Editorial with on-location coverage and additional photo documentation.
In 1983, if a fashion photographer worked for labels like
Armani, Dior, Mercedes Benz and many more, you could be
fairly certain that the photographer’s career goals had been
reached. But not so for Jan C. Schlegel.
At what most people would have seen
as the height of their career, he decided
he was done with photography and looked elsewhere for
meaningful success, first working in a home for the mentally
disabled and then digging wells
for drought-stricken Ethiopia.
Only through this crucible could Schlegel reinvent
himself and return to his true passion, photography,
after a 19-year hiatus. Today, his fine-art platinum
and silver-gelatin prints made from 4×5 inch negatives
sell for as much as €90,000 in limited editions.
The Pentacon Six TL is a phenomenon of a camera. When I first got mine, I almost fell in love with it, because I liked the idea of shooting 6×6 and was fascinated by the bulky yet somehow elegant design of the camera. Prior to owning the Pentacon Six, I only shot 6×7 in my RB67 Pro SD, so using the P6 seemed like a quite pleasant change from my usual shooting habit.
But as it with so many things, be it cameras or amorous relationships, at some point in time routine kicks in and brings every little flaw into the bright and unforgiving light of day. In some cases, love begins to mutate into hate, or something in between.
Informing, fact-based reporting
Tetenal does not only produce photochemicals but is also deeply invested in digital inkjet printing. For example, it manufactures most Epson inks and a lot of digital inkjet papers for the European market. Plainly put, Tetenal is an integral part of digital and analog photography industries alike. Too big, and too important, to fail. Without Tetenal’s chemistry branch, a lot of photographers, photofinishers, labs, printing companies and even the once so mighty Kodak itself might be left out in the rain, as Tetenal reportedly produces not only chemistry for EU distribution under license from Kodak but directly produces source chemicals for Kodak’s U.S. manufacturing.
Whenever PetaPixel has published an article about chemical photography in recent months, it has been met with a plethora of malicious, if not even downright hateful, comments. They’re left by photographers who claim that only they may decide on how other photographers, their colleagues, or even hobbyists who simply enjoy photography for what it is may pursue photography as their passion or job.
It might be difficult to conclude that the photographic community is divided based on empirical data, but many perceive it that way and it gets obvious if you read comments that express the wish for chemical photography to vanish completely. Or comments that get personal by wishing me “to run out of film soon, so I can get into photography.”
Whenever I read such comments, I think about the arrogance and attitude behind them. What right does a photographer have to tell another photographer how to do his or her job? None. That’s for sure, except when one is employed by the other, of course.
But that doesn’t answer the question of why many still think they may tell others what to do and what not to do with their work, with their creativity, with their lives, and with their time. Why is chemical photography perceived to be a threat to some? Another question I can’t answer: if it isn’t perceived to be a threat, why would anyone even bother to try to discourage people from doing it?
Digital photography is superior to film in some areas, while film is superior in others. This article, however, is not about the old discussion why one method of capturing an image is better than another. This article is about the way we value photography and the process that goes with it and thus the personal level of creating an image. A process called creativity.
What if you had a scanning solution for color negative and black and white film that enabled you to scan and convert a whole roll of 35mm film in less than 15 minutes and all that in next to pro-lab scan quality – at home?
To do such things one must have a Frontier Minilab standing in their living room, right? Although a fantastic concept, very few have such a machine at home and well, neither do I. There is, however, a relatively new solution out there that may allow those of us who scan, or want to scan color negatives at home and produce lab-quality results. It’s called Negative Lab Pro and is nothing less than a revolution – at least in my humble opinion.
Negative Lab Pro is a simple to use plugin for Adobe Lightroom 6 and Lightroom CC Classic, allowing you to work within your existing archives without adding yet another application to your workflow.
It seems that “what if…?” above is actually achievable, so what now?
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