Following our purpose to support the emerging crowdfunding initiatives related to alternative photography, as we did before with the Portrait Machine Project book funding, we have now become backers of the interesting project led by innovator and product manufacturer Bob Crowley, the New55 Film Project.
As it's been happening during the last years with the digital photography booming, the main companies dedicated to analog photographic supplies have successively announced their film production cease, as Polaroid did in February 2008. One of those films was Polaroid Type 55. A black-and-white peel-apart film with a positive print and a negative image used with large format cameras. Type 55 negatives were fine grained, had a long tonal range and very high resolution. They were useful for making large prints without losing quality, especially in alternative processes such as cyanotype and Van Dyke brown.
Despite of the bad news for photography's side B lovers, several artists and groups supporting instant and film photography proved the virtues of these photographic materials showing they don't belong to the past, not only for their creative manipulation possibilities but also for their result's quality. Film is still the preferred means for many professional and amateur photographers around the world.
In November 2010, a group called New55project, announced their goal to produce a new, very high quality instant 4x5 negative material to replace the no-longer-in-production Polaroid Type 55 instant film. By now, they have demonstrated their own Positive-Negative film system with spectacular results as the photographs below among many other beautiful artwork using 4x5 instant film from the New55Project's website gallery section. The final product if offered for sale to the public will be able to produce an instant negative using certain conventional 4x5 black-and-white sheet films. The project was launched on Kickstarter on March 2014 with Bob Crowley's new film video presentation and there are just two weeks left to be part of it.