Personal ~ Playing with Film

When I studied photography in 1999-2000, it was back in the days of film. We developed our own colour and black and white film and did all our own printing by hand in the darkroom. Digital cameras were in existence, but they were poor quality 2 megapixel things that we only really regarded as toys – something to play around with – not for serious budding photographers! Years later when I upgraded to a digital SLR, I decided to keep my film SLR which then sat in my cupboard for years until late last year when I decided to put a roll of film through it just for fun. Funny how back in the day, digital cameras were for playing around on but now, it’s the film cameras that have taken over that role.

So I shot a roll of 36 exposure slide film – Fuji RDP III colour slide film to be exact. To assist in the fun stakes, I decided to have it cross processed – which means it was developed in C-41 colour negative film chemicals instead of E6 colour slide film chemicals. This means you end up with negatives instead of slide film, with the added wildcards of distinctive and sometimes random colour shifts, an overall contrast boost and bucketloads of gorgeous grain.

Of course my subject matter was dogs – my two girls – Kaya and Luna – at their favourite place in the world, the dog beach at The Spit here on the Gold Coast. I only just had this film developed last week, and we lost Kaya in March this year, so it was both uplifting and incredibly sad to see images of her that I hadn’t seen before.

I’m really happy with how these images turned out. With cross processing you always expect the worst, as this technique can be quite unpredictable with varied and often undesired results. There are a few images in here which I absolutely love though which was a pleasant surprise. All of the images below have not be edited in any way – they are straight digital scans from the film straight out of the camera – just resized for the blog and watermarked.

Enjoy. 🙂

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8 Comments
  • Renee

    12 August, 2009 at 2:01 am Reply

    These photos are absolutely amazing! Although I am not a professional photographer, film is my favorite form of shooting photography—you just can’t beat the grainy feel!

  • Ruth

    12 August, 2009 at 8:53 am Reply

    These are gorgeous Charlotte! I did some cross processing in college too, but I don’t remember getting such chunky grain, I love it! I wish I was rich enough to be able to play with film more often 🙂

  • Michelle

    12 August, 2009 at 10:47 am Reply

    So nice to see the pics of Kaya. They are wonderful photos and I too love the grainy-ness and contrast. The first one almost looks 3D.

  • Michael

    12 August, 2009 at 9:46 pm Reply

    Awesome, makes m wish I kept my old Canon… 🙁

  • Lessie

    13 August, 2009 at 2:30 am Reply

    Absolutely gorgeous. And sweet/sad to see Kaya. *Kiss* for her.

  • amanda

    13 August, 2009 at 6:03 am Reply

    those last two are stunning!

  • Rosalynne

    14 August, 2009 at 1:13 pm Reply

    WoW! I *love* the texture. How bittersweet to see Kaya, it just goes to show that she is still with you, and shows up in such unexpected ways. The girls are beautiful, and the picture of the coast is amazing! Thanks for sharing these.

  • Claire

    18 August, 2009 at 12:08 pm Reply

    charlotte these are just lovely. i can only imagine how much you must treasure these shots of both your girls, but especially of kaya. really, really beautiful.

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