The last time I spoke with my father we talked a bit about the current state of photography and art.
My father is a traditionalist. He learned the basics of photography from his father. He still uses film for his more serious work and enjoyed tinkering with different ideas and styles as the mood hits him.
I sent along a DVD of my LensWork published work and interview. My father must've given it a listen and it might have left him somewhat bewildered.
In less than two years I have transitioned from large and medium format film systems and silver and palladium printing methods. Nowadays I use the latest generation digital tools and techniques. I have worked hard to leverage my knowledge of computer science to learn as much as I can about digital tools and techniques for image making. Until I spoke with my father I had no idea just how far and fast the movement has been.
I had to laugh when he started talking about Richard Feinman. My father heard a story about Richard and his father. It went something like this: In the early days, Richard and his dad would talk about science and physics. Richard obviously enjoyed the subject. After years of research, Richard tried to talk with his dad about his latest findings and his dad had to tell him he couldn't understand a word he'd said.
Now I'm no Richard Feinman, so I had to laugh when my father shared this story with me and then told me he'd not understood a word I'd said in the interview. After I stopped laughing at the ludicrous comparison I had to think a moment to realize what my father was saying. It wasn't that I was some genius. I'm not. But rather that I have applied myself to a new set of tools and techniques that my father has little to no knowledge of, let alone how to manipulate and use them.
Is this an example of the growing gulf between the new and old ways of image making?