my black-and-whites turned out sepia

Discussion in 'Film Discussion and Q & A' started by maddieb, Jul 26, 2010.

  1. maddieb

    maddieb TPF Noob!

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    Hi! I apologize if this has already been discussed- I couldn't find it anywhere. I recently had some rolls of 35mm black and white film printed at the cvs on my corner and was very upset to see they turned out almost sepia. Several looked okay to me but most of them looked brownish, and on some you could clearly see the red-brown in the light areas of the photo. I took them back but the photo technician said it was a problem with my film, not with their processing or printing. I'm not entirely sure I can believe her, but I don't know what to do. I took the pictures using my vintage Canon AE-1 SLR- it's not in the best shape (I lost the lens cap a while back and haven't gotten it cleaned) and the color is always just slightly off, but I've used it enough to recognize how my film should turn out. I've never seen this before and haven't been able to find anything about it online. I took the pictures in Arizona and there is a possibility the film got too hot- I don't know what happens to film in high temperatures but I did my best to keep it cool. I also had the rolls with me on the plane, but I've never had a problem with the x-ray ruining my film before.
    So I was wondering if anyone has seen/heard of this before and can offer me an explanation. I don't want to spend the money on having them processed somewhere else if they may turn out the same, but if they are better the cvs photo technician told me I can get a refund there. Any advice? Thanks!
     
  2. compur

    compur No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    What film was it?

    Did CVS process and print it or did you bring them negatives processed elsewhere which CVS printed from?
     
  3. Sjixxxy

    Sjixxxy TPF Noob!

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    minilab + B&W. Not a good idea. If it was a c-41 process black & white film like XP-2, then having them develop it would be find, just don't expect a nice neutral black & white tone from any machine prints.

    Back in the day when I'd I'd send C41 Black & white film to a lab I'd always get back green hued prints. I think you got lucky with a sepia tone.
     
  4. ann

    ann No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    this is a common problem with having these places print black and white images. unless you can find some place that will do custom printing you will have some sort of color shift. NOT a true neutral black and white image. They are using color paper with color chemistry and there will be a color cast . Your lucky it is sepia, rather than green or magenta. It is madding
     
  5. BKMOOD

    BKMOOD TPF Noob!

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    Ann is exactly right. CVS, Target and the like don't have the ability to print pure black and white. Their "chemical process" and machines are designed to print color. If you want pure black and white you must send it to a lab (or print it in your own darkroom).

    I develop my own black and white negatives (yeah, I still shoot film) and I have stopped taking them to the corner shop for prints because they come back in all sorts of colors (lol).
     
  6. maddieb

    maddieb TPF Noob!

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    thanks guys. I did have them do both the film processing and the printing, and I'd been looking forward to the kind of results I got when I used to process and print my own black and whites at school. I guess I've never actually had them done elsewhere before. Such a shame. But good to know. Thanks!
     
  7. Mike_E

    Mike_E No longer a newbie, moving up!

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  8. Pgeobc

    Pgeobc TPF Noob!

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    >they turned out almost sepia.<

    No problem! Just tell everyone that they were taken before 1940 or so.
    :)

    Everyone knows that most stuff happened in sepia-tone before 1940. Just look at the ads, etc.
     
  9. malkav41

    malkav41 TPF Noob!

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    I had Walgreens process/print some Kodak BW400CN C-41 once, and all the photos were green! Also had Wallyworld do some of the same type film one hour, and had pretty close to B&W prints, but they don't do one hour anymore so... :(
     
  10. djacobox372

    djacobox372 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Unless they're printing with a b/w process then you're going to have issues like this.

    B/W film varies alot in it's emulsion color... some is bluish some is neutral and some is sepia tone--of course this doesn't matter if you're printing on black and white paper.
     
  11. epatsellis

    epatsellis TPF Noob!

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    Well, partially true, we have a Fuji Frontier at the studio. If you calibrate each roll with the built in densitometer and are concientous about your chemistry, you can get a dead neutral black and white, we do all the time. However, few labs bother.
     
  12. ann

    ann No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    that is good to know, but hard to find those places that care and have the people trained to do so.
     

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