On our way down to the PPA national convention in New Orleans in January, several GRPP members were sitting in Rochester’s airport awaiting our connecting flight to Washington D.C. As we were sitting there, up walked Tony Kehoe, an Account Manager at Kodak. Tony has long supported the Professional Photographers of NY State and GRPP. After exchanging pleasantries, we talked about the news of Kodak’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings, and the state of affairs down on State Street in Rochester. Shortly before we boarded our flight, Tony invited us to the invitation-only Kodak Gallery Elite Party at the convention.
We arrived at the party and were mesmerized by the prints that were culled from PPA’s International Print Competition and were given the prestigious Kodak Gallery Awards. During the evening, the GRPP members settled in at a small table to eat, and we were joined by 2 of the 3 Kodak hosts that put on the party, including Tony. We suddenly felt like the most important table in the room. The night was capped by the awarding of the Kodak Gallery Elite Award, which was the best image from all the Gallery Award winners. And take heart, all you new photographers out there: 2nd place was taken by a 23-year old photographer entering his first print competition.
After we got home, we received a nice note from Tony, which I wanted to share with you:
Glad you and the group had a good time at the Elite Party. We always enjoy that evening as well.
Thanks for sharing my previous email… it’s important to let photographers know we’re still in business “business as usual”, restructuring is common and we aren’t looking at this as all doom and gloom…expecting to come out of it a better / stronger company.
Our newly developed products continue to become available for this segment of the photo market as we display and discuss at our booth. We launched our new KODAK PROFESSIONAL ENDURA Premier paper, and KODAK PROFESSIONAL ENDURA Metallic paper and they will replace our other paper (Supra VC, and Metallic VC respectively). We support the industry with participation in major trade shows/conventions – highlighting our Connect With Pro Quality message, and of course still have the Gallery Award Program, along with many other activities and involvement in the industry. We continue to work to get our premium Electro-photographic (EP) papers in the market… these papers are “press papers”. They use the high-quality photographic base paper materials and have been optimized them for both types of digital presses (dry and liquid) – while allowing for true photographic look and feel… vs the lower end papers. These paper are excellent for Photobooks, stationary products etc..
Also, while most people don’t think much of it…KODAK film sales have increased for the last two years worldwide and in the US – indicating that film is not dead (contrary to what we all see/hear). I’ve noticed that even the cost of used film cameras, and “traditional equipment” are seeing price escalation… while it is coming back, it’ll never be what it once was…)…. the concern will be one of finding the Pro Labs that will still run a C-41 process for the film – which could be accomplished using our Pro Lab Locator on our website. http://prolabresourcecenter.kodak.com/us/en/locator_advanced.php
Probably more info than you really wanted but I thought my thoughts with you. Thanks again – hope to run into you, and others throughout 2012.
If you need to contact Tony at all, thank him for his continued service, or have any questions about Kodak professional products, please contact him at: firstname.lastname@example.org.