The Thing from Another World!

Howard Hawk’s 1952 sci-fi/horror classic, “THE THING FROM ANOTHER WORLD” starred Margaret Sheridan and Kenneth Tobey.  When the RKO studio had respected Hollywood photographer  Ernest Bachrach shoot some promo’s featuring the two main actors, his choice on that day was his 8×10 camera and Kodachrome 25.

Fast forward 65 years and a local internet memorabilia dealer who specializes in Hollywood photography has just dropped off his latest scanning job. Now, we’ve scanned a lot of gorgeous images for him from many era’s but this one was different. We pulled out this 8×10 Kodachrome and almost fell over -  almost like being there. Images shot on 8×10 are often special, while images shot on vintage Kodachrome often retain much of the original colour fidelity and to that end Kodachrome 25 was the best.  So, to get a 8×10 slide shot on Kodachrome 25 made by a Hollywood studio in excellent condition is rare! The colour is as brilliant as the day it came off the processor.

While we can scan a piece of film this size on our Epson V700 this image called out for a drum scan.  O.K., it screamed it. The really neat thing on this scan is all the retouching that was done right on the original 8×10 that would have been done with brush and dyes. There was a lot of retouching done directly on the slide as well as slightly slimming her face – no liquify tool  here!

Shown below is a reduced size version of the scan that we delivered to our client. This is the web so we’ve posted them in lower resolution and in sRGB but the quality still shines through! Getting to work on images like these is what makes our job so much fun!

So take a look and enjoy something that is truly – The Thing From Another World!

 

AnotherWorld-fullimage

Click on below image to see close-up enlargement of the face.

AnotherWorld-cropped

Make History.

While we like to think that everything we touch here in the lab is to become important historic record, from time to time we really get to see some special pieces from our past.

In this case our client brought in 46, 4×5″ glass negatives for scanning. Glass negs were produced and used between 1850 and 1920 until they were replaced by roll film. Pinpointing exact age is something beyond my skill, but the owner of the negatives is quite certain that within the grouping is an image of King Edward the VIII – indicating some of these were taken sometime between 1901 and 1910. A local film archivists informs they were likely later-made “prefab” glass negatives, which implies a later year of manufacture and a higher film speed. The quality of these images is simply beautiful.

At the time these were taken, it wasn’t likely thought of as “history in the making” but are now valuable pieces of history. What can you do with your digital files or negatives that will be history in the making? Make some prints, design an album, what ever it is, once you have it to hold it will exist for another 100 years. Historic.

 

Black and White Prints from *Film*

 [film]

noun

1. a thin layer or coating: a film of grease on a plate.
2. a thin sheet of any material: a film of ice.
3. a thin skin or membrane.
4. a delicate web of filaments or fine threads.
5. a thin haze, blur, or mist.
6. Photography
a. a cellulose nitrate or cellulose acetate composition made in thin sheets or strips and coated with a sensitive emulsion for taking photographs.
b. a strip or roll of this.
c. the coating of emulsion on such a sheet or strip or on a photographic plate.
Well, at least film, the emulsion based type, has not completely left the public consciousness. Phew! Why would I be relieved?
Oh, only because The Lab Works is now printing traditional black and white proofs directly from your film!
We still offer our scan-to-print service for those of you who like the marriage of traditional with technology. But for the rest of you who never quite got used to scanning and printing, now you don’t have to with your black and white rolls!
So, shoot to your hearts’ content (well, you should be doing that no matter what) and get your scrumptious, truest, bluest, blackest and whitest 4×6/4×5, 5×7/5×5 proofs made right here at your favourite lab!
(We will update with new prices soon!)
Happy Shooting!

pho·tog·ra·phy

pho·tog·ra·phy

[fuh-tog-ruh-fee]

noun

1. the process or art of producing images of objects on sensitized surfaces by the chemical action of light or of other forms of radiant energy, as x-rays, gamma rays, or cosmic rays.

This is what the dictionary defines as photography. If you are a photographer, a person who takes photographs, professionally or otherwise, do you also practice the art of photography? Apparently, the two are mutually exclusive and you can be either/or.
What if you are a photographer who is new to photography? Maybe you haven’t had the experience of working in a darkroom, or maybe you feel shy to have your digital masterpieces printed. Well, there is only one way to remedy that.
As a lab that’s been around for a long time, it’s staff members even longer (oh dear), we have been through many transitions of photography. Collectively, we have seen the coming and going of film types, paper types, entire companies, and now an industry that some say is doomed.
I beg to differ.
The industry and our collective memories as recorded on photo paper is only doomed as long as we don’t practice the art of photography.
The art of image making is a language. Language is effective when spoken either with the mouth, hands, eyes or body. No matter what, it has to be externalized in order for someone to know what is being said. So you take an amazing image with your DSLR,  your old rangefinder, or even your iphone. Awesome. That’s the perfect place to begin, for there, you are creating a language. You are beginning the dialogue of the idea/discussion/thought/story you want to convey. Your children are playing in the puddle, your cat is bathing in the sun, a wedding is being celebrated.
So, how are you going to keep the conversation going?
A print. A photo album. A canvas mounted wall hanging.
Photography gives your moments a voice so strong, it will speak to all who encounter it for decades.

Where did my memory go?

 

A wise person once observed that “youth is a gift, age is an art”. We undertake our responsibilities with great reverence for the traditions of our craft. After all, we are entrusted with the precious task of preserving your memories and, by extension preserving the visual documentation of our times for future generations.

What does this mean anyways?

What if someone gave you a floppy disk and said it contained 100 years of family history? How would you retrieve it? Can you be sure the information stored on that disk would still be available for retrieval? Would the files be big enough to make prints? Probably not.

So what do you do? We know that traditional, photographic prints are archival up to 100 years. Film, processed correctly, and sometimes not even so correctly is also highly stable over time. For reasons too many to list, most of us don’t shoot film anymore. The stark reality that film is  just not as popular, fun, instant, inexpensive… (But I digress. I still shoot film and love it).

The good news is this: we make traditional photographic prints from your digital files. Translate: 100 year archival. 200 years if stored in the dark. Lasting far longer than most technology that comes and goes, such as the floppy disk mentioned earlier. Generations of memories that are there to be found, like a treasure chest filled with gold. Memories made tangible, like touching the past. Who doesn’t want that for either themselves, for future family members, for strangers living in the old family home finding the prints stored in the basement tucked far back in the cold storage?

So maybe I’m romanticizing the notion of the printed image, but I know for sure, whether it’s from digital capture or film I get a thrill when I am given a print of my best friends’ baby, my friends being silly in the snow, or my mom’s flower bed in the bloom of summer.

In our house, we put up the pictures we get and take and savour the moment that image was captured. We see the life that is all around us and don’t have to refer to our computer screens to imagine it. 

It’s just so simple. You can put your memories on paper. Just download our Roes online software from the bottom of the web page.

We also process negative and slide film and make prints from them!

I like to have my cake and eat it too. I shoot film, then have it scanned.

Take pleasure in the tangible. You won’t regret it!