Ilfochrome - sales drive

Discussion in 'Color: Film, Paper, and Chemistry' started by Matt5791, Nov 21, 2010.

  1. Matt5791

    Matt5791 Subscriber

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    We've done a lot of digging around with Ilfochrome recently, and it has to be the most poorly promoted product I have ever encountered. Considering this is the ultimate photographic printing method on the planet, it's a pretty sorry state of affairs.

    Then, I realised the possible reason for this: virtually nobody (apart from those who are actually using it) seems to understand the actual product range - only when I have started speaking directly with Switzerland has it started to become clear.

    So we are doing a new marketing drive and I'm sure a few new Ilfochrome workers will emerge! Yes, Ilfochrome is expensive, but then so is sticking some high end Hahnemühle in an inkjet printer, and that would (of course) be an inferior print too.

    http://www.ag-photographic.co.uk/ilfochrome-classic-296-c.asp

    We still have some construction to do on the Ilfochrome section of the website (such as listing the P3 and P3X lab chemical packs) but we've got the entire range of paper listed now.

    If anyone has anything to add to this page: http://www.ag-photographic.co.uk/information-about-processing-and-printing-with-ilfochrome-345-c.asp

    Please drop me a line any time - the key to growing use of traditional photo products is educating the customer, especially with specialist products such as Ilfochrome.

    Matt
     
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  2. sharperstill

    sharperstill Member

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    Interestingly I received a message yesterday from one of Australia's last (and certainly Sydney's last) professional Ilfoc hrome printer (Sandra Barnard) who is thinking she'll have to stop offering the service soon. She printed a lot of Trent Parke's recent work and, I think, feels that it's too expensive to keep the processing machine working properly when doing such a small amount of work.

    J
     
  3. Poisson Du Jour

    Poisson Du Jour Member

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    Oh really. Is it news? Seems to me it's the same old excuse that Chromacolour Adelaide gave. "Not economical". "Falling demand". "Digital does it better". "Owner sick of it". But there was more to it than excuses e.g. CC dealing with a poisoned chalice. Supply difficulties, faults in bulk media, delays, re-routes, machine failures (even a toxic chemical emergency in the 'burbs of Adelaide)... Oh, Ilfochrome is poorly promoted alright. It's now more widely referred to derisively as "that arcane print type", which is bloody ridiculous. True, nobody understands it and few now seem to care about it (you wonder why); it is the job of the photographer to explain the process, beauty and longevity of chromes — the lab is only responsible for producing a print (eventually...). It is the lab that should be promoting it, but no, that doesn't happen.

    Me, I'm now finished with Ilfochrome after 16 wonderful years with ChromaColour (my last 4 prints were produced a week before they shut their doors in March this year). Happy with that sterling effort despite the hassles and now it's time to move on to the next frontier. Thanks for the memories. :mad:
     
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  4. Jerevan

    Jerevan Subscriber

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    Good to see someone picking up on the Ilfochrome - and you are correct in that the key (to any analog product) is educating the customer.
     
  5. sandholm

    sandholm Subscriber

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    This is the best news for years, Ilfochrome has lived a hidden life which is completely wrong. The material is excellent, i have even printed B/W on it and turns out really nice. I think it needs more information about the quality, archivability and how easy it is to use.

    For example, DR5 has a process that gives this brownish/sepia toned positiv and they print wonderful on ilfochrome.

    For information, you talke about processors and try but one of the best way is to use a standing processor (like the Nova), the chemicals stay fresh and its easy to handle the prints.

    It would alos be good to have an introduction on how to print using ilfochrome. I dont like RA4 because it differs so much when printing negatives, ilfochrome you dial in your preferred look and process and when you get a new pack of paper you can calculate the new standard filter setting on the enlarger.

    what is needed is also good tutorial such as (but more up to date):
    http://www.luminous-landscape.com/tutorials/ilfochro.shtml

    Also, it could be cool to have a list of museum/galleries that shows ilfochrome.

    Good work, my next order will be through you.

    cheers
     
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  6. coigach

    coigach Member

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    I agree that Ilfochrome makes great prints from dr5 positive transparencies - I've got some on my wall looking at me as I type :smile:.

    Just want to correct a couple of inaccuracies however - dr5 reverse processed transparencies are positives, not negatives, and are not 'brownish - sepia'. They are 'straight' b+w with no colour cast. I've had many 100's of rolls of dr5 processed over the years - Delta 100 is my standard landscape film and it produces wonderful tonally rich b+w postives.
    Here's a link to all the films dr5 reverse:

    http://www.dr5.com/blackandwhiteslide/filmreview.html

    You'll see from the link that Dr5 also offer a 'developer 2' option which is sepia, but this is a separate thing altogether to the standard b+w 'developer 1' option...

    Cheers,
    Gavin
     
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  7. Stephen Frizza

    Stephen Frizza Member

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    Hell, I'm going to get shot to pieces for this I'm sure, but if you love Ilfochrome so much why not buy a processor and start printing it yourselves? I know my associate Sandra Barnard is looking to leave Ilfochrome but I share the 50 inch ilfochrome processor and while it may not be an easy thing I am certainly motivated to keep it running. There is a lot I could say on the matter of ilfochrome but I have said it all in other threads before. Frankly ilfochrome is passed its hey day but it isn't dead. So while its here, if you really do love it fuel every dollar you have into it before it dies. Perhaps if some of you do this it might live a little longer. ine print here one print there wont keep it alive, start printing decent sized works in editions and print them in one go etc.... print print print use the material. I ask of you all how many square meters of ilfochrome have you personally used this year? how many liters of the chemistry have you bought?
     
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  8. perkeleellinen

    perkeleellinen Member

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    I think for about 9 months now I've been in a shall I - shan't - I situation with Ilfochrome. I'm wondering about the chemistry - can I use it in a Nova processor? My darkroom has no ventilation, big problem?
     
  9. Stephen Frizza

    Stephen Frizza Member

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    one way to find out....just do it hehehehe
     
  10. thegman

    thegman Member

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    I'd love to see a list of labs/individuals who will do it for me. I don't even process BW film yet, so Ilfochrome would be far too much of a stretch. However, I'd gladly pay one of the good folks here to do it for me.
     
  11. sandholm

    sandholm Subscriber

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    True, the "straight" DR5 is neutral but what i like is to print the second option (developer 2) which gives the brown-sepia color and which print perfect using ilfochrome.
     
  12. sandholm

    sandholm Subscriber

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    Well, i have used the ilfochrome chemicals for a long time, its not unsually toxic (not like selenium). However the bleach component is very corrosive, just forget to use any steel/iron product. I use gloves and a carbon filter face mask when i mix/handle the chemicals. When they are in the Nova processer I only use gloves (I have very sensitiv hands, i can handle any chemicals on the skin). I do have ventilation in the darkroom, but it has happen that i forgot to turn it on and nothing has happen. I think you are safe.

    If you decided to use a Jobo processor you can place the processor in any well ventilated area because the plastic tube is light tight. Before i got the Nova processor i used a Jobo and sometimes i still run ilfochrome in it.

    So dont worry, get a small package of medium contrast paper and the P30 2l kit, you will love the color, and you can print any positiv you have. Just try it.

    cheers
     
  13. Wayne

    Wayne Member

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    You want ventilation. I'm sure if you detail your darkroom setup someone can devise a vent system for it.
     
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  15. coigach

    coigach Member

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    Here's Ilford SFX dr5 reverse processed in sepia dev 2 - I've a large framed Ilfochrome print of this on my wall...:smile:

    Cheers,
    Gavin
     

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  16. perkeleellinen

    perkeleellinen Member

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    My darkroom is tiny, tiny. A cupboard under the stairs, one wall faces the sitting room the other into the garage. Unfortunately, this is rented accommodation so I can't smash a hole into the garage to fit an extractor. Luckily, because it's so small, I rarely stay in there for long - one print and I'm out washing it in the kitchen sink. Because of this I think I tend to stay in there for 5 - 10 minutes maximum. I've never had any issues with RA4 or B&W chems, the Nova has such a narrow opening that little is exposed to air and I tend to put the lids back on straight after removing the print.

    It sounds like I could give Ilfochrome a good stab. The only hurdle now is cost! Perhaps I'll get my wife to treat me for Christmas!
     
  17. dng88

    dng88 Member

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    As a totally novice and if I have to start it on top of my development of slide for scanning and black and white printing, what are the other bits I needed. Ok, to be more specific,

    Can these chemicals ship to Hong Kong? How much it actually costs to print one 8x10? Can it print using any slide (Velvia 50/Kodak E100 etc. in 6x6, 6x7, 6x8 up to 4x5 )? Can you contact print (8x10 E6 slide, mostly Velvia 50)? I got Jobo (in fact 4 different types including CPA2, CPE2, ATL1500 and DuoLab) but I only get a black and white enlarger (China made one and Beseler 4x5 with cold head)? What other can get you start ... in fact what other missing bits I need to do RA4 and this process?
     
  18. sandholm

    sandholm Subscriber

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    Hi, will try to answear a bit of your questions, to start with I consider RA4 to be a much harde process and much more "quessing" then ilfochrome. When you use ilfochrome you have a standard filter setup, that means the filter you use to render a "standard" print based on your way of measuring light/development and preferences. When you get a new box of paper you do not have to waist paper to get the same "standard" print, instead you calculate this from your last box of filter setting to your new box. Therefore, when you have figured out the filter setting for a print and you make one. Two years later someone else want to have a print, the only thing you have to do now (if you wrote down your filter settings) is to calculate the differences between the boxes and add to your standard filter settings. This sounds more hard then it is, its super easy :wink:


    (prices from http://www.ag-photographic.co.uk/ without the shipping)
    P30 Kit 2l cost £119.95
    Ilfochrome Med.Contrast 8x10" 25 £54.00

    From the P30 you can print 26 8x10 (16 8x10 per liter), so to print one 8x10
    (119.95/26)+54/25 = 6.773 punds (then plus shipping). Now the larger quantities you get of paper/chemicals the cheaper it gets.
    Yes, if it fits in the enlarger and its a positiv you can
    I dont see a reason why you should not be able to. There are people who use it in cameras. http://www.1827.eu/GoingUltra/GoingUltra-3.htm

    Yes, there is a ilforchrome filter set that i think you still can purchase, at least on ebay or any other auction homepage. They are not as handy as a color head but it works.

    Go for it, you will like it.
     
  19. kompressor

    kompressor Member

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    I used Ilfochrome in my lab until january this year. It was just harder and hardert to get hold of chemicals and paper. Scandinavianphoto seems to have it in stock, but the price of the products seems to scare the buying custom. even ers of mine. Even the very large companies says: Use inkjet for our ordered pictures. They dont wanna pay the price for Ilfochrome. even when you lay a inkjet and a Ilfochrome side by side the cant seem to find a good enought reason to pay for the higher quality. Its more like this: - What the heck, the inkjet looks good enough to hang on our wall. After framing and matting nobody of our guests will see any difference.

    And as a photographer, im not paying the price for the customers anymore. Maybe galleries and art-customers are the last stand of customers who really by out of quality and estetiqe? For me it loooks like that.
     
  20. perkeleellinen

    perkeleellinen Member

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    A couple of questions for all you Ilfochrome old hands:

    - Out of a pack of 25 sheets, would it seem reasonable to hope for 15-20 prints?
    - If I cut some sheets into strips, and then use those for colour balancing, I am balancing for the paper or the slide? As I can see the positive image projected, I can tweak the filtration until it looks right. Am I then just tweaking to fit the paper's balance?
     
  21. sandholm

    sandholm Subscriber

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    Well, your first pack you have to dial in your "standard" filter setting, which means the filter you use to render a "standard" print made with your film and your way of shooting/development and preferences. After that, you can expect at least 15 good one from a package (if you dont want to do something super elaborate). 20 well, maybe, if they are all well exposed and no strange colors.

    For example, if you already have printed a negative and you know your filter settings, you can grab a new box, calculate the corresponding filter settings for this box and get 25 perfect prints.
    Well, each paper has it own color calibrations, using this you can calculate your standard filtering, when this is done you will really be fine tuning, maybe lift some magenta from the sky... but really really just fine tuning. Its not like RA4 were you use a lot of test strips to get the filter setting right for that specific package and you have to start over when you grab a new box.

    So, long answer short, the paper you calibrate after the color calibration values of the box, after that its only the color shift you have in the negative.

    For more info see: http://www.luminous-landscape.com/tutorials/ilfochro.shtml

    cheers
     
  22. perkeleellinen

    perkeleellinen Member

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    Thanks Sandholm,

    This is likely to be a very occasional thing for me as I'd need to accumulate 15-20 'keeper' shots before printing them otherwise the chemistry will long expire before I've shot enough nice photos. I have in mind to dig through my old slides and select 15 or so nice ones and try to print them. If I fall in love with the process, it would quite easily take me 12 months to get another 15 shots that are good enough to justify spending £175 to get 15 prints. So, I'm keen to get as much 'bang for my buck' so to speak.
     
  23. dng88

    dng88 Member

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    Thanks Sandholm.

    Would try if I can sort out the shipping and get the filter set.
     
  24. dr5chrome

    dr5chrome Member

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    There should be more promo of this material, absolutely. We refer a few very good labs in LA to print our chromes, Frank Green doing the best work, he is still very busy. Considering the quality of the print, it's not really all the expensive if you think about the alternatives...

    For a soul CIBA printer in the entire country of Australia to not have enough work to stay in business is a shame...

    dw
     
  25. ndrs

    ndrs Subscriber

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    I have everything ready to start with Ilfochrome: 50 sheets of 25,4x30,5 paper, a P30 kit and a CAP40 processor I have only tested (successfully) with water so far. Now I'm waiting for my last batch of Kodachromes to come back, then I should have enough good slides for a proper printing session within the lifetime of a chemistry kit.
    If I succeed (and why shouldn't I?), I'll definitely buy more materials although I'd prefer to get bleach separately and experiment with standard developer and fixer. It's not that much about cost as about flexibility. Does anybody know where can I buy only bleach in Europe?
    And finally, I can only agree with the OP about the difficulty of understanding the product range.
     
  26. darkroom_rookie

    darkroom_rookie Member

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    You can buy bleach here:

    http://www.fotomayr.de/webkat98/index_lab.htm

    Click on 'Chemie' on top, then 'Color Papierentwicklung' on the left.
    Scroll to the bottom and there it is.
    If only they would ship outside EU...

    d_rookie