I wonder what would happen if…

…you developed colour film in black and white chemicals?

C-41 in B&W chem pinhole

Well, you get a negative of sorts. Having just shot a whole roll of 200 ASA film in a camera set to 400 ASA, I got a bit concerned about sending it off to a lab who were not going to realise what I'd done and make disappointing prints from it. Then I remembered that I'd read a webpage once about a chap who developed a colour slide film in b&w chemistry and suddenly got completely obsessed with doing that.

Matters were helped by me having about 3.5 litres spare of ID-11 after the old camera experiment of last month (see below), but I figured I'd test the process on another film anyway, just in case. Back in 2003 (possibly earlier actually) I made a pinhole camera from an old disposable, and ran one film successfully through it. I then loaded it with another film, but got confused about what I'd taken on it and how far I'd got (I broke most of the mechanisms including the film advance counter getting the lens and shutter out) so I'd ended up forgetting about it.

This, therefore would be my test film.

10 minutes in neat ID-11 at 20 deg, plus 5 in the fix resulted in what looked at first to be nothing at all – the film was still brown like unused colour film when I opened the tank. But on the inside there were clearly visible negative images. Holding them up to the light revealed they were fairly visible through the thick orange of the film.

I dried off the shot above quickly with a hair dryer and scanned it, and was pleasantly surprised, though part of me now wishes I could have seen the colour version :S That white blur is me, by the way.

A couple more scans…


Big plug


…and more about developing colour film in b&w chemistry here and here.

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