back to film??

  chiquita 21:33 23 Jun 2005

In the city and business section of the Daily Express Wednesday 22nd June, the Chairman of Photo-Me said " People started out by printing at home but they now realise it is very expensive and the pictures will fade after 10 years. The pictures from our kiosks will last 100 years and they are cheaper"
If what this gent says is true, he must have some pretty good paper and is there anyone out there who can tell me where I can get some?
Happy printing :-) Chiquita.

  Forum Editor 08:04 24 Jun 2005

is fraught with inconsistencies and wildly speculative claims. I've heard it claimed that some combinations of ink and paper will provide prints that will last 100 years without showing any significant colour shift. If you use heavyweight, high-quality fine-art papers and archival inks from someone like Lyson, and the best Epson or HP printer technology you will stand a good chance of achieving this kind of standard.

Normal photo-lab prints will certainly last longer than those produced on the average home printer, but 100 years?............Hmmmm.

  Kate B 10:40 24 Jun 2005

But hey, the beauty of digital is that if your print fades you can always print another one ...

  wiz-king 10:57 24 Jun 2005

Do you really believe that in say 20 years time you will still have the same camera cards or HDD that you have now? By then our present PCs will only be fit for a museum - even your new toy - and we will have holo-cubs or something similar, and be searching round for an adapter so that we can plug in and run our old disks.

  Forum Editor 11:09 24 Jun 2005

Precisely - provided the digital storage media is still OK in say, 25 years (or even 10 years).

And here we go again......

That's the trouble with modern technology, it provides us with everything except permanence. I spent last week and some of this week in Italy, and in Venice this business of permanence struck home forcibly. There I was, looking at carvings on an 800 year-old building, and realising that - with care - they'll probably last another 800 years at least. The digital images I took may look stunning now, but in twenty years time the prints may have faded and the CD I've written may have degraded beyond repair.

Does it matter? Probably not, but images of people are very important sometimes. One thing we can do now is record images of family members and loved ones many times - our children's early years can be there for their children to see - provided we can use materials which are up to it.

  Pooke 12:29 24 Jun 2005

So what do you do with family pics? I never really thought about lifespans of prints etc. Having 2 young children now, one at 3yr and the other at 16 months, I'd like to keep records of their childhood to show them when they're older, to embarrass them actually

I have been making photo cds of events like birthday parties and printing photos from the PC. I also keep backup multi-session cds that I keep adding to.

Would it better to take my xd card to a shop and let them print them or should I buy a good quality film camera?

  Indigo 1 13:08 24 Jun 2005

In my opinion, even compact 35mm cameras (with decent lenses) can give better results than mid-range digitals and are very cheap now.

I was looking through some old photos recently taken with various cameras from 110 to 35mm and comparing the results with some of my recent efforts with a mid-range Canon digital and the difference is astounding. Even my old Minolta 110 with zoom lens and manual settings gave better results and the negatives will last much longer than most CD copies.

For quick snapshots and ease of use and the ability to post pics on the web or send via email seconds after shooting, there is nothing better than digital.

  Kate B 14:04 24 Jun 2005

The permanence thing is interesting - so long as we're pretty good about backups across various storage solutions (online, external hdds, cd/dvd etc) I believe personal digital archives are better than hard copies.

By that I mean I have a box under my bed of dog-eared fading photographs (yes, traditional prints fade, too) and by and large I can't remember more than vaguely who the people are and when they were taken.

Even if you never caption digital photographs, at least the camera and the PC date-stamp them, giving you a reasonable idea of when they were taken.

However, my family is also incredibly lucky to have an archive of family photographs gathered by my grandmother of pictures mostly captioned and dated: thus I know what my great-great-great grandmother looked like.

The key thing really is to caption and date material, whether it's digital or hard copy.

  €dstowe 14:38 24 Jun 2005

Think of the pictures you take. It is extremely rare that the average happy snapper takes any picture of any real merit or interest to anyone other than themself. Even to the picture taker, the memory evoked by the average photo is lost after quite a short time so why the interest in archival permanence?

We live in a throwaway society overloaded with information. Most of our memories are chucked out with the same rapidity as the wrappers on last night's chinese takeaway - and have just as much importance to us.

Enjoy the cheap pictures for what they are now and in a few years. In your dotage you most likely won't be able to recall the events leading to them as your brain will be suffering from overload.

  John-259217 14:57 24 Jun 2005

The issue of permanence, as Kate B says, is an interesting one.

Film has been around a lot longer so I suppose people know what to expect, but I`d imagine even modern well stored negatives must suffer a certain amount of degradation over time.

Looking at the subject from a different angle how many people would get duplicate prints for relatives when they get a film developed? Maybe one or two "special" pictures but rarely whole films I would have thought.

Now with digital it`s a different matter. I know plenty of people who routinely knock up half a dozen cd`s with the pics of little Timmy`s xyz party/first tooth/<insert as appropriate> then mail them all over the place.

This effectively provides distributed backup of their albums should they ever be unfortunate enough to suffer a catastrophic event, such as the recent floods that hit Yorkshire for example.

If your extreeeeeemely paranoid perhaps shooting with a film camera then having a cd made, then duplicating it, then making multiple prints stored in different places , then uploading the images to a web hosting service....... oh dear the caffeine must be getting to me 8-))

  €dstowe 15:09 24 Jun 2005

As a sequel to your events, n73john, each recipient puts the pictures/disk in a box/album/case/web host never to look at them again.

As a student, I worked at a photofinishers during a vacation. There were many thousands of pictures passing through every day. Many thousands of them were alost identical boring beach scenes, could have been anywhere; scenic mountain views, could have been anywhere; little Timmy/Veronica's (substitute any name you want) first party, first tooth, first vomit, could have been anyone.

I often thought that if I had swapped some of these pictures around into different folders, would anyone ever have noticed?

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