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Friday, 06 January 2017


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The hipster crowd will finally see what actual color transparency film looks like. Nowhere close to the fake colors from digital simulations. The pukey cyan casts and off contrast never agreed with my color transparency experiences of a few decades.

Keeping my fingers crossed Kodak expands the offering to 120 size, and sheet film if we're really fortunate.

My slides from the 1960's, mainly of steam locos in a grey and murky UK, now look rather sorry for themselves. Colours muted and that cold bluish cast, especially in the "High Speed Ektachrome" (160ASA!) don't compare well with what photography has become imho.
I may well be tempted to try a roll or two, though, out of curiosity if nothing else.

MAGIC...I remember about 45 years ago when i was getting into photographer. I built a little darkroom, a used enlarger and was enjoying my new hobby. Somehow I noticed a large yellow box in the store and it was A kit for Ektachrome developing the slide film. After about 100 rolls of B&W negatives I opened up the black plastic container with the film developer cannister and unwound the stainless spiral spool and voila' a color positive roll of film. Even though I spent about an hour to develop it I never was so surprised that it actually was color and the positive image. I even bought little cardboard frames to iron them together and view them from the slide projector....now i guess they would need to be scanned ?

Ever since Kodachrome went away, Fuji's Velvia, aka "velvetta" was the best equivalent. I never was enamored of Ektachrome - I am a fan of "punchy" photographs.

The only reason I ever shot Ektachrome was for the speed bump over the sainted Kodachrome. I would trade the entire E-6 mob to have Kodachrome back again. Oh Kodak, where are your priorities? Yah, I know, the processing . . . but still?

Meh. Ektachrome was a terrible film with poor longevity. Fuji won over slide shooters for good reasons, and not all Fuji films are over saturated, Provia or Astia were quite subtle.

When I was in school, I shot a lot of 16mm Ektachrome. Until Kodak released 7247 (16mm color negative, tungsten EI 100) in the late 1970s, you were stuck with Ektachrome ECO 7252 (reversal tungsten, EI 25) if you wanted to make good color release prints. So I've shot a lot of reversal in S8, 16mm as well as 35mm stills over the last fifty years.

Adding Ektachrome 100 to AgfaPhoto CT Precisa 100 and the various Fujichromes will give us a variety of looks to work with. Woo-Hoo!

Amen to that. Being a film shooter - I'm still trying to determine what the most adequate colour negative film is - I've never been tempted into reversal film. Mostly because I was aware of the limited exposure range you've mentioned, but also for monetary reasons.
So, despite being a huge film enthusiast, this news leaves me somewhat cold. The only good thing about this relaunch serves is that it's further proof of the resurgence of film. Which may come as a surprise for most, but not for others who have never stopped believing.
And don't get me started on the analogies* between this and the rebirth of vinyl.

*See what I did?

I'd prefer Kodachrome. I already have the shirt: http://www.dwaynesphoto.com/

You're developing into a real comedian, Mike !

Ektachrome never did much for me. I liked Kodachrome (never shot a lot of it) and the Fuji films (more Provia than Velvia).

I really did like ektachrome 64 Tungsten. I used it exclusively for large format product photography. No reciprocity failure, you could do 10 minute exposures, and it did not have the cold blue cast. Note I say did. Hope to never touch another piece of film again.

I never liked any of the Kodak E6 films. As you mentioned the DR was terrible and personally I hated the colour palette. Now if they brought back VPS ......

We shot a lot of EPN/EPY in the photo studio (museum) I work for. Used to buy 4x5 by the case on a gov't contract at 80% off & ran our E6 as well. I honestly don't understand bringing it back though. EPN/EPY was an extremely neutral film and one of the only color films actually capable of rendering blue & green properly, but it wasn't popular beyond the repro/catalog studio crowd. The other ektachromes were sorta middle of the road films. They all had pretty iffy longevity in terms of dark storage and even worse projected. Kodachrome was the king for dark storage. The biggest reason why we had to stop shooting film in the first place was because Kodak quit making EPN, then Polaroid went under and finally Wing Lynch--our machine--went out of business. Then Kodak scaled back on E6 kits-which were ideal sized for WL machines. Along the way almost all the commercial labs went out of business as well, leaving only a handful--like Praus--that still offer decent E6. I just don't see who the market is at this point. I wish them good luck, but would have rather seen product news about bring back TMZ or b/w paper production.

By golly time to dust off the Carousel. That is the Kodak Carousel slide projector for those who never shot transparency film, or any film for that matter.

But no, I wont bother. I look at my Ektachrome slides shot years ago most have faded to a murky mush of color. They can be color corrected as I have done in scanning and correcting them, a time consuming process for sure. Looking at my Kodachrome slides shot years ago they are still looking good. Like the day I got them back from the lab.

It is good Ektachrome will be back.I'm sure folks who try it will have fun. I just won't be taking part in the celebration.

This is great news because more choice is usually better. I was not too fond of Ektachrome and preferred FujiFilm's Astia as an E-6 film once Kodachrome was discontinued. Still, I hope this new Ektachrome is a success. There are thousands or millions of used slide projectors out there, so someone who wants to experiment with slide film can get started with a low investment. The film-haters on Dpreview are already gnashing their teeth and telling the world about how superior their super XYZ digital cameras are. Sigh....

I hope the reformulated Ektachrome looks like EPN - the coldest, most muted species of the Ektachrome genus. Scientists loved EPN for its accuracy; if you wanted to know what a rare flower species actually looked like, you could trust EPN to show you. If you wanted a Peter-Max-style acid-trip experience of the flower, there was always Velvia. Now that we have Photoshop and lightroom, there's really no reason for a FILM STOCK to look like Velvia; you can just shoot the real colors, scan, go into Photoshop, and turn the thing up to 11 - or not, if you choose.

But on the broader point - the resurgence of transparency film - I'm very happy about that. The great thing about transparency film, and especially about EPN, is that you can trust your colors. You don't need to worry about your camera's color settings, or your vendor's weird love of otherworldly bright reds or greens. You don't need to worry that your monitor has been calibrated by a hipster graphic designer. And, unlike with print film, you don't need to worry that the one-eyed colorblind guy at the photo lab has screwed up the colors in processing. As long as you get the time, temperature, and concentration right in the E6 bath, what you shoot is what you get.

Long live Ektachrome!

Back in the dinosaur era, many if not most nature/landscape photographers shot slide film because the processed result was first generation output and gave a reasonably predictable image. If you shot a landscape in beautiful late-day warm light on print film, the auto-processing algorithms likely as not gave you a stack of 4x6" prints 'corrected' back to dull neutrality. Slides instead gave you (more or less) what you saw, within the limits of the emulsion.
Most folks circa 1980 shot Kodachrome 64 because it gave a very nice rendition of warm colors though greens were a little drab. Ektachrome at the time was indeed a lot colder in its rendition. Then along came Fujichrome with much punchier colors and then Fuji's hypersaturated Velvia 50 and shazaam, it was all over for K64. The resulting super-saturated, high drama landscape æsthetic remains king to this day, for good or ill; just look at Flickr.
Late in the film era Kodak's E100 was a lovely film, more neutral and higher in saturation than the earlier versions, fairly similar to Fuji's very nice Provia. Both were a lot easier to scan than the super-high contrast Velvia. I would guess this is what the new film will be like. But I'm not enough of a masochist to tackle lots of slide scanning again to make good prints. Digital is just too good.

My absolute favorite emulsion was E100VS (which this is not. Probably. Maybe. Also I should mention that I'm proud to be 100% amateur).

I was absolutely overjoyed when I first read the press release from Alaris, but I immediately donned my Skeptic's Cap and will continue to hunker in my corner with it firmly pulled around my ears until I try this film for myself. In the meantime, I need to find a damned lab that can process E6 satisfactorily, as my preferred facility closed early last year (another option might be to learn to process E6 at home).

What I'm (poorly) trying to articulate is that die-hard E6 lovers still exist!

Now when are they going to bring back infrared ektachrome, that's what I want to know!

The last two ektachromes I used - 100G and 100GW (slightly warmer) - were both excellent. No magenta sky fringes, neutral, rich accurate colors. I trialed them against Fuji's offerings and much preferred the E100.

Pros used color transparency film to enable easy scanning for further processing. Negative film with that pesky orange mask was historically more difficult to deal with.

Finally, my Prado will have a use again! http://www.pradoseum.eu/englisch-version/Prado-500-en.html

[Ah, those Prados were lovely machines. --Mike]

Where did the time go, is it already time for April Fools Jokes? I shot thousands of rolls of Ektachrome during my career and never really loved it and never will. Once again KODAK makes another corporate blunder, really? Why? Now bring back Kodachrome and processing then you will see the people come.

The Darkroom in California is one of the more affordable slide film developers, only charging $3 extra. I used them for the brief period when I experimented with film.


I shot Ektachrome 100 for many years and always liked the look. I might be tempted to shoot a roll or two of the new stuff for old times' sake . . . but wouldn't you know it, my computer doesn't seem to have a port where you can plug in a film canister.


Kinda the opposite of one of these:

Printers learned to handle slide films adequately, but most never got actually good at it. Color negative was a much better medium, but it required expertise all the way through to get good results and most photographers weren't paying any attention after it left their cameras. Plus many publishers weren't familiar with the process.

For today...maybe it's kind of one step from "instant?" You can look at the film as soon as it's out of the tank.

I used to shoot Ektachome Tungsten 160 for the speed and best color outdoors with the orange filter, 85B, I think. Somewhere early on, I read that originals kept better in color reversal film rather than negative, so I shot all that I could afford. But from what I've read, this film is the T-base emulsion, that's different from the old stuff, but better for scanning? I wonder if Kodak Alaris ever did any customer research as to what film to bring back, judging from some of these responses. I'd try some... Dwayne's would develop it, I guess.

As I look at my recent trip's pictures in Mexico, all shot on Portra 160, there is not a single one where I can tell: digital couldn't be better. I like many of them nevertheless.

This exercise of using film was not futile. I guess I had to experiment first hand to remember how restrictive film is. The jury is still out if these limiting factors are good for creativity.

For several decades I shot slide film: 90% Kodachrome 64 and the other 10% was a mix of Ektachome, Velvia, and Provia.

I'm still trying to scan my slides. The idea of shooting more slides that would have to be scanned* is a non-starter for me.

*Unless the developers can also scan as part of the process. That would be fine!

Quite a few places in the UK still doing E6.

Not too excited, myself.
Now if they decided to bring back some of the Ektars...

[Ektar never went away. You can still buy Ektar 100 in 35mm and 120. --Mike]

Still love B&W film, but Ektachrome... I do like the box!

Remember the old days, with "vapourware", marketing? Company-X would hear that Company-Y was about to bring out something useful, and then seek to prevent their own customers from jumping over to Company-Y by letting it be known that their own version of the product would be available one Quarter after that of Company-Y . . . Of course, Company-X would have a very, very delayed launch and benefit hugely from observing the Company-Y launch of the super-product.

Is this what Kodak and Kodak-Alaris are doing to Ferrania, and any 'improved' or re-launched Fuji products?

Over here in Netherlands (and Germany too, perhaps even lots of Europe) it isn't a problem to get E6 developed well, as the large-and-serious labs doing most of the send-out film D&P also have E6 services. A roll of Fujichrome/Precisa is developed here in the Fujicolor laboratory and returned in a week. Let's hope the increase in film brands (if and when it occurs...) maintains the usage of E6 for us all to enjoy.

Someone mentioned CT-Precisa as being an Agfa product? Isn't it made in Japan (by, hmmmmm, a film producer) not Germany.

(Just checked the fridge, I have five rolls of "Kodak EliteChrome EB" in there. Maybe I should use it now, instead of the Precisa?!)

Before we get too excited, a careful reading of the press release and a review of the Kodak and Kodak Alaris web sites shows that the focus is on film stock for movies. The only product that Kodak Alaris will sell is 135 format Ektachrome. Don't make any plans contingent on 120 or sheet film.

Excellent. Now I can finish off that brick of E100 that I have in the freezer.

Need a projector? Bell & Howell, GAF, Leitz, Kodak, 35mm, 6x6 ...all over e-bay at bargain basement prices. I live in SoCal, and have half a dozen labs within driving distance. Your Milage Probably Does Vary.

I'm a photographer, not a lab-rat. HCB didn't do his own lab work, so I see no shame in farming-out E6 processing.

I've been getting-it-right in-camera for over fifty years. It will be a pleasure to get finished Ektachrome slides from the lab 8-) No additional tweaking needed.

I shot a few dozen rolls of Provia over the last year or two – mostly 6x7 (a medium format transparency is a thing of beauty), but some 35mm as well. I mostly shot K64 back in the 60's and the slides are still perfect today. It's hard to get excited about 35mm Ektachrome, but I will probably give it a try anyway. However, if this new Kodak could figure out how to bring back Kodachrome (and associated processing), I would be in the stampede to buy it.

Here's hoping the box is vinyl

I was processing E-6 in a Jobo ATL-1000 up until a few years ago when the chemistry could no longer be shipped. Sold my last 4x5" and then the ATL-1000 (real cheap). I miss shooting chrome but not all the processing hassles of today. I am 100% digital minus a few more boxes of Polaroid 55 P/N stashed in the frig for a few years now (purchased directly from Polaroid-- their last batch). I probably will sell them. Interesting to see where this will go.

Film developing and scanning in SoCal https://www.northcoastphoto.com/film_developing_scans.html E6 process $10.50 add 3339x5035 scanning for $11.95.

Lots of film is still available in SoCal http://www.freestylephoto.biz/category/1-Film

Hmmmm, aren't Zeiss lenses made in Japan 8-)

I simply have no words for recent mini-surge in shooting film. The first time I used actual high resolution digital was the last time I used film (unless forced to for some reason - like 8x10 shots of jewelry...).
Whatever is the point? Film = trash, pollution, chemicals, poor DR, uncertainty, lack of control, locked into WB/ISO/ET ETC for every shot and so on. Plus, the cost!!
I have no clue.
With a good digital camera and Lightroom/Photoshop I can make an image look EXACTLY like the results from ANY film and ANY process. Heck, I can do that with my iPhone and the VSCO app.


Shot a ton of Ektachrome, in 35, 120, and 4x5, for fine art repro. The best things about it at the time were that it was relatively cheap, had quick turnaround at the pro labs in town (in in the morning, out by the afternoon), and was easier to shoot than Kodachrome.

Don't miss it a bit.

I personally prefer the FujiChromes, but will reward Kodak with the purchase of this film. It is better for astrophotography and has less lateral halation than the Fuji films.

I process my own E6 film along with B&W film. My cost is only about double that of B&W processing and it is as simple as dirt. I hang to dry, cut them in strips to feed the scanner and sleave them up in archival sheets. Once bulk scanned, I just sync the folder in Lightroom and carry on as though they were shot in my digital cameras. No mounting and filing of slides, just bulk scan the strips.

This process is the most efficient way of integrating analog cameras in a digital world.


...Since Ilfochrome/Cibachrome chemistry is no longer available—not to mention slide projectors—it's going to be pretty difficult to justify shooting slide film...

I disagree. In my opinion, Ilfochrome's absurdly high contrast and surface gloss are better off gone. And slide projectors are still available brand new


enabling the highest, best use of 35mm transparency images. If Ektachrome succeeds, Kodak might next reintroduce it in 120. That could be displayed using these currently available medium format projectors:


...not all Fuji films are over saturated, Provia or Astia were quite subtle.

Provia's always been magenta. Did Fuji re-start Astia manufacturing? :-) When the latter was discontinued, I switched to E100G. It turned out to be better overall than Astia, which was my favorite transparency film up to that time. The new Ektachrome E100 won't be identical to E100G; we'll have to wait and see how it compares. But anything beats Velveeta. Unless you're shooting for Crayola.

Never mind, can't get half frame slide mounts anymore anyway anyhow.

Gotta think about this -- I've still got an F5, if the batteries still work.
One thing that slide film is good for is hi-res projection, and I do have a couple of slide projectors. Digital is better for overall resolution, for printing, as an example, but digital projectors are nowhere near as good as printed stuff -- digital projectors essentially project a shot of a TV screen, and if you want to look at a detail in a large overall photo, what you get is pixels rather than resolution. So...might look at the F5.

I use the Slideprinter in Denver for my E-6 processing.

My dad shot Ektachrome for years - now we're going through his slides, digitizing them and seeing if any of the red ones can be converted to black and white. Some successes, some are too far gone, some he threw away before the digital age. So go ahead and shoot Ektachrome, but make sure you back up anything that's worth saving for future generations.

What's the point?
With a little creativity and experimentation in Photoshop, or with any one of a number of plug-ins, you can make a digital image look like any film emulsion or process that has ever existed.
I'm old, almost as old as Ol' Mike, and I've shot a ton of film. I never want to go back to that.
What's the point?

Plug for Edgar Praus, the last wet lab (!) in Rochester but serving togs worldwide... Mike you could take him your film, get a nice coffee at Joe Bean down the street and pick it up 45 minutes later ~ just like a NYC pro circa 1997. Live the dream!


As for my experience, EPN was the only daylight film that produced printable colors on an offset press. All of the other over-saturated candy-colored film was job security for prepress departments and MatchPrint proofing ("Wadda mean you can't print that blue!!!???") If you had a catalog or anything that needed to look realistic, you used EPN. Everything else was for tourists. And slide slows (intentional misspelling).

I have no idea what people will do with slides nowadays. They scan worse than negs, you can't make an analog print without jumping through hoops. But maybe loupe and light table sales will rebound?

"The need for post production is one of the things that pains me most about digital. To this day I can't accept that it's just no longer possible to get it right in camera every time."

I am baffled by this comment!

Firstly, film (incl. slide) needs to be chemically developed, which is a form of post-processing.

Secondly, current generation digital cameras have better resolution, better colour accuracy and larger dynamic range than film. Not to mention higher frame rates and larger buffers. Not to mention EVFs, which can display exposure information in real-time and an electronic level gauge etc.

So in practice, digital allows the photographer to get it "more right" in the camera than film cameras ever did. I started photography 30 years ago, with film and slide.

I now shoot raw and 'develop' using DxO. I nearly always make some tweaks in DxO and occasionally export to PS for further tweaks.

I used to do a lot more editing ("post-processing") because the digital editing tools make it possible. But in recent years I've disciplined myself to get it "more right" in the camera.

Note: I'm more of a documentary style photographer. If you are into digital illustration then my comments wont apply to you.

I wonder if Tom could expand on the rationale behind his comment?

While I am glad for those who want it, I still only miss Plus-X; sheet, 120 & 35mm heaven at ISO400 and dunked in Diafine...

If they brought that back, I'd sell my soul for a Leica MP, a mint uncoated Summitar & a freezer full of film for the rest of my life.

When you post about a new digital camera, do you get dozens comments from film-users complaining about the environmental damage of all those electronics? Saying that they don't understand what the point is, as film is vastly superior? Grumpily moaning that they used digital in the past, but hope never to do so again?
Just wondering.

Halfway the Eighties we started to shoot a lot of large format Ektachromes because they worked great in presentations to clients. That impressed them of course, because most had never seen 8 X 10 transparencies. And you could send those straight to the lithographer; a fast and easy process. For the graphic industry large and medium format transparencies were simply the easiest to work with. When you used negatives you had the make contacts and enlarged prints first to be able to judge them.

Ekta had the reputation of being the most natural of all. Once we had a huge assignment with very critical corporate colors, so we tested them with all the emulsions that were available. Agfachrome, that used the same chemical process, appeared to be the most neutral. It was the best with clean whites too.

Privately I traveled at lot and then I always shot on Kodachrome 25 or 64. Incredible detail, even when they where projected at the size of two by three meters. They still look good. Better than the few Ektachromes I have. Also a serious problem with Ektachromes is that they easily get moldy when you don’t store them in a dry place. Fortunately fungi don’t like Kodachrome. For professional use Kodachrome was a pain, because it took at least a week before they came back from the lab.

Some of my friends, professional photographers, sell their works through galleries. They still prefer large format film. Kodak Portra as far as I know. As the name suggests: very adequate for portraits. Within a margin, all colors can be a bit beside the truth. Except for skin tones.

Ektachrome was muted? Had a cold blue cast? Hell's teeth, I would hate to see your light! Not in the hundreds (thousands?) of 120 rolls I shot here in paradise with the Mamiya C3 & C330, and Rollei. I thought Ekta was known for its strong colors compared with muted Kodachrome (which I liked very much too when I moved to 35mm). Never saw anything I liked about Fujifilm. As for lack of DR -- Mike, you're having a lend of me, surely! Reversal film always had heaps of DR -- much more than any print film and any print (which is why NatGeo photogs shot in reversal)!

I have a couple of scanned color shots from back in the day; I wish I could upload them so you could see them.

I have to admit though, visiting England in 1975, Agfachrome gave superior color rendering in that gray hole (even though 1975 was a super hot summer and two horses fainted in the Trooping of the Colors rehearsal -- but not in the actual event because it rained).

BUT ALL THAT SAID I have absolutely no wish to ever shoot a single frame of color or any other film again -- the beautiful rendering of my Panasonic GX7 and G6 cameras and before them the Olympus E-PL3, the instant feedback, the autofocus, the etc., etc. remind me daily of the how fortunate I am to have survived to be a photographer in the digital age.

Cheers, Geoff

No one will use it for slides, it will all be scanned.

I mainly shot Kodachrome and a fair amount of Agfachrome (both 50 and later the E6-based 64 - the latter being gorgeous,) but admit that later Ektachromes could be really, really nice. 4x5 Ektachrome could be stunning.

I for one welcome this move by Alaris. It's not Kodachrome, but that would be asking too much. I'm lucky to live 10 minutes or so from a great E6 lab, one where you can walk in and talk with the owner and know you're in good hands. Hint: Prauss Productions does a lot of mail order business with pros from far and away.

It always amazes me when folks who have no problem buying everything from sheets to shorts on Amazon (using the TOP link, of course!) and ordering gear from B&H (link again...) say "good luck getting it processed." Google is your friend.

I sincerely hope this goes well because if it does, then the chances of Ektachrome 120 are improved. My brain had settled on keeping only b&w in the Rolleiflex Automat, but I'm not sure I could resist feeding it Ektachrome 120. Or maybe I would get a Mamiya 7 or a Fuji 690 to dedicate to Ektachrome.

Then, of course, if Fuji would re-launch Astia & Reala ... please.

And ... I agree with Geoff. Transparencies often appear to have limited dynamic range. When I scanned a K64 slide that is one of my better photos, I was stunned to see how much detail in both shadows and highlights suddenly appeared. And that was with a "lowly" Canoscan 2700 - a high scanner would probably blow me away.


This last permutation of Ektachrome, was literally the best; they finally got it 'right' after walking in the wilderness in the 70's and 80's with EPN (made to scan, meaning flat and lifeless) and Lumeiere. When they finally got the the G series, I shot tons of it, in 4X5, 8X10, and 120. The retail studio I managed shot tons of it too. lots of times 350-400 rolls a week of 35mm on assignment, cases of 4X5 per month.

If you think it's too cold, we always shot with an 81 or 81A filter on, looked just great, beautiful skin tones.

The problem with Fuji is, they pulled the plug on their "good" E-6 film (might have been called RDP), and came out with Provia, which was as blue as Ektachrome, to compete with Ektachrome, to the uproar of millions. I remember calling and bitching them out, and a Fuji rep openingly admitting that Provia was supposed made to be as bad as Ektachrome, to take that market away. They had to scramble to bring out Astia, which had the bias of the original Fuji Chrome that took so many Kodak shooters away. Now all you have from them is Provia, and I'd rather shoot this!

Now I have to find a decent lab!

Great news!
Now I can get some more use out of the spiffy, like-new Ektagraphic projector I got for $5 at a thrift store.

I seem to remember a time when National Geographic magazine "only" accepted reversal submissions. Am I dreaming here? Wonder what the critera is now in the digital. Of course I remember to when "serious" photography was black and white. I must have pulled a Rip Van Winkle here!

Apologies to double post but does anyone remember what came before PowerPoint? Slide Shows were a significant bread and butter subindustry for the vast middle of the bell curve pro photographers, especially once they invented laser film recorders where one could input text and graphics (air charts!) for output as 35mm slides.

Wouldn't it be a hoot to walk into a presentation with an old Ektagraphic and your carefully arranged tray again? Kind of like Mad Men.

Funny that a week or so ago I was thinking of getting rid of the 20 or so empty carousels I have on top of bookcases in the basement, along with the slide projector. Who knew?

I always preferred Ektachrome, especially after I found that they were stable, not like the Agfachomes I also shot, which now have a very magenta cast even though they were stored the same way.

Would love to see Kodachrome back (fat chance) and still have two Dwaynes farewell t-shirts.

Would also like to see the price. Back when I shot chromes, 35mm/36 exp cost around $4, and about the same for processing with a mailer. Current Fuji price with processing is much higher these days.

I shot a hulking ton of Kodachrome and a heme-semi-demi-tone of Kodachrome back in the days when I shot slides. In its time it was find stuff. Pretty obvious, no?

Am I nostalgic for it? In a warm, old-timer, "let me tell you how it was back when I was young" way, perhaps. A bit.

In terms of making photographs today? Not one little bit. Today — as opposed to "back in the day" — slide film as a medium for making photographs doesn't have all that much to offer, and even less to offer to my photography.

To repeat the old proposal — if Kodachrome/Ektachrome photography (in all of its implications) and digital photography technology (with all of its attendant tools and techniques) had landed in their relatively mature states simultaneously perhaps five years ago, and without any prior history, I think we all know which technology would have disappeared very quickly.

'Over the next 12 months, Kodak will be working to reformulate and manufacture EKTACHROME Film' (http://www.kodak.com/corp/Blog/Blog_Post/?contentId=4295000406)

Basically they do not have a product yet. Whatever will come out of the process will not be the old Ektachrome, but a new film with an old name. It's what car manufacturers are doing all the time.
Strange though that Kodak Alaris plan to introduce the film in 35mm first, and not as a roll film. I can see why someone would want to shoot film for formats for which no digital equivalent exists (anything bigger than 6x4.5, or, at a lower price, 44x33mm), but fail to see the attraction of 35mm film.

Ektachrome got me into the TV news business. Back in 1974 I needed a job and the NBC station in town needed someone to process film. I had never run a film processing machine but I had developed a lot of Ektachrome so they took me on.
We weren't a major market so we only shot between 1200 and 2000 feet of film a day. In our shop almost everyone shot film and nearly everyone knew how to process it. Even our weekend weather guy could handle a film run.
Early on Ektachrome was a pain in the butt for a couple of reasons. First being the RCA film chains that projected our work tended to skew to blue and Ektachrome was cold anyway. This was could be made even worse if the PH in the color developer was off. With a lot of different people running film it was easy to get the chemistry out of balance.
I put a test strip on the end of all my film runs to try to keep things under control but PH was a constant headache.
About a year into my career Kodak did something really smart. They revamped their TV newsfilm stock and came out with VNF (Video News Film) 7240 and it's high speed brother 7250. Both were tungsten balanced stocks. 7240 was ISO 125 tungsten and 64 through an 85B filter in daylight. 7250 had a speed of ISO 400. Both were deliberately skewed toward warm colors and frankly were gorgeous on the air. The extra warmth was just pretty. You could also push either stock 2 to 3 stops by slowing down the processor. The few times I had to do that everything looked great if a little grainy.
In 1979 we left film for video tape and the Houston Fearless Mini Max went to the scrap yard and along with it any desire on my part to shoot stills on Ektachrome for pleasure. TXP 120 and K25 were my preferred stocks and as you know both are now gone, sigh.
Still I was happy to see Kodak responding to the uptick in interest in film. I guess I'll have to encourage my hipster friends to start agitating for a return of TXP in roll film. And Kodak while you're at it how about bringing back B&W papers?. Pencil me in for the first box of Illustrators Special.

There is something very rewarding when someone looks at your photo and spontaneously says "Wow!"
This never fails when I show my images shot in 3-D.
I shoot transparency film with a stereo (3-D) camera and there is nothing like it.
Digital virtual reality is fun but can't compare to looking at 1st generation slide film in a stereo viewer. The viewer experiences the same view as if they were standing right where the image was made.

I have the transparency film processed without mounting (2X2)or I process it (e-6) myself. It is time consuming to cut and mount the film but worth it.

Stereo cameras (two lenses) and viewers are available both new and used. You can even shoot 3-d in a SLR (or cell phone- there is an app)- just shoot 2 images with a left-right shift between shots.

There is a lot of information about this online: forums, tutorials, suppliers.

It is reassuring that there will be another transparency film choice for shooting film based 3-D.

You can try it out digitally first, it is easy,and special. You might even be moved to try it out with film.

I also collect home-made 3-D slides shot mid-century. Looking at these images of parties, weddings and family trips is like stepping into a time machine.

I have my darkroom students shoot transparency film and process it themselves.
I have slide mounts and a projector so we can have a class slideshow. It always amazes them.
So do vinyl records.

I worked daily with E-6 from the late 70s on. It was euphemistically referred to as "cool" color-wise. Filtration 5R 5Y more or helped but it was still bluish. It still had odd color dynamics, even filtered. Constant testing of batches and lab fluctuations and the cost. Oy.

So why did we use it? We shot 35mm all the way to 8x10. I could see a test strip from the New Lab in 56 minutes. Polaroid 669 was easily interpreted for Ektachrome exposure. With that sort of a system consistency and the success rate was very high.

The client loved to look at this stuff on the light table. A big 8x10 chrome was as sexy as a hot fudge sundae. Once the Agency got a hold of it scanning, scitexing (later Photoshop) made it unrecognizable from the original transparency as it had been "corrected" to look right or the way they wanted it. He who pays the Piper...

In late 1988 I was hired to shoot bricks of Kodachrome for the standardizing of the Kodachrome line the lab was getting on line. I had shot that stuff privately for travel but once I started handling these amounts I could no longer ignore the blue of Ektachrome on the light table across the room. Kodachrome looked like the world. Ekatchrome was what it was; the devil you knew.

Then there was digital...By the mid-90s transparency was on the wane. By the second mellinium it was all over but the screaming.

So Ektachrome is back. A resurgence, hardly, simply less competition leaving a potential client base. It is the same with all film devote' claims of land-office business; all the other labs are dead so it is more of a last man standing sort of thing.

I think it is great for all those folk who like it. The "it", however, is many things but for me it isn't the color. I sincerely hope that everyone has fun with it. But you'd have to pay me to shoot it.

Sven W,

I agree with what Tom said. You don't "get it right" in the camera with digital, you get a retouching base to start messing around with!

My entire professional career, when I shot "chrome" film; I never had to worry about sharpness settings, contrast settings, and color I handled with glass filters.

The idea that my Nikon has 9 sharpness settings, and only one to two of them are 'correct' in that they emulate film, and you can't see the difference on my computer screen (nor can you see any difference when trying to correct sharpness post processing), is annoying and far harder to deal with than film ever was. Ditto for contrast, and 'saturation'.

It was far, far easier to shoot to what you knew the film was in the old days, than to try to figure out what settings are correct today.

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