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Kodachrome 64 – The end of an era

„Mama, don't take my kodachrome away“, Paul Simon was already singing. This year, after 75 years, it became true: Kodak ends the production of this film, and the last slides were developed at Dwaynes in USA in January 2011.

The curse of our generation – we all grew up (more or less) in a digital era, and until some months ago, I even never heard of „Kodachrome“. Showing slides were something for my german teacher, annoying the class with photos of his private hobby (bulding churches with childrens bricks). First time, when I got in touch with slide films, was, when I tried crossprocessing in my Diana. Some time later, I first heard of Kodachrome, and realized, that slide films are not only for crossprocessing! I read about it, that it’s a very special film with a high sharpness, which must be developed in a special process, and that the pictures are fantastic. But nearly at the same time, they also announced the end of the Kodachrome production.

I waited for a few months until I could decide to order some Kodachrome films. The development was very expensive, one roll was 20€. But then, in the last month, it became a bit cheaper, and I finally ordered some rolls. Already too late, because I used only three of them, the November rain is not the greatest thing for taking pictures on ISO64. At the end, I had some unexposed films left, and I will try to develop them in black and white soon and tell you about the results (when there are any results, I doubt it, especially as I always develop with Caffenol-C).

Now I can proudly present two rolls of pictures with Kodachrome 64! I am impressed by the pictures, and it makes me sad that there is no more possibility to get them. As camera, I used the Canon EOS 300.

And one roll for a last homage to this great film, which made my most popular Lomowall.

I got an interesting information from a colleague of mine at work: it IS possible to develop Kodachrome at home, but it is very hard to do so. The process has about 20 steps, and his results were not comparable to the commercial development. But some photo geeks maybe want to try it.

On my slides, I also found a picture which I did not take. For all Kodachrome people in the world: does anybody miss it? It came from the last days of the Kodachrome laboratory in Germany, and shows a rainy beach. I hadn’t been at the beach until last summer, so it can’t be my shot!

written by shoujoai

1 comment

  1. robindebra

    There is a short Mini Documentary which can be seen at http://vimeo.com/22543258 but it is also at http://www.petapixel.com/2012/01/13/mini-documentary-about-kodachrome-and-the-last-lab-that-processed-it/ It is very interesting and relates to the reasons for the end.
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