Don’t take my Kodak away | Eamonn McCabe | CiF |

The very name Kodak is synonymous with all that is good about photography. It’s an irony that just as film is making a comeback with many photographers, the major firm in photography’s history – which made its first camera way back in 1888—is struggling.

Kodak’s film has been used by every photographer worth his salt, or should that be silver, for more than 100 years. Those little yellow film boxes with the familiar red writing said you cared about your work, and in the case of Kodachrome were prepared to wait days while Kodak sent it to Paris to be processed.

Photographers, a wily bunch, have seen this demise coming for a while and many have fridges full of “out of date” film that they ration.

Funnily enough, I am finding an increasing interest in film photography again, possibly because of a ground swell of interest in the wider photography world where people are rediscovering the joys of analogue photos. I still have my Olympus 35mm SLR, and blogged recently about adventures with larger formats.

I would like to take issue with Mr McCabe’s contention that Kodak failed to adapt to the digital revolution. Kodak invented digital photography. The first professional digital cameras were made by Kodak in the early 1990s, and almost every domestic digital camera was a Kodak until their competition caught up.

Oddly, aside from the occasional roll of slide film, I was never a Kodak baby. I adopted Fuji as my main colour film, and Ilford as my black and white film. And then digital arrived in my life. If I do decide to get back into analogue photography, I suspect I will work in black and white almost exclusively—if only because it gives me an option to process my own film easily.

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