Fun with Film Part 2
The Results Are in!
We Told You We’d Do It!
So in between all our work we finally managed to shoot and process (and cross process) our rolls of C-41 and slide film. And just like we promised the results are definitely fun and interesting and can certainly add a pretty quirky aesthetic to the images shot and cross processed. Like we said in our last post, this isn’t about doing exact scientific tests and giving all the crazy math and chemistry. It’s about the fun you can have when you experiment with film and break the rules. For this we shot all the images under natural light to get the ball rolling.
The most noticeable thing straight away is the green cast across the images. This can definitely lend itself to giving the images a certain moody characteristic in certain situations but used for landscapes you end up with really pumped up, cartoonish greens while having desaturated reds/pinks/oranges. It may not be the best for capturing the true spectrum of nature’s colours but it can really make those rolling hills and fields pop.
Once we look a little closer you can start to notice a slight loss of quality and sharpness in the details of the images. This is really down to the slide film being processed “wrong” compared to the C-41. This is really down to the chemicals interacting with the emulsion of the film in a way that it wasn’t meant to. Again this can add certain dreamy and mood characteristics to your shots after they’ve been cross processed.
In the right situation this could create some really stunning and dramatic photos at the sacrifice of detail and sharpness, but the trade-off can really be worth it. But of course, if we were looking for razor sharp, technically accurate images we probably wouldn’t be doing this in the first place. Like the above photos when you shoot certain subjects you can get incredibly surreal and funky effects. A pretty straight forward shot of some trees in a forest suddenly becomes an almost trippy and weird image.
Well now that we have the cross processing done for C-41 and slide in natural daylight we’re thinking of seeing what can happen once we introduce it to different lighting conditions such as late evening and night time photography. I personally can’t wait to see a cross processed sunset. We’re also going to see what other slide films we can track down and experiment with different film speeds and see how that affects the end result. We’ll be sticking with our trusty Zenit and Canon for the majority of our film test. But don’t forget, if you have any ideas for us you’d like to see us try just let us know. And who knows, they might make their way into our specialty film services we offer on the site. Check back again soon to see our next round of testing/experimentation to see what we come up with.