A few days ago, while browsing a Facebook Fan page of a renowned photography shop in Milan, I stumbled upon a small article written by famous photographer Mario Dondero entitled: “Digital technology is not making us think anymore”.
The punchlines from the article where:
“What matters most is not the instrument being used but the result. What matters are the mind, the education and sensitivity of the photographer. The photographer’s mind is more important than anything else […] Digital technology has destroyed a job, or maybe it has created a new one although the act of taking pictures has lost all the mystery, all the magic […] One hope is left: an old way of taking pictures is gone, but not the necessity to report about life”.
I have followed the debate among the comments on the Fan Page and I’ve given my contribution to it as well. I thought it would have been a good idea to share my opinion with others, so I’m reporting a translation of the comment I’ve written:
Photography is a recording medium which has acquired within the short time of its existence an important and ever increasing semantic variety constituted by the most appropriate technical elements for such task. What Dondero underlines relating to the importance of the photographer’s mind is sacred. Since I agree with McLuhan‘s opinion when he affirms that the medium is the message, the photographic language with which we are willing to communicate must be chosen with the due awareness of the medium through which it will be expressed and vice versa. Since it appears almost instinctive for human beings to search for languages which allow the maximum communication efficiency with the least expenditure of energy, the development of digital technology seems natural. This does not preclude the possibility of expressing one’s self through previous languages, if not the availability of mediums considered progressively obsolete, onerous and therefore, according to the current trends, anti-economical. I’m sure that film photography will hold a niche of die hard fans (among which myself) and therefore such medium will be kept in production for many years ahead in the most appropriate varieties according to the market requests at a more expensive price, but never prohibitive. Digital technology is just at its beginning; I’m sure that many users, either professionals or amateurs, will be able to greatly benefit from it creating images not less significant than the ones taken in the past. What remains fundamental is a good education towards the use of languages, not only nonverbal ones, and a solid overall knowledge.