B&W for the 'effort challenged' (read 'lazy')

february 11, 2002

For all you Ansel Adams wannabes - the Eastman Kodak company has released chromagenic B&W (black and white) film for the masses. If you're not familiar with the term, chromagenic B&W film is processed using the very same chemistry as regular color print film. The striking Nike still ads are actually shot using this type of film, but until recently, this was largely the domain of professional and serious amateur photographers. I was surprised to find a good quantity of Kodak's commercial B&W sitting on the shelf over at the local Ritz Camera (at of all places, the 'Great Maul of the Bay'). Unlike Ilford's offering, Kodak uses an orange polyester base and so the local one hour shop will print true black and white (rather than with a purplish tinge).

The stuff isn't terribly expensive ('bout 3-4 dollars a roll) and processing is cheap and convenient (compared to traditional B&W which will set you back some $25 dollars a roll and will typically require a week or so).

If anyone's interested - I'll post some of my results with this stuff.