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  1. #1
    Ektagraphic's Avatar
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    The Fate of Ilfochrome

    Hello
    I have just been getting into Ilfochrome prints...The first prints I have had made should be back from the lab on Tuesday. I used Visual- Imaging as they were the best price I found. I just have some unanswed questions....How many people are still using Ilfochrome? How much time does it have left? I am not worried...just curious. I have heard amazing things about it and I will soon see for myself. Why have you not had Ilfochromes made of your slides? Cost? I think it is important to try to keep Ilfochrome around to be able to still print slides by hand...Maybe we need to have an Ilfochrome Project division of the Kodachrome Project....What are your thoughts about Ilfochrome?

    Patrick
    Helping to save analog photography one exposure at a time

  2. #2
    timbo10ca's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ektagraphic View Post
    What are your thoughts about Ilfochrome?

    Patrick
    I friggin' love it and wish it was easier to find cheaply (and locally).....

    Tim
    If only we could pull out our brains and use only our eyes. P. Picasso

    http://www.timbowlesphotography.com

  3. #3
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    I used to use Ilfochrome it was re-badged Sakura E6 film and not really up to the same qualities as Fuji or Kodak. I still have an unprocessed roll somewhere.

    Also I made many Cibachromes but actually preferred the colours and less garish contrast of the Fuji R3 reversal process. Cibachrome/Ilfochrome was never to everyones taste, in fact few photographers I know liked them, but a few people loved it

    Ian

  4. #4

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    In a month or so (I am in preparation, as time allows), I will be printing a fair amount of Ilfochrome - approx 250 sheets of 11x14. I have been stockpiling the paper and chemicals as finances allow. I will be using a Durst Printo. Most of the images will be from Kodachromes which print really well.
    There are very few places that supply the materials and it is of course expensive. Freestyle will now take orders of Ilfochrome paper and chemicals and will have them shipped from the distributor. Depending on how things will go, this might be my last print run. I have also noticed that I am shooting a lot less color than I used to.

  5. #5

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    For some years I actually made most of my living selling Ilfochrome prints. Some transparencies will prove easy to print, and some will prove difficult. Maybe a 1/3 of my 30+ year body of work was relatively easy. Another 1/3 difficult, and the remainder were hopeless. I suggest you keep a very thorough log for every print; I did and soon found it an invaluable reference.

    Kodachrome and early Fujichrome 100 were easiest. Flat-lit Velvia 50, not hard. Lumiere and the other Ektachromes of the mid 90's like 100SW had issues as does Fujichrome Provia.The gamut didn't work for me with certain films, you'd get some strange color crosses that I would pull my hair out trying to correct for. Before you get far along in it, you'll need/want to learn unsharp silver masking. I made my own punch register system for 35mm and found one of the last boxes of Kodak Pan Masking Film on the planet.

    The CPM1M fiber based paper is a lot less expensive and has lower contrast than all but one of the polyester based emulsions. By the turn of the millenium, fresh materials started to get harder and harder to find. The little 2L P30 boxed chemistry kits were usually so old that the bleach would only last a couple of days once mixed, what paper I could find locally was all aged and magenta-shifted. You can probably find a large volume darkroom supply place to sell you jugs of P3 but here in CA it's hazmat and can't be shipped so it was 6 hours R/T and $50 of gas to go fetch it. Even if you can find the chemistry still it won't do much good if the paper has been sitting around too long.

    By comparison, RA4 printing is a joy. Frankly, about 5 years ago Ilfochrome became not worth the effort to me anymore, not when there are far far more effective ways to print that offer more color and contrast control and are purportedly just as archival. No one buying prints ever asks if they're Ilfochromes/Cibachromes, incidentally.

  6. #6
    Iwagoshi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pupfish View Post
    By comparison, RA4 printing is a joy. Frankly, about 5 years ago Ilfochrome became not worth the effort to me anymore, not when there are far far more effective ways to print that offer more color and contrast control and are purportedly just as archival. No one buying prints ever asks if they're Ilfochromes/Cibachromes, incidentally.
    Eventhough sometimes a contrast pain, the Ilfo/Cibachromes have a glow about them, the reds and yellows pop.

  7. #7
    Ektagraphic's Avatar
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    My first Ilfochrome 11X14 should be coming in the mail any time now....I really wish I could have a darkroom to print them myself.
    Helping to save analog photography one exposure at a time

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    Quote Originally Posted by Iwagoshi View Post
    Eventhough sometimes a contrast pain, the Ilfo/Cibachromes have a glow about them, the reds and yellows pop.
    If he's having someone else do these, without either dodging/burning or contrast masking the OP may be in for some contrast pain, alright.

    I find reds and yellows are not only beautiful on RA4 papers like Fuji Crystal Archive and Supra Endura, as well, but more accurately saturated. Magentas and especially purples are often garish on Ciba/Ilfochrome, often freakishly so from Velvia 50 originals. Exposures specifically tailored to Ciba/Ilfochrome would be a little flat for other uses, 4 stops or less contrast range.

  9. #9
    Ektagraphic's Avatar
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    Nothing today
    Helping to save analog photography one exposure at a time

  10. #10
    Iwagoshi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pupfish View Post
    If he's having someone else do these, without either dodging/burning or contrast masking the OP may be in for some contrast pain, alright.

    I find reds and yellows are not only beautiful on RA4 papers like Fuji Crystal Archive and Supra Endura, as well, but more accurately saturated. Magentas and especially purples are often garish on Ciba/Ilfochrome, often freakishly so from Velvia 50 originals. Exposures specifically tailored to Ciba/Ilfochrome would be a little flat for other uses, 4 stops or less contrast range.

    Perhaps it was the Kodachrome that I made the prints from, never made a Ciba from Velvia or any other E-6, never had an issue with any garish tints.
    Last edited by Iwagoshi; 05-12-2009 at 07:34 PM. Click to view previous post history.

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