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Old 01-21-2012, 10:49 PM
wlodekmj wlodekmj is offline
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Default My Kodachrome projects

On his "Kodachrome at 75 years" page, Dan asked us to join with him in the Kodachrome Project to "...help me in creating a wonderful and lasting body of photography that speaks not only of the Kodachrome era, but what we can do to bridge it with future ones..."

So I hope it is ok to write here about bridging from Kodachrome to future work.

I live and work in London, England, so my every trip to the West Coast of the US is a chance to take some special photographs, different from home territory. Thus ever since 1978 I have been building up a collection of photographs of the US West Coast - on Kodachrome of course - and that has for long been my primary Kodachrome project.

When it became clear that Kodachrome would not be available for much longer, and especially after I was lucky enough to discover The Kodachrome Project, I therefore began to look for a different slide film to use to continue photographing the West Coast, and this became my second Kodachrome Project.

As many people have said here, no film replaces Kodachrome. All I wanted to find is a film I can use so that photographs taken on it can be added to my collection of West Coast Kodachrome shots, without looking out of place.

I spent 2010 shooting various E6 films alongside Kodachrome, mostly 64, but also 25, 40 and 200, using up to 10 Olympus OM cameras in parallel, with the same lenses and the same settings. Then I spent 2011 shooting the same films again, but now without Kodachrome, to see how I felt about them.

As a result, I have a file with 86 rolls of processed E6 films, and 30 Kodachrome rolls to compare. The project is almost completed, but there are 20 more rolls to finish and to process.

Once they are ready, I hope to post a summary of my experiences here, but for now here is my result.

Of all the films I tried - many now also discontinued - it was Ektachrome 100G that produced the slides I felt I would be most happy to add to my West Coast Kodachrome Project collection. The results are not the same, shadows in particular are different, but the E100G slides look sufficiently close that they could be considered to be like Kodachrome 64 shots of the same scene, just taken under different lighting conditions.

This was no great surprise, several people have made the comparison on this Forum, for example sdkodachrome here. Nevertheless, I was happy to confirm this for myself. There is no replacement for Kodachrome, but at least I can use E100G to continue my original project. I was in San Diego in September and the few E100G shots I managed to take then do indeed fit in with my older photographs.

P.S. Despite, or maybe even thanks to, the latest Chapter 11 news from Kodak, I guess that E100G will be available for a considerable time yet. I wonder why there have been no posts about this sad state of affairs on the Forum so far. Are we all being sensible and not making a fuss? Or do we not care any more?
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Old 01-21-2012, 11:56 PM
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KR4myF2AS KR4myF2AS is offline
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I look forward to seeing your work when your efforts are complete. Like you, I, too, have settled on E100G as my transparency film of choice for about 80 per cent of my color shooting (35mm and 2 1/4). The balance, at least for my medium format work, is, perhaps not surprisingly, another Kodak product, E100VS. Being the paranoid type, I set in a large store of both emulsions (in both 35mm and 2 1/4 formats), when Kodak's troubles came to the fore several months back. Given that I will be spending the month of August in Louisiana and Mississippi, I wanted to be absolutely certain that there would be no danger in running out of color materials... hence about 100 rolls sitting in my freezer.

Insofar as the lack of postings on this site regarding Kodak's difficulties I can only suggest that while most here are well aware of the circumstances at hand, most have, quite sensibly, chosen to take a wait and see attitude; Chapter 11 proceedings, after all, could go on for up to two years. For now, all one can do is "business as usual" (i.e. continuing to shoot film) or, less constructively, bemoan the fate of the once-Great Yellow Father, and engage in an unending and, I would suggest, ultimately pointless exercise in speculation. For my part, I concur with our man Dan Bayer: Just get out and shoot, and do your shooting on whichever Kodak film (or films) suits your needs and catches your fancy! Leave the Cassandras (on APUG) to chatter away, bitch and moan, speculate to their heart's content and continue to offer their diagnoses and offer their unsolicited "expertise"! For my part, my cameras are loaded and at the ready; the universe will unfold as it should...

Last edited by KR4myF2AS; 01-21-2012 at 11:59 PM.
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Old 01-22-2012, 01:01 PM
mopar_guy mopar_guy is offline
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I think that 99% of the postings on most forum boards in regards to the current state of analog photography is simply useless hand-wringing. I am very happy that I shot up as much Kodachrome in the last two years of processing. For the last year, I have been digging into my stash of frozen Ektachrome Professional (EPR) and trying a few other films. I had really done very little photography for several years prior to the fall of 2010. Kodachrome and my OM-4T bodies and lenses gave me a new lease on life.

Dave
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Old 01-24-2012, 11:04 AM
RichardE RichardE is offline
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Three excellent posts above ^^^^.

I did more picture-taking in the last 18-months of Kodachrome than for quite some years! It encouraged me to make an effort to get out-and-about, and I now have several 1000 slides which will give me enormous pleasure in viewing, sorting, and printing the best into a "Last Year of Kodachrome" album! (Which will probably keep me quiet for a few years!)

I've not felt very enthusiastic about slide work without Kodachrome, but getting back into analog has started me re-exploring B&W and C-41 and into home processing again. And, now that my wife can no longer buy film for her APS camera, I've been asked if I can sort out one of my 35mm ones for her to use.....

And I think we are all more sensible about doom and gloom and speculation than on "another forum". No one knows what will happen with Kodak and their films (the company and the administrators probably don't know for sure yet). Best idea is to go out and enjoy photography for now....and don't check on the Kodak position for at least 12 months, then we'll know the answers!
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Old 01-25-2012, 08:52 AM
sdkodachrome sdkodachrome is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KR4myF2AS View Post
Like you, I, too, have settled on E100G as my transparency film of choice for about 80 per cent of my color shooting (35mm and 2 1/4). The balance, at least for my medium format work, is, perhaps not surprisingly, another Kodak product, E100VS.
Have you ever photographed the same subject with both E100G and E100VS for comparison? Or did you just decide to use E100VS for certain things?

I have not been able to find a good comparison of E100G to E100VS out there on the web so far. (I understand conceptually more or less what the difference is, but there's a difference between conceptually and experientially.)
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Old 01-25-2012, 01:12 PM
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KR4myF2AS KR4myF2AS is offline
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SDK:

To date I have never done a side-by-side comparison: I have used E100G for any shooting where humans are involved or when I want a "natural" rendering of my subject; E100VS, on the other hand, has generally been my go-to film when I am looking for some "hyper-color" in my images (i.e. early and late day landscape shooting, and occasional architectural work in 2 1/4).

However...now you have piqued my curiosity. Weather permitting (no avalanches on the Coquihalla), I am on holidays the week of 20 February and will travel to Calgary via Jasper and Banff National Parks. Just to satisfy my curiosity, I will load up a bunch of the A12s with E100G and E100VS and shoot simultaneously. For edification, I will post here about 10 days later.
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Old 01-26-2012, 09:57 AM
sdkodachrome sdkodachrome is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KR4myF2AS View Post
However...now you have piqued my curiosity. Weather permitting (no avalanches on the Coquihalla), I am on holidays the week of 20 February and will travel to Calgary via Jasper and Banff National Parks. Just to satisfy my curiosity, I will load up a bunch of the A12s with E100G and E100VS and shoot simultaneously. For edification, I will post here about 10 days later.
Cool, thanks. (I don't have multiple camera bodies, so I had to do the K64-vs-E100G the "hard" way, unloading one roll of film after I shot it partially, loading in the other roll of film, and repeating for several scenes. And, that, of course, only worked when the light stayed consistent for minutes.)

Anyway, I suggest that at least on one or two shots you bracket both films, in case it turns out that are interesting revelations about how one film handles under/over exposure compared to the other. That'll also eliminate variables in case one camera body exposes slightly differently than another (or have you already "calibrated" them against each other?).
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Old 01-26-2012, 12:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sdkodachrome View Post
Cool, thanks. (I don't have multiple camera bodies, so I had to do the K64-vs-E100G the "hard" way, unloading one roll of film after I shot it partially, loading in the other roll of film, and repeating for several scenes. And, that, of course, only worked when the light stayed consistent for minutes.)

Anyway, I suggest that at least on one or two shots you bracket both films, in case it turns out that are interesting revelations about how one film handles under/over exposure compared to the other. That'll also eliminate variables in case one camera body exposes slightly differently than another (or have you already "calibrated" them against each other?).
Bracketing is standard procedure for me, and has been from day one. It has, one more than a few occasions, turned up some interesting results! Oddly enough, it is still something I do when shooting with d*****l! (+/- 2/3, regardless of the subject matter.)

As far as calibration goes, using the Hasselblads, I just switch out the A12 backs when shooting different emulsions; so any variations that would/could be camera-caused are eliminated (this also helps me isolate camera troubles if and when they do occur).

Last edited by KR4myF2AS; 04-24-2012 at 11:58 PM.
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Old 05-07-2012, 01:17 PM
Chris Sweetman Chris Sweetman is offline
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Well things have certainly changed in the last few months since the OPing.

Kodak have now stopped producing E6 films but say they are going to continue with colour negative and B&W films. Hmmmm I thought Kodak said the same thing about reversal film not that very long ago!

The main problem with E6 emulsions is going to be processing. I feel the cost is going to go though the roof before too long. Plus as I have stated months ago the number of firms offering E6 processing is diminishing on an almost daily basis.

OK we still have Fuji making slide film but didn't they stop Sensia production last year. And Fuji made similar claims about being committed to film just before they did this!

If you want to use film use it now! Don't waste time comparing X to Y because when you have made your selection one of them would have been binned.

Chris
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Old 05-08-2012, 12:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Sweetman View Post
Well things have certainly changed in the last few months since the OPing.

Kodak have now stopped producing E6 films but say they are going to continue with colour negative and B&W films. Hmmmm I thought Kodak said the same thing about reversal film not that very long ago!

The main problem with E6 emulsions is going to be processing. I feel the cost is going to go though the roof before too long. Plus as I have stated months ago the number of firms offering E6 processing is diminishing on an almost daily basis.

OK we still have Fuji making slide film but didn't they stop Sensia production last year. And Fuji made similar claims about being committed to film just before they did this!

If you want to use film use it now! Don't waste time comparing X to Y because when you have made your selection one of them would have been binned.

Chris
I am going to sneak in two last orders of E100G in 35mm before the end of the month and then call it a day. All told, that should put my E6 stash at around 450 rolls (35mm and 120). Given the constant stream of bad news on the analog(ue) front (at least as far as transparency materials are concerned), time has become, as you suggest Chris, of the essence. Rather than do the "side-to-sides" I had intended, I will most likely continue my habit of "going with the gut," and shoot with the emulsion suggested by the subject matter at hand or by the manner in which I choose to render it. With the clock ticking, time has become a luxury; my real concern now is EK's commitment to providing the E6 chemistry. We are probably okay for the present, pending developments in the movie industry. Long term, however, is another matter.

Once my supply of Kodak E6 is done, I am, barring the emergence of new players in the market or business reconsiderations (?) by EK, probably finished working with colo(u)r analog(ue) materials. While I am prepared to give Fuji's products a shot, and possibly look at the offerings of some of the smaller players when my Kodak stock is exhausted (Velvia could conceivably substitute for the E100VS I use in the Blads; but finding a replacement for E100G is the sticking point), I am not terribly optimistic. I have always preferred working with transparency materials and have no desire to begin shooting colo(u)r negative materials. By all accounts the quality of local C41 processing is uneven at best, and I have no desire to home process the stuff myself. Who knows, I may opt to choke on my words, renege on the promise to myself, and begin using d*****l for my color work! (Oh, the humanity!).
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