Quote Originally Posted by Photo Engineer
Yet, look at the dearth of workshops on silver gelatin and look at the lack in the number of those interested in it, when, OTOH almost all of us use it in-camera!

That seems to confound your argument to some extent and I cannot fully understand the situation out there. Things just don't add up completely. AgX is easy to make, repeatable, easy to coat and fast in speed. It will become a lost art if not learned well by some of the people out there.

I guess no one will truly miss it until it is gone.
It's denial, Ron. I see myself doing it -- seeing Foma doing well, Ilford and Fuji reaffirming their commitment to film, and it's easy to think this will all turn out to have been a bunch of overreaction, there'll still be one or two film companies making 4-5 emulsions in another 25 years, and that's the worst it'll get (after all, there's more money in artist's oil colors now than there ever was previously in history, right?).

And maybe that view is correct.

But maybe it's not.

Quite honestly, I don't have the money to pay for workshops in *anything*. I learned cyanotype by reading a bunch of stuff, buying a kit, and making some prints, but I still have trouble with it sometimes. Soon I hope to try recreating some of the work that led up to Cyanotype Rex -- which I can afford because it uses no silver, and for $20 I can get enough ferric ammonium citrate and potassium ferricyanide to make far more than the 20 8x10 prints the box specifies. Add to that the cost of silver nitrate, and I couldn't afford to make my own emulsion even if you came to my house and gave the workshop gratis.

I've finally started to accept that if photography goes much further along the path of scarcity and decreasing demand leading to loss of economies of scale, I won't be able to stay with it. I hate the thought of giving it up, even more so that of becoming a pixelographer. Most likely, if there in fact comes a day when I can't buy film at a price I can afford, I'll either settle for making in-camera cyanotypes using the high-speed methods and either contact printing or direct positive chemistry, or I'll dump my equipment to collectors (the kind who dust their cameras, rather than shoot them, even now while film is easy to get and not too expensive) and spend the proceeds on an easel, some brushes, canvases, and tubes of oils. That I can more or less afford, and it's not getting any more expensive as the years go by...