man, im super stoked. in the last few years, photography has taken a few hits with various films, paper, and chemistry not being manufactured anymore. it makes me sad. and turns me into a hoarder. but to my surprise, right here in mid-february, i stumbled upon a christmas miracle. i just read the press release that ilford is making a cotton rag silver gelatine multigrade paper. its incredible too, because this is a result of an extensive R&D project – good to know that Ilford is still investing in tradition.
it’s sort of a nice full circle in the paper world. you see, paper used to be made of cotton linen rags back in the day. from the mid-15th century on, thats what everyone was using. it was good, strong, durable paper. books made from this paper are still today in great condition. the demise of paper, ironically enough, was the industrial revolution. a shortage of rags coupled with a demand for great amounts of paper due to widespread literacy forced the shiny new world to invent a way to use mechanical and chemical processes to make paper out of wood. its called wood pulp paper and books printed on this from around the 1850′s onwards are acidic and mostly embrittled. they suck, and i have to deal with them everyday at work. so, let’s give three cheers to Ilford for kickin’ it old school! now, let’s work on gettin back kodachrome…
**if anyone is really interested in paper – i mean, really really interested, check out Dard Hunter cause he was the man**
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