Happy New Year! I realize we're already two weeks into it but I haven't seen you guys, yet.
2012 started off with a blow to local photographers as Penn Camera announced the closing of several stores with eventual closure of the rest (has anyone been to their clearance sale?). In fact, the day I meant to stop by the Fair Lakes location to pick up fixer and negative sleeves on my drive home from work, but missed the exit and kept driving, was the store's last day in business. That location was my regular local resource for chemicals, film, and color film developing and I commonly made last-minute weekend runs to either of the two DC stores when I suddenly found myself low on film or in need of fixer. This announcement left me temporarily stunned, wondering where I was going to buy stuff when I needed it, forgetting that it's all available on the Internet. But, it's also very local!
Since many of us who relied on Penn Camera for our photo needs found ourselves temporarily lost at this news, as the fog begins to clear it is important to point out the many other photographic resources locally available to us. Below is a list of shops and resources for photographic supplies, film processing, and printing services within the local DC-Metro area, plus a shortened list of online shops to soothe our photographic souls.
I can't attest to them all (and, I've marked the ones I have personally used), but the local stores were all highly recommended. This list serves as a starting-point to branch out your own photo needs; of course, please do your own research on each one before using, just to be sure.
Ace Photo - 44710 Cape Court, Ashburn, VA - film, film processing, printing, darkroom supplies, gear
Bethesda Photographic Center - 8216 Wisconsin Avenue • Bethesda MD - film, processing and printing, darkroom supplies
Dodge-Chrome - Silver Spring & DC - processing, prints, scanning, custom mats, giclee **
Dominion Camera - 112 West Broad Street - processing and enlargements, film
Furthermore - 1019 7th Street, NW, 3rd Floor - printing
General Imaging - 411 New York Ave, NE - printing, mounting, plexi
Vivid Solutions DC Print Lab - 2208 Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue SE - Printing
Supplies & Gear Online:
Adorama - film, chemicals, darkroom supplies, gear **
Archival USA - negative sleeves, storage, display **
B & H Photo Video - film, chemicals, darkroom supplies, gear **
Calumet Photo - film, chemicals, darkroom supplies, gear
Freestyle Photo - film, chemicals, darkroom supplies, gear ** (my usual resource)
KEH - used cameras, lenses, gear
Film Processing & Printing - Mail-Order:
Black and White Lab - b/w only (my personal favorite) **
Dalmation Lab - b/w only
**I have had all positive experiences at these places.
Have I missed anything? Would you like to make suggestions? Please let us know in the comments.