It hasn’t been a great to be a film photographer. During the course of the year we’ve lost an impressive list of favoured friends. Just off the top of my head: Neopan 400 (120), Astia, Neopan 1600, T-64, 160s, 160c, 800z, FP-100B, FP-400B, EPP-100, Kodachrome (yawn), Portra 400NC & VC (replaced by new Portra 400?) … there are also a bunch of other Kodak slide films that are no longer around.
I’m not convinced that colour film photography has much of a future. While it’s certainly true that it produces a more distinct feel than the clinical precision of digital, the trend is obvious — feeling is something that process in afterwards with photoshop, and not something that you leave up to the vagaries of compounds suspended in a cellulose like material.
Apart from the loss of Neopan 400 (120), which no doubt can be replaced by learning to use one of the Ilford films / chemical combinations, the saddest part is the discontinuation of all the b&w Fujiroid instant film. To be honest i never shot it very much, but it was lovely to have around because of the outlet it provided for digital like instant results. There is also some thing quite special about being able to spontaneously take and give away physical pictures. My feeling is that the Impossible project is going to stumble around pointlessly for a little longer, and then live up to it’s name. It seems very much the end of the road for instant film.
Colour film will only be dead to me when Velvia 50 is discontinued. Even then, colour isn’t central to my photography experience, and it’d take quite some effort for me to get motivated to try out other films. Much more likely that i’d simply join my friends who are hoping that PhaseOne back become an affordable secondhand commodity!
Below the fold are a couple of versions of the Leather Nun (classic?) Slow Death.
First one to comment without including the word ‘cheeky’ is the winner.