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David Mingay | profile | all galleries >> One Last Summer in Kodachrome tree view | thumbnails | slideshow | map

One Last Summer in Kodachrome

March 2007Kodachrome is the grandaddy of colour photography. It was the standard colour film for decades, and the film that my childhood was recorded on. But it probably won't be with us much longer. It's already getting difficult to find as many shops no longer keep it on the shelf. Kodak have discontinued the ISO25 and ISO200 versions, just leaving the 64. There is only one Kodachrome lab left in the world now, and film from the UK has to be sent to Kansas via Switzerland for processing. So to give it one last go, before it and its K-14 process are gone forever, I bought five rolls of Kodachrome 64 to shoot over the summer...

Pictures will be added to this gallery as I work my way through the film and processed slides come back from Kansas (and as they find their way through my scanner!)

Notes on scanning. My scanning has lost a bit of shadow detail that's present on the original slides. I've managed to improve this with later scans, but some of the early ones are a bit dark in the shadows.

Update March 2008. This didn't turn out quite how I planned. One year on and I'm still trying to get through my 5 rolls. I do still have some film to shoot and pictures to post. For me, this has been a bit of a disappointment. Firstly, we had such a lousy summer here that very few pictures were taken at all. Secondly I've found that the quality of what I'm getting back from Kodak is really bad. Roll 1 came back in a cheap plastic box, and subsequent slides have been packed in very flimsy cardboard boxes, with the slides themselves very dusty. On some scans I've cloned out the dust, others I've left as is. I'm sure that this is a direct result of cheap packaging. In the end, it's the difficulty and quality of the processing just sours the what should be the best part. Seeing the final results. Poorly packaged and dusty slides is not what Kodachrome was about. There is no sense of this being a premium product anymore. I'm pretty sure Kodak no longer wants to be in this business and it shows. Kodachrome is in pain, it really is time for them to pull the plug.

Update May 2008. I've now had my final roll, the 5th, back from the lab and I'm quite pleased with the results. The packaging is still poor, but the slides were clean. I was very uncertain about this final roll. I discovered mid roll that the camera I used doesn't do ISO 64. The automatic DX film speed coding could set 50, 100, 200, 400 etc but not in-between speeds. I had no idea if the camera would set it's default of iso100 - 2/3 of a stop under exposure, or the nearest available speed of iso50 - 1/3 of a stop over exposure. Looking at the slides I think it was the latter, which in my view would have been the better of the two possibilities. So that's it. Five rolls of Kodachrome, all shot and developed, 180 pictures in all. It's been both fun and frustrating. I'm not posting them all, but I do have lots more pictures to post. Watch this space!
Roll 5 frame 26
Roll 5 frame 26
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Roll 5 frame 1
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Roll 1 frame?
Roll 1 frame?
Roll 1 frame?
Roll 1 frame?
Roll 1 frame?
Roll 1 frame?
Roll 1 frame?
Roll 1 frame?