Photography and commentary from John Fujimagari


Kodachrome 64

I was cleaning out my old camera bag the other day, something that I haven’t done in at least 15 years. The Lowepro Elite bag holds my two Nikon film bodies, a few lenses and a Vivitar 283 flash. In it is an FM and an N2000, my main camera being the FM. I thought of the N2000 as my action camera with it’s motorized film advance. When I quit shooting film in the early 1990’s, I just put the camera bag in the closet and left it there. When I started shooting digital I grabbed my old Manfrotto tripod and away I went with a new Think Tank Photo bag. When I upgraded to the D300s in 2009, I grabbed my Nikkor 50mm f/1.4 AIS lens from the bag to use on the digital body.

This year, Darwin Wiggett is hosting his “Holga Hustle” and Print Show, and I thought it was a good opportunity to shoot some more film.  So, I finally got around to cleaning out the old Lowepro, I first carried it outside and used a half can of Dust Off on it then I brought it in and used a pet hair roller on the outside to remove the cat hair before I even opened it. I figured I’d have to replace all of the batteries before using the old cameras, and I was right. In checking everything out, I found that I had a third of a roll of Kodak Ektar 100 left inside my N2000, who knows what’s on the first part of the roll? I guess I’ll find out soon. Worse, I found two unused 36 exposure rolls of Kodachrome 64 in the camera bag. Duane’s Photo of Parsons, Kansas made the last processing run of Kodachrome in the World on December 30, 2010. Worse yet, my rolls had prepaid processing on them. If I had remembered that they were in the camera bag, I would have gladly double paid the processing. Now they might be an interesting conversation piece, but not much else.

I remember in 1988 Kodak brought in a complete Kodachrome lab to Calgary for the Winter Olympic games. It was located at the Olympic Press Center and was big news in the photographic community. My friends at Nikon had contacts at Kodak and we pooled all of our Kodachrome and did a run to Kodak every day. It was the only time I ever had overnight processing on Kodachrome film. For me they were the glory days of Kodachrome. Do you miss film or did you ever shoot film?

In the best light…


4 responses

  1. I definitely miss film. I feel I could compose my photos and get much better results as I didn’t have to be so perfect as with digital. Perhaps I don’t know enough?? How does one use a digital camera to capture a precise moment when there is a tiny bit of lag time before the picture is made?


    May 6, 2011 at 15:23

  2. conrad

    I found a roll of unexposed Kodachrome 64 back in November in the freezer. I was decided to keep it as a memory rather than rushing to expose it and send down to Duanes. “Don’t take my Kodachrome away!”


    May 7, 2011 at 12:03

  3. I began shooting with film in the early 90’s and yes I miss it a lot! Although there are perks to digital – ie. seeing the shot right away – I still love film and there is something special about developing a picture – placing it in a tray and watching it come to life right before your eyes that I will always love !!!


    May 7, 2011 at 20:20

  4. Hiro

    Hi, John. I hope you remember me, met you at the Holga hustle, the crazy 4×5 guy.

    Here may be info to utilize your Kodachrome.


    May 23, 2011 at 22:32

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