Monday, June 22, 2009

I Never Liked Kodachrome Until............

I normally don't post twice in a day (I'd run out of ideas too fast). But the end of Kodachrome deserves to be noted here.

Kodachrome for me is soooo 60's. It evokes memories of my childhood cross country family vacations, dutifully recorded by my mom in Kodachrome slides. I have most of my mother's slides, but sorting through them on such short notice to find an adequate representative (mom + instamatic cameras = not the greatest photography), but in the coming weeks I'll try to find some hidden gem in all those memories.

So for now let's remember the famous "Afghan Girl", immortalized by Steve McCurry with Kodachrome film. Although, even he acknowledges that in his search for the grown-up Sharbat Gula, he re-created the image using Kodak E100VS.

But I never liked Kodachrome until I saw my father-in-law's slides of post war Japan (early 1950's), all in Kodachrome. Absolutely beautiful! Kodachrome was always favored by professionals, but had such a complex processing method (K-14) that it could only be done by Kodak. Thus the Ektachrome family of films (E-6 processing), which could be processed by local photo labs, gradually became the transparency film standard. I will even be trying E-6 processing myself later this summer. Let's be honest, the films that survive will be the ones that we can process ourselves (or are cheap enough for others to continue to do). I love Daguerrotypes too, but the processing is so toxic that I can do without trying it.

No comments:

Post a Comment