Friday, November 27, 2009

Kodachrome-The Last Roll

I took this shot @ Drive Invasion 2008 in Atlanta after The Legendary Shack Shakers left the stage amidst a literal storm of Pabst Blue Ribbon beer and other flying objects. I was back stage on state left shooting towards the crowd. I like this shot because even though it's "digital" it reminds me of the warm glow of Kodachrome 64. I rarely use artificial strobe lights when shooting concerts.
This was taken with available light at ISO 1600, 1/60 second, F/5, on full manual setting.

I just watched a news special about Kodachrome film. There is only ONE lab in the world that still processes this kind of film...yes I said FILM! Not a digital chip but FILM!

I grew up with Kodachrome as my father Ron Sr. recorded our lives through the lens of his old Argus C3 35mm rangefinder camera. Film of choice? Kodachrome 64. Our family has thousands of slides. When I went out on my own, I continued to shoot Kodachrome for family events. I too have thousands of slides.

In December of 2010, the last lab on the planet will stop developing Kodachrome film. The end of an era Comrades. Until the invention of Kodachrome in the 1930s, the only way you could have a "color" image of yourself was to have a painting created. With Kodachrome, the common man could have a color image.

Even though my full-time gig is Corporate Wellness, I'm also a member of the Professional Photographers of America and still do quite a bit of photography especially in the music business....allow me to flashback for a moment...
The good thing about learning to shoot with film is that I still shoot like I'm shooting film. What does this mean? I have a lot sharper eye for composition, subject, light, and subject energy than many of the new photographers. With digital, you can shoot thousands of images in one setting. With film, you had to be a lot more selective, patient, and basically much more skilled at your craft. Film capacity? 36 exposures per roll. At a rock concert back in the day, I'd shoot around 4-6 rolls of film. Today with my digital Nikon, I'll shoot around 250 or so. Slightly more, but I'm still conservative and selective. I think this makes me a better photographer. It's not quantity even though if you shoot enough eventually you'll probably get some great photographs--it's more about QUALITY. It's also easier to go through a few hundred photos than a few thousand when thinking of editing and print selection.

Anyway...just some random thoughts from an old school photographer that grew up with Kodachrome 64. -RJ

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