themeron wrote:I don't know why, Dusty, cause here in Brazil we have the same equipment like you. Some American, Chinese and Japanese equipment. The paper is the same, imported from that countries. You just lose money, I guess...
If I had been in Rio, Brasilia, Manaus or Curitiba, maybe. But Santarem in the early 80's was a one-horse town with one TV station, one film processor and electric that went out every day. What I saw from the shop were inconsistent results and over-used chemicals. I'm not sure the equipment they were using was modern, and paper was not too likely to be properly stored. The store wasn't climate controlled, and just the fact that humidity can go from 50% to 99% in an hour made local processing chancy.
I love Brasil, and may be headed back there with my family for a few years, but the Amazon region was and largely remains a frontier. People skrimp on the equipment they use and how they do things to be more economical. I did it too. If the local guy would have installed a good AC system, dumped used chemicals when needed and run his shop like a first rate lab, he would have gone broke, because there wasn't that large of a shutterbug community in town. A lot of the work was from guys taking pictures in the gold mining areas of those who struck it big, then high-tailing it back to get prints made before the guy ended up dead in a gun fight! I know one of the guys who did this.
Up-river in the mining towns it was like the Old West (US). Twice a day boats came down-river, and nearly every day one - sometimes both - would be carrying the body of a guy who got shot over a claim, knifed in a drunken fight by his "best friend" over a hooker, etc. Such things are typical of anyone poor who suddenly makes it rich, and not to be considered a slam on meus amigos brasileros.