Cinestill Films and the Resurgence of Analog Photography

Mar 18, 2016  By Luis Mora


Film is making a resurgence. Whether this is the final gasp of air or a new breath of life has yet to be determined.

While big names like Kodak and Fuji are cutting production of once iconic photographic mediums, and labs across the country are closing their doors or eliminating film processing altogether (have you been to a drug store lately?), an indie movement of mini-labs and film companies is sprouting out of the ashes. One such company is CineStill.

Cinema film stock has been used in 35mm cameras since the birth of the portable 35mm camera. Around the turn of the century, Oskar Barnack, head of R&D at Leitz, wanted to make a portable camera that used 35mm cinema film and that was capable of producing high quality negatives for enlargement. And so in 1913 the Leica (Leitz Camera) was born.

100 years later, with that same spirit, The Brothers Wright, Founders of Cinestill Inc. decided to bring color cinema stock into the household. “Original beta testing for this newly  available film began in late 2012, but the concept and original development tests began years before, when we first started shooting the amazing Kodak Vision 3 500T 5219 for our own photography… Compelled by our love for analog photography, and never one to back down from a challenge, we came to the conclusion that we had to find a way to make it usable in standard 135 canisters with standard developing.”

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