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    Why Throw the Negs Out with the Bathwater? A Study of Students’ Attitudes to Digital and Film Photographic Media

    Macdonald, Iain (2012) Why Throw the Negs Out with the Bathwater? A Study of Students’ Attitudes to Digital and Film Photographic Media. International Journal of Art and Design Education, 31 (2). pp. 191-211. ISSN 1476-8062

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    As today’s digital applications hold our gaze and become increasingly ubiquitous, it is easy to dismiss the previous technologies and processes that provided yesterday’s creative opportunities. Photography has been revolutionised by digital capture and transmission in the past decade. It could be argued that there is a digital orthodoxy in education, which has democratized and engaged increasing numbers of students, and has had a particular influence in A Level Photography. Over the past decade many traditional darkrooms have been replaced by computer suites. My concern is that if secondary schools and colleges with the facilities to teach film are forced to convert to a singular digital mode, we may be throwing the negs out with the bathwater. This study uses qualitative and quantitative research that I have undertaken at a Further Education college in England. It explores students’ attitudes to learning Photography with an artistic curiosity, which includes experiential learners, and those that eschew the digital age who are content with the organic variety of analogue learning that film offers. They make their own case for maintaining the opportunity to learn through hybrid activity that embraces both media, for a multiplicity of learning opportunities and media that are not limited by any orthodoxy, digital or otherwise.

    Item Type: Article
    Keywords: photography; orthodoxy; digital; analogue; pedagogy;
    Academic Unit: Faculty of Social Sciences > Design Innovation
    Item ID: 12774
    Identification Number:
    Depositing User: Iain Macdonald
    Date Deposited: 20 Apr 2020 10:14
    Journal or Publication Title: International Journal of Art and Design Education
    Publisher: Wiley
    Refereed: Yes
    Use Licence: This item is available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike Licence (CC BY-NC-SA). Details of this licence are available here

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