NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Kodachrome (1935-2010) has officially met its end. Dwayne's Photo in Parsons, Kansas -- the last laboratory with the capability to develop the storied color-reversal film -- will develop its final roll on Thursday.
in 1935, Kodachrome was a popular color slide film with a storied history. Known for its archival characteristics, early Kodachrome slides from the 1930s provide a rare,
For several decades, Kodachrome films dominated the consumer and professional photography market, compelling singer Paul Simon to immortalize the product with his 1973 hit song,
By 1990, Kodachrome embarked upon a two-decade demise, spurred by the release of Fujichrome Velvia. Fuji's rival offering, a reversal film rated at ISO 50, offered photographers a slide as sharp as Kodachrome 25 that was twice as sensitive to light.
also utilized a common development process known as E-6, which could be performed less expensively than Kodak's proprietary K-14 development process, necessary to develop Kodachrome films.
In the early 2000s, digital cameras manufactured by
placed further pressure on the film products industry, forcing Kodak to discontinue the no-longer-profitable Kodachrome 25 in 2002. Devotees of the film scrambled to buy inventory, storing it in their freezers for years to come and creating a secondary market for the film on auction web sites such as
In June of 2009,
Kodak discontinued Kodachrome 64
, the last remaining Kodachrome film.
For many photographers, December 30, 2010, will be a funeral for a friend.
-- and why it meant so much to them.
As photographer Dan Bayer writes on his
, "While I do shoot lots of digital, I have more than a warm place in my heart for Kodachrome as I started using the film some 29 years ago at age 13.... For what it is worth, I am very impressed that Kodak has made the film this long. It truly is a statement in product commitment and longevity so I have to really thank them for that."
-- Written by John DeFeo in New York City
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