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I got a Nikon camera

December 31, 2010

Kodachrome is dead. Film is basically dead.

And we’re all the worse off for it. Enjoy your crappy little iPhone pictures.

The darling slide film was retired by Kodak in 2009. And for the past year, countless “last rolls” have been shot and sent to a small lab for processing. Dwayne’s Photo in Parsons, Kan., has been the last remaining photo lab in the world to process the color slide film. But today Dwayne’s is closing the proverbial Kodachrome door and officially ending its processing service.

I asked Dwayne Steinle, owner of the photo lab, to recall some of the more remarkable imagery that he’d seen and processed over the years. “Everything on Kodachrome seems to be remarkable for the person who took it,” he says.

Which gets to the heart of this goodbye. It’s not all about the National Geographic cover images or the Kodak ads shot on the film. It’s about your past and mine, sitting in boxes, waiting to be projected. The photo of my mother in a green raincoat will never rival the green eyes of the Afghan girl. But it will always be iconic in our house.

“It’s what some people like to call progress,” Dwayne Steinle says. “But it’s very disappointing that we have this particular film at the end of its run.” As for Dwayne’s: Business will continue — as will photography. It’s not the end of the world, but is certainly the end of an era.

One Comment leave one →
  1. January 1, 2011 2:12 pm

    I hate the iPhone.

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