or Connect
AppleInsider › Forums › General › General Discussion › Photography pioneer Kodak files for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Photography pioneer Kodak files for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection

post #1 of 55
Thread Starter 
Unable to maintain a steady supply of money from its digital imaging patents, storied photography pioneer Eastman Kodak announced late Wednesday that it is filing for chapter 11 business reorganization and bankruptcy protection.

Kodak said in a press release (via All Things D) that it has submitted its petition with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York. Citigroup has agreed to loan the ailing company $950 million to help it shore up capital ahead of the proceedings, though the debtor-in-possession credit facility is subject to court approval.

The 120-year-old photography company said that it "believes that it has sufficient liquidity to operate its business during chapter 11, and to continue the flow of goods and services to its customers in the ordinary course." Employee wages and benefits will still be paid and "customer programs" will continue, according to the release.

Dominic DiNapooli, Vice Chairman of FTI Consulting, has been appointed Chief Restructuring Officer to see Kodak through the reorganization. The company expects to complete its U.S.-based restructuring during 2013. Subsidiaries outside of the U.S. are not subject to proceedings, the release revealed.

“Kodak is taking a significant step toward enabling our enterprise to complete its transformation,” said CEO Antonio Perez. “At the same time as we have created our digital business, we have also already effectively exited certain traditional operations, closing 13 manufacturing plants and 130 processing labs, and reducing our workforce by 47,000 since 2003. Now we must complete the transformation by further addressing our cost structure and effectively monetizing non-core IP assets. We look forward to working with our stakeholders to emerge a lean, world-class, digital imaging and materials science company.”

Perez added that the decision to pursue chapter 11 was a unanimous decision from the company's board of directors and senior management team. According to him, they believe it is a "necessary step and the right thing to do for the future of Kodak."

“Chapter 11 gives us the best opportunities to maximize the value in two critical parts of our technology portfolio: our digital capture patents, which are essential for a wide range of mobile and other consumer electronic devices that capture digital images and have generated over $3 billion of licensing revenues since 2003; and our breakthrough printing and deposition technologies, which give Kodak a competitive advantage in our growing digital businesses,” he continued.

As its bread-and-butter film business disintegrated in recent years, Kodak proved unable to successfully make the leap into the digital era. The company burned through a significant portion of its cash reserves in 2011. Early this month, reports suggested that Kodak was readying a bankruptcy filing after a last-ditch effort to sell off some of its patents fell through. Those patents are expected to now be sold off on auction while Kodak is under bankruptcy protection.

Perez, who headed up HP's printer group before switching to Kodak, had desperately tried to move Kodak into the printing business, but the company failed to gain much traction in the industry.

Kodak then turned to patent licensing to generate income. It succeeded in wringing close to $1 billion dollars from Samsung and LG over an image preview patent and then set its sights on Apple by filing a lawsuit against the iPhone maker with the International Trade Commission. Perez had said that "a lot of money, big money" was at stake in its case against Apple.

Apple, however, put up a fight, winning a preliminary victory early last year. Last December, the ITC announced that it had pushed back the date for a final decision on the case to September 2012. The delay came as a significant blow to Kodak, as some pundits predicted that it might not last until then.

Faced with the prospect of losing against Apple, Kodak then looked to sell off its collection of digital imaging patents in hopes of earning a lump sum of cash instead of royalty payments, but it was unable to close a deal.

Kodak did, however, get off a parting shot at Samsung on Wednesday when it sued the Korean electronics maker just hours before declaring bankruptcy.
post #2 of 55

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply
post #3 of 55
I recently had some photos printed at Pro Photo Supply in Portland, Or. They have a Kodak printer that uses a chemical process with the image generated by lasers. I have to say - thanks to the great efforts of the staff - I came out with absolutely stunning prints (11" x 17"), Particularly beautiful were the shots of black friends in Colombia. The dark skin tones are so subtly shaded and warm.

As a long time photographer I would be saddened if Kodak were to fail to reorganize itself. It would be a real tragedy.

For now: Thank you Kodak for this and many, many more tools for my art.
post #4 of 55
Hey, Kodak already got rid of one of their best products: Kodachrome. Now that was a spectacular product: Kodachrome 25.

Most of Kodak's current value is in the rapidly declining value of its digital photography portfolio. Kodak really hasn't innovated for years. Kodak is bringing ancient things to the table. Things like the Bayer array (now being actively replaced by newer designs) or the PhotoCD (haven't seen/heard of an operational Kodak PIW for years).
post #5 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by cvaldes1831 View Post

Hey, Kodak already got rid of one of their best products: Kodachrome.

Now that was a spectacular product: Kodachrome 25.

I never knew how to pronounce that. Koda-chrome, Kodac-HHA-rome

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply

"The real haunted empire?  It's the New York Times." ~SockRolid

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

Reply
post #6 of 55
Remember this day, gentlemen: the beginning of the end of film.

Film may have been on the endangered species list a long time ago, but one of the big three manufacturers has failed to buoy analog with its digital ingenuity. Fuji and Agfa are somehow still alive, god knows why, but the biggest is about to be bought out by a Chinese firm and morphed into a shell of itself. Just watch. It's a sad, sad day.
post #7 of 55
SO what happened? Were the Kodak board and the CEO really old old people? Were they so out of touch that they could not even compete and lead the industry? Are they all 90 year old men with a backwards attitude? Really Kodak created the first DSLR camera. The Nikon (Kodak) DCS 100. WHy didn't they work on this technology? What the hell went wrong?
An Apple man since 1977
Reply
An Apple man since 1977
Reply
post #8 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by robogobo View Post

Remember this day, gentlemen: the beginning of the end of film.

Film may have been on the endangered species list a long time ago, but one of the big three manufacturers has failed to buoy analog with its digital ingenuity. Fuji and Agfa are somehow still alive, god knows why, but the biggest is about to be bought out by a Chinese firm and morphed into a shell of itself. Just watch. It's a sad, sad day.

Really?

Did you mourn this much when they put a bullet in 8-track tapes?

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
Reply

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
Reply
post #9 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by robogobo View Post

Remember this day, gentlemen: the beginning of the end of film.

Film may have been on the endangered species list a long time ago, but one of the big three manufacturers has failed to buoy analog with its digital ingenuity. Fuji and Agfa are somehow still alive, god knows why, but the biggest is about to be bought out by a Chinese firm and morphed into a shell of itself. Just watch. It's a sad, sad day.

Really? And here I was thinking film was going to make a comeback in 2012 and overtake digital. This is utterly shocking news.

Seriously, not sure if I'm so sad. Not like nobody could see this coming years ago. Was it also a sad day when casette tapes, VHS, and CRT TVs died off? It's called progress.
post #10 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

I never knew how to pronounce that. Koda-chrome, Kodac-HHA-rome

Not sure if it matters much anymore.

Anyhow, I think there was an old song about this. You can refer to that, if you feel like being geriatric about this.
post #11 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

Really?

Did you mourn this much when they put a bullet in 8-track tapes?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Slurpy View Post

Really? And here I was thinking film was going to make a comeback in 2012 and overtake digital. This is utterly shocking news.

Seriously, not sure if I'm so sad. Not like nobody could see this coming years ago. Was it also a sad day when casette tapes, VHS, and CRT TVs died off? It's called progress.

I'm sure if I had spent more than half my life and poured so much energy into perfecting my technique with 8track (horrible metaphor, btw- 8track had neither the quality nor the longevity and dominance that film had, but anyway), I'd mourn it just the same.

Have some respect, boys. Kodak made photography. Turn down your internet sarcasm for a moment and recognize that a king is dying.
post #12 of 55
Wow, a bit unexpected.

The film business was going down the drain, the few enthusiasts that still use it are not enough.
But as they are also making big sensors for middle format cameras and probably also for medical and research companis, thought that would bring enough cash to keep them afloat.
post #13 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


Quite the historic moment for sure.
Been using Apple since Apple ][ - Long on AAPL so biased
nMac Pro 6 Core, MacBookPro i7, MacBookPro i5, iPhones 5 and 5s, iPad Air, 2013 Mac mini, SE30, IIFx, Towers; G4 & G3.
Reply
Been using Apple since Apple ][ - Long on AAPL so biased
nMac Pro 6 Core, MacBookPro i7, MacBookPro i5, iPhones 5 and 5s, iPad Air, 2013 Mac mini, SE30, IIFx, Towers; G4 & G3.
Reply
post #14 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by robogobo View Post

Remember this day, gentlemen: the beginning of the end of film.

Film may have been on the endangered species list a long time ago, but one of the big three manufacturers has failed to buoy analog with its digital ingenuity. Fuji and Agfa are somehow still alive, god knows why, but the biggest is about to be bought out by a Chinese firm and morphed into a shell of itself. Just watch. It's a sad, sad day.

I remember playing with an early professional digital camera in the early 1990s and that was when I thought 'this is the beginning of the end of film.' It was 640 x 480 pixels and used a small floppy that had an adapter case to insert in a 3.5 floppy drive. It was SLR and I think it was Sony I think ... my memory is blurry but it cost me about $3,000 including the amazing lens. I bought it on the floor of the MacWorld Show in SF from the booth.
Been using Apple since Apple ][ - Long on AAPL so biased
nMac Pro 6 Core, MacBookPro i7, MacBookPro i5, iPhones 5 and 5s, iPad Air, 2013 Mac mini, SE30, IIFx, Towers; G4 & G3.
Reply
Been using Apple since Apple ][ - Long on AAPL so biased
nMac Pro 6 Core, MacBookPro i7, MacBookPro i5, iPhones 5 and 5s, iPad Air, 2013 Mac mini, SE30, IIFx, Towers; G4 & G3.
Reply
post #15 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by robogobo View Post

Have some respect, boys. Kodak made photography. Turn down your internet sarcasm for a moment and recognize that a king is dying.

QFT Kodak made photography availible to the rest of the public. 35mm film enable images from around the world. Before that you have to carry everything on a mule, literally.

Steve Sasson invented the digital camera at Kodak.


I have always wonder how Kodak was keeping it self a float over the years. Its still a shock.
post #16 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by robogobo View Post

Remember this day, gentlemen: the beginning of the end of film.

Film may have been on the endangered species list a long time ago, but one of the big three manufacturers has failed to buoy analog with its digital ingenuity. Fuji and Agfa are somehow still alive, god knows why, but the biggest is about to be bought out by a Chinese firm and morphed into a shell of itself. Just watch. It's a sad, sad day.

Fujifilm are in all kinda of business
http://www.fujifilmbeauty.com.hk/pro...ft&listall=yes
post #17 of 55
Quote:

You pressed a button here, now who's going to do the rest?
"Fibonacci: As easy as 1, 1, 2, 3..."
Reply
"Fibonacci: As easy as 1, 1, 2, 3..."
Reply
post #18 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by robogobo View Post

Remember this day, gentlemen: the beginning of the end of film.

Film may have been on the endangered species list a long time ago, but one of the big three manufacturers has failed to buoy analog with its digital ingenuity. Fuji and Agfa are somehow still alive, god knows why, but the biggest is about to be bought out by a Chinese firm and morphed into a shell of itself. Just watch. It's a sad, sad day.


Film lost out years ago in newspapers to direct-to-plate imaging. Fuji and Agfa supply the newspaper printing industry with aluminium printing plates. That's a big part of their business these days.. albeit a slowly shrinking one.


Agfa have had no consumer film business for years - they are very successful in the newspaper Computer-To-Plate and pre-press workflow areas however, also medical imaging systems.
Their main competitor for printing plates is Fuji.

So Fuji is about to be bought out you say? link?

I also loved my kodak slide film... big slide-scanning project on the go...!

RIP Kodak.
post #19 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmmx View Post

I recently had some photos printed at Pro Photo Supply in Portland, Or. They have a Kodak printer that uses a chemical process with the image generated by lasers. I have to say - thanks to the great efforts of the staff - I came out with absolutely stunning prints (11" x 17"), Particularly beautiful were the shots of black friends in Colombia. The dark skin tones are so subtly shaded and warm.

As a long time photographer I would be saddened if Kodak were to fail to reorganize itself. It would be a real tragedy.

For now: Thank you Kodak for this and many, many more tools for my art.

Pioneers and innovators since the year dot. Here's a test of a Kodachrome two color process in 1922. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J_RTnd3Smy8 a treasure from the past.
post #20 of 55
It is truly a sad day for all photographers. So many of us came through the School of Photography at RIT, and I can't even begin to list all of the help Kodak has given to RIT from the very beginning of the Mechanics Institute when Kodak gave over $600K as a donation. In todays money, I can't even guess what that would be. I can only hope that something will happen to turn them around before it's too late. Todays digital "photographers" have no idea how important Kodak has been to the creative world. For so many years many galleries and museums wouldn't have photographs hanging up because they could be "manipulated" and were copies. Ansel Adams changed some of that, and he also opened up the worlds eyes to just how beautiful the west really was. I'm not sure but I would bet he used some kind of Kodak film. Maybe Tri-X? Anyway, I just hope they can be saved. Rochester needs them and so does the world.
post #21 of 55
I'm afraid the medium and low end camera days are numbered. Phone cameras are going to eat up this market.
post #22 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by enzos View Post

Pioneers and innovators since the year dot. Here's a test of a Kodachrome two color process in 1922. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J_RTnd3Smy8 a treasure from the past.

Amazing quality... Looking at those girls and realizing that this was before the invention of hair dryers, talking movies, and modern brassieres.
"...The calm is on the water and part of us would linger by the shore, For ships are safe in harbor, but that's not what ships are for."
- Michael Lille -
Reply
"...The calm is on the water and part of us would linger by the shore, For ships are safe in harbor, but that's not what ships are for."
- Michael Lille -
Reply
post #23 of 55
They like Apple had the ability to change or create change in the world of photography. They were in the forefront for many years, and by not putting their balls on the chopping block and going with the digital age, they shot themselves in the foot.

How much this could have changed or be different nobody will ever know, but I for one feel that many of these changes over the last 10 or more years, gave Kodak plenty of time to join the masses. But hey, what do I know not enough for anyone to care or listen.

Skip
post #24 of 55
What a shame...they failed to adapt and transform their core business to digital age. They may re-emerge in a few years and still with little to show for. It is another classic management failure in the making for years.
post #25 of 55
Another company completely f***** up by former CEO Patricia Russo, they never recovered since then. Another company led not too long ago by Patricia Russo: Alcatel-Lucent. They're also in trouble, shocking...
post #26 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


Sad - the Great Yellow Father is near death. Another example of the Big not adapting to the Now. Lousy management. As said in the song - Please don't take my Kodachrome away - but they did.
post #27 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slurpy View Post

Really? And here I was thinking film was going to make a comeback in 2012 and overtake digital. This is utterly shocking news.

Seriously, not sure if I'm so sad. Not like nobody could see this coming years ago. Was it also a sad day when casette tapes, VHS, and CRT TVs died off? It's called progress.

Every day the people on this forum show their age.
post #28 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by TKu View Post

Wow, a bit unexpected.

The film business was going down the drain, the few enthusiasts that still use it are not enough.
But as they are also making big sensors for middle format cameras and probably also for medical and research companis, thought that would bring enough cash to keep them afloat.

Actually, the few enthusiasts who still use film probably ARE enough for a film business to succeed.

The problem is that Kodak never seemed to grasp the idea that it was going to change from a high volume low cost business to a low volume high cost niche. Had they restructured years ago, the specialty film business would probably be profitable - albeit at a much smaller size than the current size of their film business. A few hundred employees instead of tens of thousands, for example.

And, with proper leadership, Kodak would have been leading the way into digital rather than being a 'bit' player.
"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
Reply
"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
Reply
post #29 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by BryantR View Post

What is the leadership saying regarding this? Do they have an excuse?

They 'didn't see it coming' more than likely!
Been using Apple since Apple ][ - Long on AAPL so biased
nMac Pro 6 Core, MacBookPro i7, MacBookPro i5, iPhones 5 and 5s, iPad Air, 2013 Mac mini, SE30, IIFx, Towers; G4 & G3.
Reply
Been using Apple since Apple ][ - Long on AAPL so biased
nMac Pro 6 Core, MacBookPro i7, MacBookPro i5, iPhones 5 and 5s, iPad Air, 2013 Mac mini, SE30, IIFx, Towers; G4 & G3.
Reply
post #30 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

Really?

Did you mourn this much when they put a bullet in 8-track tapes?

Poor analogy. 8-Track was simply one of many media.

Film, for over 100 years was the ONLY practical media for preserving memories - available to every family.

I'm sure you are too young to realize, but for over 100 years the only way to capture memories, was through film. Museaums are full of the artistic expression that used to be only available through years of experience working with film - and Kodak was the king.

When homes were destroyed by fires or floods, people risked their lives rescuing family members, pets and the most cherished possessions they had, photo albums. True photography is an art form that has been killed by technology, and thousands of lives were influenced by this. If you dig through almost any home, somewhere in the house is likely a shoebox full of memories - taken on Kodak film, and likely printed on Kodak paper.

A little respect for a company that is passing, that harmed no one - yet brought happiness and preserved memories for generations isn't that much to ask.
post #31 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hodar View Post

I'm sure you are too young to realize

Careful.

Quote:
True photography is an art form that has been killed by technology,

That's untrue.

Originally posted by Marvin

Even if [the 5.5” iPhone exists], it doesn’t deserve to.
Reply

Originally posted by Marvin

Even if [the 5.5” iPhone exists], it doesn’t deserve to.
Reply
post #32 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by tylerk36 View Post

SO what happened? Were the Kodak board and the CEO really old old people? Were they so out of touch that they could not even compete and lead the industry? Are they all 90 year old men with a backwards attitude? Really Kodak created the first DSLR camera. The Nikon (Kodak) DCS 100. WHy didn't they work on this technology? What the hell went wrong?

IMHO, I believe Kodak leadership was so arrogant at the superiority of film over the early digital photography; they believed that digtal photography would "never" over-take film. While they were correct, in the early digital photography quality (pixelated, poor color quality) - the fact that they could not imagine the digital age coming quickly, should serve as a harsh reminder to other companies. Kodak's arrogance killed them.

This is where I'm fascinated by Westinghouse. Did you know that in the 1800's Westinghouse was a rendering plant, that made candles? Their claim to fame was that their candles were 'flicker-free'; and then the lighbulb was invented. Instead of concentrating on making better candles - Westinghouse managment had the forsight to embrace the new technology, and quickly made a name for themselves as a premier supplier of lighting products. Westinghouse today, makes thousands of products, each embracing technology - and Westinghouse is extremely rare in this accomplishement. Kodak had their "Westinghouse" moment - and failed to adapt, and like the dinosaurs - is facing extinction.
post #33 of 55
I did say the lawsuit stuff would not hold outside of going straight for bankruptcy or wholesale selling off.

From Kodak Moments to... rock bottom. Welcome to the digital age, for better or worse.
post #34 of 55
Quote:
Re: Tallest Ski
"True photography is an art form that has been killed by technology, "

Your reply: "That's untrue."

Part of what made the 'great' photographers was not only their skill in using photography as an art form, but the fact that the pictures they took were "real" and not photoshopped. This skill took years, in some cases lifetimes to master. Artists like Ansel Adams took their pictures, at great personal risk, in adverse conditions - and got it 'right' the first time. They didn't know if they got their picture 'right' until they got to the development lab. This meant that for every 'great shot' they got, there were several opportuntities that were lost forever. IMHO, one of the trademarks of good art is that you can't mass-produce it. Sure, you can mass-produce the result; but you can't mass produce the creation.

With digital photography - you can take 100's of photo's of any given moment; you can salvage or create any variation you want with software. Literally, anyone can mass produce almost any shot - as the art learned by the masters has been compressed into a simple filter that anyone can use. Thus, what was once an artform that demanded a thorough understanding of focal length, exposure, aperature settings, focal lenghts of lens and various development techniques - has all been boiled down to clicking on a button.

Thus, I submit that you are mistaken - we have removed the 'artistic' element from photography and replaced it with commerially available 'creation' filters that anyone with the interest, can master within hours.
post #35 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hodar View Post

Poor analogy. 8-Track was simply one of many media.

Film, for over 100 years was the ONLY practical media for preserving memories - available to every family.

I'm sure you are too young to realize, but for over 100 years the only way to capture memories, was through film. Museaums are full of the artistic expression that used to be only available through years of experience working with film - and Kodak was the king.

When homes were destroyed by fires or floods, people risked their lives rescuing family members, pets and the most cherished possessions they had, photo albums. True photography is an art form that has been killed by technology, and thousands of lives were influenced by this. If you dig through almost any home, somewhere in the house is likely a shoebox full of memories - taken on Kodak film, and likely printed on Kodak paper.

A little respect for a company that is passing, that harmed no one - yet brought happiness and preserved memories for generations isn't that much to ask.

I respect film photography very deeply. I'm 33 but of course grew up with Kodak and Fuji, dabbled in SLRs when 12 years old.

You have a point about technology, but such is change. You must remember, for a long time even in the 1980's and 1990's, film photography was considered second to drawing and painting. Let alone 100 years ago when people thought your soul would be lost when a photo was taken of you.
post #36 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hodar View Post

Thus, I submit that you are mistaken - we have removed the 'artistic' element from photography and replaced it with commerially available 'creation' filters that anyone with the interest, can master within hours.

On the point of Photoshop and Filters, anyone can learn it within hours, but digital art and interactive media will take many years to master. Even then, trends will have moved on ~ but that's always been the case for commercial art, right?

That's why instead of technology being the differentiator fine art and commercial art is a more relevant line to draw.

If you look at the say "Dutch Masters etc" paintings, they are no doubt superb, but that's actually commercial art in some sense because that was the "trend" everyone was into and it was done for money. Several artists mastered that style of painting but then broke out of that to create new ground. That's fine art.

So I'm fine if somebody says, that's commercial, it's rubbish. But to say that because it's only because they used technology, then that might be a bit harsh.

There is average Photoshop stuff and then there is some amazing stuff that you just stand back and go, well, that's beautiful. We will never have another Ansel Adams capture, or another Da Vinci drawing... But that's what history is for, not necessarily just art. Art is creation, it's living, breathing, ongoing.

Some of the CSS stuff being done now for web pages, and Wordpress templates, iOS apps, there's some crazy shit going on that's pretty impressive taking things to a new level. They've taken command-line and text-browsing in 15 years to a whole new visual language.

I know what you say about film, color grading film for example will die out very soon... I saw Sherlock Holmes 2 in digital projection and you can obviously tell like most modern movies the color grading is all done digitally, not like say, Three Kings from 10+ years ago. There's some color tricks they use that clearly would never be possible even with the best film stock and best color grader in the world. But they are creating a new art form...

We cannot hold on too much to the past because our lives should be defined and influenced by more important things.

I wish I could pause in a moment, I wish I could listen to everything in analog. I wish 3D games didn't have so "3D" looking human characters. I wish I could hold original Da Vinci stuff in my hands. But the world is too vast, too wide, and too old to embrace everything.

Imagine the time when art went from medieval side-shot paintings to more realistic "3D" paintings (Renaissance period?). That must have been quite a transition.

Even in my mind I can't keep track of all this history, art history, computer history, technology and innovation spanning thousands of years of human civilisation.

We can cluck our tongues and shake our heads, just as I do with what I consider garbage pop music of the past five years, but I still like Trance and Progressive and they have created new impressive stuff and remixed the "oldies" of Trance in nice ways.
post #37 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hodar View Post

Part of what made the 'great' photographers was not only their skill in using photography as an art form, but the fact that the pictures they took were "real" and not photoshopped. This skill took years, in some cases lifetimes to master. Artists like Ansel Adams took their pictures, at great personal risk, in adverse conditions - and got it 'right' the first time. They didn't know if they got their picture 'right' until they got to the development lab. This meant that for every 'great shot' they got, there were several opportuntities that were lost forever. IMHO, one of the trademarks of good art is that you can't mass-produce it. Sure, you can mass-produce the result; but you can't mass produce the creation.

With digital photography - you can take 100's of photo's of any given moment; you can salvage or create any variation you want with software. Literally, anyone can mass produce almost any shot - as the art learned by the masters has been compressed into a simple filter that anyone can use. Thus, what was once an artform that demanded a thorough understanding of focal length, exposure, aperature settings, focal lenghts of lens and various development techniques - has all been boiled down to clicking on a button.

Thus, I submit that you are mistaken - we have removed the 'artistic' element from photography and replaced it with commerially available 'creation' filters that anyone with the interest, can master within hours.

I understand and respect your point, I just think it's wrong.

I wish I didn't have to have this disclaimer, but (you'll see)

I shoot both digital and film now. My dad just handed down to me his Nikon camera that he bought in Tokyo in 1971. Works like the day out of the box, save for the battery for the built-in light meter (we're trying to get that fixed). It's a great camera with an even better lens that he got for much cheaper than it's worth now. I absolutely love the nuances that it affords in taking pictures and I'm learning how to use it properly as quickly as I can.

I also shoot digital. I have this cheap-o point and shoot Nikon (10MP, pathetic lens, no corrections, no manual anything, horrible press-to-shutter delay, the usual) that I bought before a college semester in Ireland. I REALLY want a real digital camera. (that's my disclaimer. I have a trash digital camera that doesn't afford me the same level of control as a real one) One with the same level of control as my (dad's, now mine) traditional one. But anyway, I shoot digital, too. Ever since I got it, I don't modify anything, but that's me. I understand that many people do, but to me, modifying the original picture just feels wrong.

It's probably because my dad raised me exactly how you've said in your post. He adored all the famous photographers, and he himself has taken some pictures that would give them a run for their money. He has an extraordinary mindset about what makes a photograph. It's not a scene. Anyone can shoot a scene. Tens of billions of photos taken by teenagers with point and shoots every day are 'scenes'. It's finding the beauty in a thing that gives photography its purpose, he says. Yeah, you can look at a landscape. That's not interesting. Zoom in. Zoom in all the way. Find something interesting within it. Find a subset, something that no one else will ever see or that they'd otherwise pass by, get your settings, and snap it. That's the beauty of it.

All I'm saying is that there are digital artists who keep the traditions of film alive. Sure we have viewfinders now. That doesn't mean you can instantly take, not "good" pictures, but RIGHT pictures. That doesn't mean the ART of photography is dead.

Originally posted by Marvin

Even if [the 5.5” iPhone exists], it doesn’t deserve to.
Reply

Originally posted by Marvin

Even if [the 5.5” iPhone exists], it doesn’t deserve to.
Reply
post #38 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

Actually, the few enthusiasts who still use film probably ARE enough for a film business to succeed.

The problem is that Kodak never seemed to grasp the idea that it was going to change from a high volume low cost business to a low volume high cost niche. Had they restructured years ago, the specialty film business would probably be profitable - albeit at a much smaller size than the current size of their film business. A few hundred employees instead of tens of thousands, for example.

And, with proper leadership, Kodak would have been leading the way into digital rather than being a 'bit' player.

Correct.

Fuji Photo was able to make the adjustment and they are thriving quite well. They are constantly tweaking their business and after years of rolling out a bunch of entry-level crummy cameras of limited distinction, they have found a niche in designing and selling high-end point-and-shoot cameras like the X100.

Kodak missed that opportunity.
post #39 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hodar View Post

When homes were destroyed by fires or floods, people risked their lives rescuing family members, pets and the most cherished possessions they had, photo albums. True photography is an art form that has been killed by technology, and thousands of lives were influenced by this. If you dig through almost any home, somewhere in the house is likely a shoebox full of memories - taken on Kodak film, and likely printed on Kodak paper.

Really? Maybe technology has diluted photography as an art form, but there's no way it's been killed. If anything, it's more accessible. Have you seen the work of professional photographers this millennium? The photographer we hired for our recent wedding took stunning pictures, and his portfolio includes tons of amazing pictures of cultures, landscapes and architecture from around the world. And what did it cost to hire him? Less than my parents paid for their photographer 25 years ago! Counting inflation, that's a huge difference. And it's not like he's getting shafted either, for the work he's putting in, his $/hour rate is more than fair. It's just the effort and costs behind the scenes has dropped tremendously.

Family photos of old are no more art than a picture of friends posted to Facebook today. The memories are just as precious. The only difference is you don't have to risk your life to save them anymore. Between the cloud and $0.10 CDs, offsite backups are so cheap there's no excuse not to do them. It's not like you have to pay for a second copy of every single print anymore. If anything, technology has made the memories part of photography even better. You don't waste money on film/prints for inept mistakes that we all inevitably make. You can instantly share the memories with all those involved for free. You can save way more memories since you're not paying for each photo. Most importantly, they're now easier to relive. Before you'd have to sit down and go through a photo album. Now you still can, but you also have digital picture frames, screensavers on an AppleTV while playing music, etc that makes the memories that much more accessible. I can't tell you the number of times an old photo that came up randomly at my parents house sparked a conversation reminiscing about the old days.

And yes, losing Kodak is sad and they deserve respect. But in the end, they did it to themselves. Photography went a new, amazing, direction, and they were too slow or short sighted to keep their position as market leader.
post #40 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by enzos View Post

Pioneers and innovators since the year dot. Here's a test of a Kodachrome two color process in 1922. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J_RTnd3Smy8 a treasure from the past.

Bly me! Amazing quality; thanks for sharing! A crying shame Kodak is going down/away. One of not that many companies who truly go to the extreme to create the best. Like Apple and the lot.
"Fibonacci: As easy as 1, 1, 2, 3..."
Reply
"Fibonacci: As easy as 1, 1, 2, 3..."
Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: General Discussion
AppleInsider › Forums › General › General Discussion › Photography pioneer Kodak files for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection