The Rundown #8

Harman Phoenix 200

🔗 Harman Phoenix – New Color Film!

“Like the mystical phoenix, this new colour film represents hope, rebirth and transformation.”

If you haven’t yet heard the announcement, Harman Photo, the owner of Ilford Photo, has released a brand new color film they’re calling Harman Phoenix 200! Boasting “high contrast and strong, visible grain”, this limited-edition, experimental film is made entirely in the UK.

One of the things that I’m really excited about with this film is the fact that Harman had the foresight to include a variety of scanner settings on the data sheet to help you get the best results out of Phoenix 200 when scanning it. I wish every film manufacturer would do that. Analogue Wonderland was an official test partner on this film and helped develop a lot of those scan settings, so be sure to check out their Harman Phoenix Learning Hub for insider tips on shooting and scanning Harman Phoenix.

I am fortunate enough to live in a city where my local camera store has the new film in stock, so Saturday morning I drove out to The Camera Store just as they opened and picked up two rolls. I’ll shoot and post my photos asap, but I just finished developing 19 rolls of color film and won’t mix up another batch of C-41 chemistry until I’ve shot 10-12 rolls.

🔗 JollyLook Instant Development Units

I have often shot Instax Mini in cameras that were never designed to hold instant film. Using card stock, you can create a simple insert mask that holds a single frame of Instax Mini and load it into the back of a medium format camera like a Holga or Mamiya C-series TLR. It’s a lot of fun and I’ve had some decent success doing it, but when every frame has to be loaded, unloaded, and developed separately in a film changing bag, it isn’t practical. Fortunately, JollyLook makes and sells instant film developing units for Instax Mini and Instax Square. I bought one of each and plan to build a couple instant cameras using some of my lesser-used lenses. I’ll share the results here when I’m done.

Orwo Film Has Finally Arrived

At last! My new Orwo film order has finally arrived! Back in June, I wrote about how Orwo had failed to fulfill pre-orders of their new Wolfen NC500 film while at the same time making it available to retailers. It was very frustrating, especially since Orwo also stopped responding to their customers. Imagine my surprise when 18 months after my initial order, my long-awaited film showed up on my doorstep!

And that’s not the only surprise: looking over the enclosed packing slip, I discovered something very curious. My film order was fulfilled by Freestyle. In itself, that’s not surprising. Freestyle is most likely acting as Orwo’s North American distributor. But what did surprise me was that on the form, next to the box that listed my original order date (June 2022), was a box that said “Required Ship Date: March 20, 2023” while at the bottom of the form was another box that said “Print Date: October 31, 2023”.

What gives? Why was my order not shipped to me on the required date? The film was already available on the retail market so Freestyle should have had the film in stock. It doesn’t make any sense, but whatever happened (and I’ll never know for sure), I don’t hold Freestyle responsible. There were many people waiting for their film orders (not just me) and Orwo has been incommunicado for a long time with no news or announcements. Not posting updates or responding to messages is a sure-fire way to alienate your customers. It’s okay to have delays in film production, but it’s not cool to avoid your customers in the process. I would have happily waited for my order if it weren’t for these shenanigans.

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