I also live in Ottawa - it's too bad there is less and less local availability of B+W products. I would certainly welcome more availability in Ottawa!
That being said, it should be noted that Henry's will ship from their other stores to Ottawa free of charge (with a turn around of a few days). Though less than ideal, it is certainly an option.
In terms of film, it is also getting harder and harder (I find the best choice for film in Ottawa is Henry's in Kanata). I know the prices for film are substantially higher than other stores in Montreal / Toronto. So, if you order a reasonable amount, it will actually come out cheaper to pay the shipping and order on-line. NOTE: I have also had luck in getting Henry's to match the Vistek prices for film.
I see you sell Galerie!!
Thanks Rob: I am happy to see you carry Galerie. My next order is going to you!
Originally Posted by Rob Skeoch
The US director has spoken with our Canadian marketing people, and indeed Rob Skeoch has stated that our distribution ex USA works very well. We are comfortable with the distributioon model, but we are on the phone today doing an audit of product availability in Ottawa and elsewhere in Canada.
Once again many thanks for keeping a vigilant eye on the market.
On a 'general' level, talking to photo retailers does work, we have a new account opened recently because people were asking for 'darkroom' and he had never stocked paper and chemistry before, reinforcing what you are prepared to buy does work with most retailers :
Simon ILFORD photo / HARMAN technology Limited :
I have PMd Simon on the same problem here in Halifax several times. I think he cares but I sense he is stuck with an arrangement he can't do anything about. Apparently Ilford considers Canada to be North AMERICA which it is becoming less and less philosophically. This arrangement ain't gonna work.
Originally Posted by tmike
Large minimum orders are not new in retail, however when Ilford is the only game other than smaller players it is time to re-evaluate policy. There is no Canadian warehouse, therefore stock must be ordered from the USA.
Originally Posted by Simon R Galley
The price of Ilford MG RC paper took a pretty sharp price increase this, year as did the chemistry. The liquid chemicals took a big leap as well, plus as classified as hazardous chemicals they have to be shipped surface freight, which often has problems at the border. Again if there was a warehouse in Canada it may help.
The other problem is the lack of a level playing field, if I was a large Toronto chain I qualify for a volume rebate, whereas the small local independent retailer, who is more likely the darkroom dealer is not able to be competitive, the catch 22 is the chain isn't interested in promoting chemical paper & supplies. Hell printer ink and inkjet paper is easier to flog..
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The retailer who complains about Wynit's 'unreasonable' minimum order policy is pumping bullbleep. This from Wynit's own website:
All orders under $100.00 are subject to a $5.00 handling charge."
A retailer's restocking order for film, paper and chemistry doesn't have to be for very much to get to $100. They just don't want to handle it.
"I always take a camera, That way I never have to say 'Gee, look at that - I wish I had a camera'" -Joe Clark, H.B.S.S.
My retailer (Don's Photo) has a pretty good supply of Ilford stuff, and can get what I want reasonably quickly. The only problem I've had is getting postcard paper (which I got from Rob Skeoch instead).
Honestly, I don't care where I can get it from, as long as I can get it economically. We're getting to the point in the b&w world where, unless you live in a massive city, you have to plan ahead a bit about what you need.
I get to Eight Elm in Toronto once a year or so - it's a great little store. I try to buy something every time I go. I got some 4x5 sheet film holders last time since I had a ton of paper and chemistry. The time before I got some Forte paper (which I will miss now that it's gone).
Jim MacKenzie - Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
A bunch of Nikons; Feds, Zorkis and a Kiev; Pentax 67-II (inherited from my deceased father-in-law); Bronica SQ-A; and a nice Shen Hao 4x5 field camera with 3 decent lenses that needs to be taken outside more. Oh, and as of mid-2012, one of those bodies we don't talk about here.
Favourite film: do I need to pick only one?
I work in a small retail photo in PA USA, and I never have any problems ordering from Wynit. 100 dollars is easy to obtain even at cost, and its not 100 dollars of each product either.
"The negative is the equivalent of the composer's score, and the print the performance." ~Ansel Adams
Bullbleep? Can't get that up here, either....
From what I understand, the minimum order is much higher for retailers across the border here in Canada. Duty, brokerage, restrictions and paperwork with respect to liquid chemicals, etc.; all that enters into play when there's a border (and homeland security, don't forget) involved. If it was $100, I can't imagine anyone complaining.
Anyhow, always a chance you're right. We'll see if we get an answer and a solution.
Originally Posted by Lopaka
Originally Posted by panchromatic
And about internet/mail order
I have no problem with internet/mail order. There are a lot of great suppliers out there and their service is great. I do tend to patronize hometown grass-roots enterprises first, though. Whereas big-box retail and internet sales are here to stay, I give them a lower priority (and appreciate them when I do need to use them). We have to make a bigger effort than ever in our society to keep things face-to-face and personal.
I'll repeat that I think that it's not true that one last small retailer cannot make a go of an analog/darkroom supply section in a region of over a million people, three schools that teach darkroom and 4 photo clubs. To be able to keep the basics in stock and to special-order more esoteric items should not be that hard. The contact with an eager retailer that understands the needs of the community adds to the local interaction and the survival of the medium.
So, if one of the major problems is a barrier in the form of an arbitrary minimum order policy that is actually counter productive, then it should be fixed. Maybe it will be fixed.
But, maybe our retailers have simply stopped believing. Nothing new there.