Well anyone who has read this Blog or who knows me in person…knows I have a passion for several things. History, Military Reenacting, and Film Photography.
So don’t mind me…I just had to spread the word that film is alive and is kicking ass. That’s right folks, film is far from dead, the grave is no longer in sight of this dearly loved medium. Because there just isn’t anything like film. Don’t worry, I’m not knocking digital, and it does have it’s place in my workflow, it’s just I prefer to work with film. So where did it all start again? Right, the death of Polaroid. Funny how at the end there’s an odd beginning. The loss of Polaroid but a hole into the heart of photographers everywhere, they had been dying a slow death. Photographer friend Polly Chandler when out and maxed out a credit card on the lovely Type 55 instant 4×5 material when she found out it was being discontinued. Into this stepped three brave entrepreneurs, and they managed to snag the last operational Polaroid factory and named themselves “The Impossible Project” because their task was…nothing short of impossible. But they managed to, from scratch, recreate instant film for the SX-70, 600, and Spectra Cameras. Sure it was a long rough road, but they made it come back, and continue to work on improving.
But they showed one thing, film is alive and people still yearn for project. So into this hole stepped other people who saw a need and reached out and started making new project. New55 is working on getting their replacement for Polaroid Type 55 into the market again after launching a successful kickstarter campaign. Impossible Project continues to improve their colour and B&W formulas and products. But now what? Where do we go from here? Today there are only three operational fully self-contained film production lines in the world. Fuji, Kodak, Agfa, but there was a fourth, Ferrania. And they’re working on getting that line operational again, because someone in the Italian Government had the foresight to preserve the plant and equipment and now a group of men, are working on getting it up and running. Their goal to produce three new slide films, yes, the idea of getting new slide film in both 120, 35mm along with Super8 and 16mm for motion picture is exciting!
Add to this Cinestill, who produces still camera ready, c-41 process motion picture film is working on getting their wonderful stock into 120 format as well? Still think film is dead? Keep reading!
How about a new, affordable Large format field camera? I’m game! As much as I like to shoot my Crown Graphic press camera, having another option available to me is also a fantastic idea, Intrepid Camera Co. is working on their prototype and the images they’re producing is fantastic, plus the camera looks pretty sexy as well!
So how can YOU help? That’s the easy part! Support film! Go out and buy fresh product from Kodak, Ilford, Fuji, Foma, Lomography, Impossible Project, Adox…but don’t horde, buy what you need, shoot it, and get more. Support companies like Cinestill, Intrepid, and Ferrania, let’s show them some film love. And most importantly promote them through whatever social media you have, twitter, tumblr, facebook, ello….anything really.
And yes, I’ve backed both of these, as well as Bill Schwab’s Kickstarter for his Photographic Workshop up in Emmet County which was successfully funded as well as Lomography’s latest for the Lomo’Instant (also wildly successful).
Companies that Support Film
The Film Photography Project: http://filmphotographyproject.com/
The Impossible Project: https://www.the-impossible-project.com/
Freestyle Photographic: http://www.freestylephoto.biz/
Burlington Camera: http://burlingtoncamera.com/
The Darkroom: https://thedarkroom.com/
Borealis Labs: http://www2.borealislab.qc.ca/
Kodak Alaris: http://www.kodakalaris.com/ek/US/en/Kodak_Alaris.htm
Intrepid Camera Co: http://www.theintrepidcamera.co.uk/
FILM Ferrania: http://www.filmferrania.it/
Yes, film is still out there, and is kicking back.
Not Dead. Nowhere Close to Dead.