You tell me… (contest below)

I often get asked, “What is the difference between film and digital.”

So I have a series of descriptive words that I use to try and convey why I love film so much.

But it is hard… so I need help.

I’d love for you tell me what you think the difference is.

So… this is film.

And… this (click here) is digital.

Now you tell me what you think, by Friday the 18th, and I will pick one person to win a surprise film print.

About the author paige green

Paige Green is a documentary and portrait photographer, whose storytelling approach to photography frequently addresses issues involving agriculture, land use, and food. Her work is featured in nine books and has been published in Glamour, National Geographic Traveler, New York Times Magazine, Conde Nast Traveler, GQ, Country Living, House Beautiful, and Culture. Paige lives in Petaluma, CA with a house full of boys.

All posts by paige green →


  1. Film looks real. I feel in the picture looking. Digital I feel looking at the picture. As I look back at my 35mm days. The digital, I look immediately.. did I get what I wanted? And with film… Your into what your photographing totally… connecting and something instinctive connects and you hit the button at the right moment. That is why I love looking at your photographs. I enjoy being in a magical moment with you. You are special 🙂


  2. I do know this….photos taken with a digital camera are much more economical. Someone like me, a “non-pro”, could literally burn through an entire roll of film and maybe get one good photo!…I remember those days of picking up developed photos and having to throw away half of them! Erasable memory works great for me. I admire film photography, like yours….YOU are an artist Paige!!!!…..all I do is point~click & if need to, erase!



  3. film, for me, evokes old, analogue, slowness, reality, thought, patience. digital is crisp, clear, factual, detailed, and manipulable.


  4. tangible feeling, shimmery light, depth of tone, still yet alive.

    xoxo, e


  5. Paige,
    i love this mother daughter series. The film is even more moving than the digital series from last week. I teared up looking at them and I don’t even know these people! Again, a kudos on your talent to translate.
    p.s. I am not commenting here to win a print, just love love love these recent photos of yours and wanted to let you know


  6. Film is the precipice and every time you press, you have to stand on the edge and consciously decide to jump. Will you land squarely on your feet? Click. Or will you wobble? In the monumental moment of life unfolding before you- will you be able to capture the spirit? It is a chance and risk to pit your wits and to rely on the intimacy and depth of knowledge that you share with your camera. Click. It is chemistry in your hands- reactions of the light you let in mixed onto plastic-coated, emulsion and salts, gelatins and crystals. All delicately taking place inside a box of mechanisms that you drag onto the next possibility. Click.

    Digital is freewheeling and spraying life on a tiny TV. One and zeros pressed into and out of shape from pointing and framing. Inside your head is a realm of infinite canvases. Inside the box is a sliver of plastic that ejects to become rolls and rolls of albums. Or Hollywood movies.

    Film or digital- all beauty lies still in the hands and eye of the beholder.


  7. Film is to photography as vinyl is to music. It captures the subtler intonations that digital media misses. Don’t get me wrong though, digital is amazing too. We as artist are fortunate to have so many tools at our disposal.

    Pick me 🙂


  8. Seems the film is black and white and the digital is color. Did I win?


  9. the difference is the moment of time 🙂

    when you take pics with digital,it’s take a few second to see
    and retake it again and again.
    but film give you only 36 best, need you to slowly put your film in-out,
    think carefully with every time you press
    and the best moment,when you sit down at the film store and wait 🙂

    oh i almost forgot the sound of mechanical shutter it’s feel great! 😀


  10. Raw (that was for Arann, but I do really think it’s descriptive of film:)! Your work is beautiful in every medium you choose. Thanks for sharing this gift with the world!! xoxo.


  11. Sarah… the random number picker says you win! Thank you everyone for your awesome answers. I loved reading all the thoughtful responses and I will definitely send future film vs digital inquirers here when they want to know what the differences are.


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