I have worked in a photolab for 14 years now and have seen many changes in our business. Its in a retail outlet, so the store helps us stay open. We still develop film (at a high cost) for the customer, but the bulk of the lab business is printing from digital prints. Here in Canada we do a lot of business printing orders compared to the US that does a fraction of our numbers. This has helped us stay open. Where in the USA you may print off low numbers of digital pictures per order, here in Canada we can at times do 10 times that much. We don't do much film at all these days, but still offer developing. We get more business from low end camera sales then photo developing. And we also do photogifts now which add to the sales. I don't know how many more years we have to stay open strictly as we are today, but I'm expecting at some point we'll shutter the Photolab business. And I'll be out looking for a new job. I keep my options open on that, but not planning on leaving just yet- unless a job comes available that I have interest in.
I shoot both digital and film today. I find film extremely expensive to develop compared to digital, so I use it for mainly important shoots or stuff I want slides or B&W for. I don't shoot C-41 anymore unless its 120 format.
Last edited by braxus; 10-01-2012 at 06:37 PM. Click to view previous post history.