makeshift film

Discussion in 'The Darkroom' started by fotophia, Jul 8, 2006.

  1. fotophia

    fotophia TPF Noob!

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    i thought it would be best to put it here

    Is it possible to make you own film? like they did back when it was first invented and such.

    I had a trawl on the internet but it just kept throwing up stuff that didnt match. Its more random curiosity. Ive been looking at all the first ever photos and such at making film and a makeshift camera and making someone sit and pose for ages. Just to sort of have a feel for what they had to do and how many attempts it must have took etc..

    is there still film out there you can buy that takes like 5mins to expose etc??

    im really just looking for info on re-creating the first ever photography.

    All info on repeating the process in some way would be appreciated.

    Thanks
     
  2. JamesD

    JamesD Between darkrooms

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    You can buy liquid emulsion and hand-coat plates (or paper, or just about anything else) but it's a bit expensive. I imagine you can also look up original forumlae for emulsions for coating, but again, expensive (and probably difficult). My suggestion for cheap material (although you don't have to prepare it youself) is....

    Photographic paper negatives. With a pinhole, paper negatives take hours of exposure indoors, and outdoors, they take several minutes. Pinhole also gives you something similar to that soft look common in the antique photographs. If you're using a lens, then a small aperture can lengthen the exposure time, but the image will be sharp.

    An example of a pinhole, paper negative exposure:
    [​IMG]
    150mm, f/294, 2:30 exposure, estimated ISO 5-8, home-made box pinhole camera, 4X5 format, shaded sunlight and a single large reflector on the ground directly to the subject's right (left side of image) reflecting direct sunlight. This is a contact print.

    An example of a paper negative using a lens:
    [​IMG]
    Aperture about F/5.6, exposure in the range of a few second (8?), estimated ISO 5-8. Two incandescent lights, one 100W, one 40W, in bowl reflectors, indoors at night. Mamiya 645, 80mm, (medium format). This is a scan of the negative.

    Both of these images were made on Ilford MCIII glossy RC paper, with no filtration. Check out the thread The Paper Negative in Alt Techniques; a couple-few of us have been working with this technique, and Mysteryscribe is into the retro look, too.
     
  3. fotophia

    fotophia TPF Noob!

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    oh wow! thankyou so much! once i get home from work tonight ill have a good read through all of it. thanks again!
     
  4. JamesD

    JamesD Between darkrooms

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    No problem, happy to help! I fixed the second image link so it works now. Sorry about that.

    The more people we can corrupt into our world of maddeningly frustrating pinholes and paper negatives, the happie we are!

    Muahahahah!

    Seriously, though, I hope it does help; the research and development has been tons of fun!
     
  5. mysteryscribe

    mysteryscribe TPF Noob!

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    The paper negative is a terrific film substitute.... It is slow allowing time exposures in even broad daylight. The only drawback I found that I couldn't work around is the lack of fine detail.

    However it is similar in look to the negative material made by hand in th early early days of photography. Also the better your lense the better the look but, the poor your lens the better the feel. So how can you go wrong. Plus it is dirt cheap.

    And james thats the first i have seen of the paper neg from you in a camera with a lens. That is a nice shot.
     
  6. JamesD

    JamesD Between darkrooms

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    Thanks, Charlie. I felt a bit odd, trying to convince myself that it really was okay to pour Dektol into my film tank... It's just not natural LOL

    The guitar illustrates one important point about paper negatives: paper has an exposure latitude of about 5 stops, depending on various factors including the light used, the development, and any filtration. No matter what you do, however, you can't match the latitude of film. That's one reason why exposure is so critical, and why control of the lighting is so important.

    In the original scene, if shot with film, the black side of the guitar would have retained enough detail to show the grain of the wood. Even more to the point, the pick-guard, which is black with just a few spots, would have been full of detail.

    And, the guitar was facing the other way. I forgot to flip it after I scanned it; if you're looking at the emulsion side of the negative (and the negative only; contact prints reverse themselves again) then the image will be flipped left to right. If you look THROUGH it, then it will be normal. It's just the way photographic materials work.
     
  7. mysteryscribe

    mysteryscribe TPF Noob!

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    by the way james i found a bit about xray film on f295 you should take a look
     
  8. fotophia

    fotophia TPF Noob!

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    lol you can corrupt me all you like ^_^ after my next wage i should have enough to splash out on a few things.. ive never even made a pin before! terrible! it all sounds really cool!
     
  9. mysteryscribe

    mysteryscribe TPF Noob!

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    I have been accused of many things, but never of being cool...
     
  10. Philip Weir

    Philip Weir TPF Noob!

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    Haven't got a lot of time to make any comments, except to say, got to it "photophia" It's good to see someone experimenting. have attached a couple of images from glass negatives.
    [​IMG][​IMG]
     
  11. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    Daguerreotype, calotype, albumen, collodion, ambrotype, dry plate, and then celluloid film. All of these before dry plate require some sort of field darkroom, or doing the photography within reach of a darkroom.

    http://www.alternativephotography.com/
     
  12. mysteryscribe

    mysteryscribe TPF Noob!

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    and albumin required you have your own chicken ranch
     

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