X 120 film. I think. Or is it possible just to drop digital photos into a fake frame that makes it look like that old-fashioned "film" stuff?

Here is the equivalent webpage. Scroll down a little.
 

Apertureman

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I work at the newspaper and I know first hand:

1. Yes, it's possible to put a picture into a film frame using Photoshop.

2. It is unlikely that the graphic artist would fake that because there usually is no time to tinker around with images, other than adjust settings for the press output. It's a pretty fast-paced work environment.

3. I would have cropped out the frame, though.
 

arigram

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Even though, it is possible, I believe that they are genuine.
 
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Don Wallace

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I work at the newspaper and I know first hand:

1. Yes, it's possible to put a picture into a film frame using Photoshop.

2. It is unlikely that the graphic artist would fake that because there usually is no time to tinker around with images, other than adjust settings for the press output. It's a pretty fast-paced work environment.

3. I would have cropped out the frame, though.

Thanks for the response. Is film still used at the G&M and other newspapers, or is this really an exception? Curious minds want to know!
 

Apertureman

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Thanks for the response. Is film still used at the G&M and other newspapers, or is this really an exception? Curious minds want to know!

It's rather an exception. Actually, in my career, I never had to scan frames, though we have all the equipment. We do scan prints quite often, though.
 

Mike Wilde

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The arts section of the Globe does run film stuff from time to time, and I believe it to be legitimate. I have even seen from 4x5 at some point in the past year. There may be more, but I limit my reading to the Saturday Globe. Otherwise I would be reading papers after work, instead of wasting my time in the darkroom.
 

Mike Wilde

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Oh there was an article somewhere of what Fred Lum - one of the Globe photogrpahers was packing off ot Afghanistan, and there was definitely some 120 for his personal work. Then as I write this reply I google Fred Lum Photographer, and find articles that he is definitely a film guy at heart.
 

Colin Corneau

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I know Fred personally. He is indeed a terrific photographer and a genuine, good guy. He's been an enormous help to me over the years.

He's also a dedicated film shooter and the image in question is indeed "legit" -- that is to say, shot on film and presented as such.

The Globe is a quality newspaper with an uncompromising commitment to ethics - that comes from the calibre of its shooters as well as its guiding management.

Fred also had a very good series of images from a special series the paper did on the Alberta oilsands -- portraits shot on 4x5 and developed on the road!

PS - Far as I know, Fred has never been to Afghanistan.
 

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We had some shots of one of our bosses done in our company a few months back. The magazine (a reputable and well known weekly periodical in my country) sent a photographer to our offices with a Hassy setup and roll film, and I was quite impressed by the images she created. I don't know whether this was standard procedure or something unique to this photographer, but professional film shooters still seem to exist, even in the news paper business.
 

Jeff Kubach

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I love to hear about this. At least newspapers and other publications are not totally digital.

Jeff
 

Colin Corneau

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It's impossible to meet current deadlines and reasonable workflow with film only. But it certainly is as valid an aesthetic choice (perhaps even more so than ever) for specific projects.
 

Rudeofus

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It's impossible to meet current deadlines and reasonable workflow with film only. But it certainly is as valid an aesthetic choice (perhaps even more so than ever) for specific projects.
If you spend 2 hours setting up a shot, or spend a day thinking about this setup beforehand, film won't limit you speed wise. If everything needs to be completed and ready in 20 minutes, then digital rules, but film or film cameras have little to offer anyway in such an environment. Clearly the periodical I wrote about cared more about quality than about speed, and the published results showed it. This was not an art or photography related magazine btw.
 

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I would hope that they didn't drop the photos into frames, that seems pretty unethical. I was the photo editor for my college newspaper for a little bit and I would not have been too stoked on a designer doing that.
 

Colin Corneau

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rphenning - I can assure you quality/ethics control at the paper in question is rock solid. That starts with the calibre of photographer they employ.

I should have qualified my last statement by mentioning the vast majority of regular, daily assignments make digital the medium of choice. I believe that myself and I am a dedicated film shooter..I guess it boils down to "a time and a place". And an artist is a person who knows that time and knows that place.
 

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I can't speak to the newspaper you saw and have little idea about the prevalence of film in reporting, but I can tell you that it is highly fashionable in certain circles (food and lifestyle magazines, at least) to place 120 edge-markings around digital photographs. I've seen it a few times in magazines and it's particularly glaring when you note that 80% of the shots have the same frame number. And you see frames with the markings on the wrong edges. And colour frames that have edge-markings from B&W films, even.
 

B&Wpositive

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Yup. There's a PJ at one of our state's papers who for a while last year was doing all sorts of things, such as shooting in b&w, shooting medium format film, holgas, etc. But now that the paper (which has a ton of history behind it) was merged with another media company, I don't see those sorts of photos lately.
 

Colin Corneau

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That's very unfortunate.

Giving people less, and charging more. What a great model for success in business.
 

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Don Wallace

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I can't speak to the newspaper you saw and have little idea about the prevalence of film in reporting, but I can tell you that it is highly fashionable in certain circles (food and lifestyle magazines, at least) to place 120 edge-markings around digital photographs. I've seen it a few times in magazines and it's particularly glaring when you note that 80% of the shots have the same frame number. And you see frames with the markings on the wrong edges. And colour frames that have edge-markings from B&W films, even.

This is exactly that I thought was happening but, according to sources from the paper who seem to know, this photographer is the real deal! I think its great.
 

wogster

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It's impossible to meet current deadlines and reasonable workflow with film only. But it certainly is as valid an aesthetic choice (perhaps even more so than ever) for specific projects.

You know, every newspaper in the world did exactly that up until the mid 1990's when digital technology was finally good enough for publication. Heck a few probably still do.

Weekend sections though, often have much longer lead times, I have seen evidence of this. For example a car write up talking about poor A/C even though it's November and you haven't needed the A/C since early September.
 

ajuk

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I work at the newspaper and I know first hand:

1. Yes, it's possible to put a picture into a film frame using Photoshop.

2. It is unlikely that the graphic artist would fake that because there usually is no time to tinker around with images, other than adjust settings for the press output. It's a pretty fast-paced work environment.

3. I would have cropped out the frame, though.

I would have thought that if the guy had shot film he had more time than normal for that story, no?

Could Kodak stop people from using the name of there film with fake film borders if they wanted to?
 

cmacd123

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IANAL - I don't even play one on TV

Could Kodak stop people from using the name of there film with fake film borders if they wanted to?

Probably - it would be an action under "passing off" as the image is not produced on Kodak film. Then again I am not a lawyer and trademark law is very complex with all the court cases over the years.

I have seen mocked up pictures where their was a "film border" but the lettering was made up to fit the article.
 

cmacd123

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You know, every newspaper in the world did exactly that up until the mid 1990's when digital technology was finally good enough for publication. Heck a few probably still do.

Many of the "old standby" products were from that era. 90 second developers, alcohol baths to dry negatives. The Photographer would soup the film, enlarge the still wet negs. make a print and give it a quick pass through fix and wash, run it on a dryer with the most contaminated canvas belt in the world. The print would go to be printed, and then probably thrown away as it would already be faded.

The wire photo machines printed on a paper like tissue that was ready to use as soon as it dried.

Later the negs were re-fixed, re-washed and proper prints made if needed for the library.


Weekend sections though, often have much longer lead times, I have seen evidence of this. For example a car write up talking about poor A/C even though it's November and you haven't needed the A/C since early September.

As do features and magazine sections. The Globe puts out "report on business" magazine once a month, and I have often seen more artistic photos in that publication. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/
 
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