A few weeks ago I went out on a nice day and took 36 pictures on Fuji Velvia 50 slide film with my Nikon N90. I’d never used this film before (I read about it on Ken Rockwell’s website) but I wanted to try it out since I have an affinity for film. Even though I mostly use a DSLR, I learned on a film SLR many years ago and so it stuck with me. A large part of it is the ritual of opening up the canister, loading the film into the camera, hearing the whining motor as it is pulled in, etc. It is a more involved process and therefore feels, to me, more satisfying.
I was very happy with the Velvia images (even though the scans were not the greatest - seemed like relatively low DPI.) And it cost about 20 dollars just to get one roll of slides processed; it had to be sent away and I had to wait a week.
I ordered some Kodak Ektar 100 negative film and will be experimenting with this as well. At least this can be more easily processed. But my question is, how much longer will this be the case? It seems as though hardly anyone still uses film. Many of the local photo shops in town have gone totally digital and don’t process film at all anymore. However, it is still available as a service at CVS, Target, and a few other department stores and supermarkets - as well as a few high-end photography shops. But how long will this last?
10 more years? 5 more years?
When will chain stores like pharmacies decide that it’s no longer profitable to process film?