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  1. #1
    mattbellphoto's Avatar
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    Purposely damaging color film

    I want to experiment with creative uses of purposely damaging color film, mainly for distortion/color effects.

    A friend of mine was given a box of dozens of somewhat-recently expired rolls of 35mm Fujicolor Superia X-tra 400 film from a friend of his working in the photolab at a local Costco.

    After shooting several rolls, we're discovering the batch has a pretty ugly magenta color cast. It's not enough to ruin the film, but enough to require subtly filtering the scene green to make skin not look so gross..

    This is our stock and reason for wanting methods of purposely damaging the film..

    But we can't damage the film so much that we can't still take it to our local el-cheapo photolab.

    I know most of this is simply trail-and-error, but I'd like to find out some baseline
    tolerances and ideas of others who've tried similar things, either for creative purposes or from quality control testing..

    But my (Google) searches have come up short.

    Any ideas?

    Or web sources for such info?


    ..at the moment our ideas only go as far as heating, and possibly radiating the film. Heating elements considered: the natural approach, leaving rolls in a sun-soaked car (~100-120ºF?) for X period of time.. vs. "cooking" rolls in an oven (short of physically melting the film) at XºF for X period of time. Maybe heating followed by rapid cooling X number of times.. etc.

    Maybe even nuking the film in a microwave. Either by removing the film from the canister and microwaving through a plastic/paper light-tight box, or even zaping the film through the metal canisters.. I'm willing to risk a little mayhem if it could result in bizarro random spark patterns throughout the roll..

    But again, if anyone has tried or knows of someone who has tried similar techniques, we're looking for potential starting and breaking points.

    The key is, it has to enhance/distort the (latent) images up to the point of utter abstraction, but without entirely destroying the images or the film..
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  2. #2
    Stephen Frizza's Avatar
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    why not post processing reticulate the emulsion? or play around with dying portions of the film? theres heaps you can do to colour film.
    "Its my profession to hijack time" ~ Stephen Frizza.

  3. #3
    Sirius Glass's Avatar
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    Shoot it with yellow and cyan filters ans see how close you can get the color to balance by guessing.
    Warning!! Handling a Hasselblad can be harmful to your financial well being!

    Nothing beats a great piece of glass!

    I leave the digital work for the urologists and proctologists.

  4. #4
    Domin's Avatar
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    Film torture, ha!

    Multiple exposure. If your camera supports it you can do it straight with some creative control. If it doesn't you can put the film though camera twice or more.

    Pre processing: (in total darkess)

    Redscale. Search the net for that term.

    You can try to use static electricity. Charge by rubbing the back side against some clothing. In total darkness you can actually see very small sparks which would be otherwise invisible. Might be cool experience even if results are not especially interesting.

    Use blunt object. Impact or folding leaves marks. Don't damage it to much though or you might have trouble processing in a minilab.

    Processing:

    You can try cross process - develop it in E6 process. You'll get low contrast slides probably with blue or green cast. Blown highlights are usually pink. The film might need from 1 to 3 stops overexposure. Or not. Bracketing is a good idea.

    After processing:

    Hot water may reticulate or even distort the base.
    You might try sandpaper, pins or needles.

  5. #5
    Athiril's Avatar
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    after process or even before bleach and fix... make a weak dilution of laundry bleach (sodium hyopchlorite) it'll eat everything slowly if the dilution is weak enough

  6. #6
    DanielStone's Avatar
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    get a lighter. burn baby burn .

    heat-damaged negs can look really cool sometimes

    -Dan

  7. #7
    keithwms's Avatar
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    I wonder if you could boil the emulsion off of roll film. (you can certainly boil it off the fuji instant film fp100c)
    "Only dead fish follow the stream"

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  8. #8
    Sirius Glass's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by keithwms View Post
    I wonder if you could boil the emulsion off of roll film. (you can certainly boil it off the fuji instant film fp100c)
    Yes, Plat-It does than and transfers the emulsion from the print to a wood base. It would probably work on film. Why do it? I do no know, you asked the question.

    Steve
    Warning!! Handling a Hasselblad can be harmful to your financial well being!

    Nothing beats a great piece of glass!

    I leave the digital work for the urologists and proctologists.

  9. #9
    keithwms's Avatar
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    Why do it? Because the result is a one-of-a-kind image. And because that image so boldly contrasts with the photoshopped perfection that seems to surround us now. In an age when one can no longer trust the truth of the images we see, an image that is raw and imperfect can be a breath of fresh air.

    As long as the damaged image presents something deeper than merely the damage done, I think this is an idea worth exploring.
    "Only dead fish follow the stream"

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  10. #10
    Aurum's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stephen Frizza View Post
    why not post processing reticulate the emulsion? or play around with dying portions of the film? theres heaps you can do to colour film.
    Can you do that with C41? I thought there was no emulsion left in conventionally processed C41, just dye.
    "Flatter Me, and I May Not Believe You. Criticize Me, and I May Not like You. Ignore Me, and I May Not Forgive You. Encourage Me, and I Will Not Forget You."

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