Yes, Ansel Adams would be shooting digital

Lately there’s has been some healthy debate about whether Ansel Adams would be shooting film or digital were he still alive today. The discussion helps us think about how creative techniques of the past can be applied with new technology. Though the discussion is fruitful, the point is not really at issue. In an interview in the early 1980s, Ansel Adams said this:

As the world’s silver resources are depleted, these new technologies are particularly important.  The time will come when you will be able to make the entire photograph electronically, with the extremely high resolution and the enormous control you can get from electronics, the results will be fantastic. I wish I were young again.

I came across this quotation as part of the caption to a photograph in the Ansel Adams Gallery in San Francisco. Adams’ attitude should not surprise us. I wish Adams were young again, too.


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