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Scratching super 8mm film


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#1 Kiarash Sadigh

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Posted 15 November 2009 - 04:47 PM

I'm wondering if anyone has experience with scratching the film...my plan is to scratch a roll and shoot some texture and grey card, then use it as a sub-layer for my other stuff....is there a way, for instance, to open the cartridge, scratch and hand-roll back, close the cartridge and shoot? I know the effect can be achieved digitally, but I'd love to be able to pull off an analogue version....
let's talk...
thanks.
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#2 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 15 November 2009 - 05:32 PM

If you scratch the film ahead of time, the scratches will look different than if you process the film, then run the film through a projector to scratch it. If you are not choosey as to what kind of scratches you want, I would go with the scratch after processing method. You may even discover the processing or running the film through the camera added scratches anyways.
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#3 Kiarash Sadigh

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Posted 15 November 2009 - 09:46 PM

If you scratch the film ahead of time, the scratches will look different than if you process the film, then run the film through a projector to scratch it. If you are not choosey as to what kind of scratches you want, I would go with the scratch after processing method. You may even discover the processing or running the film through the camera added scratches anyways.


What would be some of the better ways of scratching the film after processing; i.e. what equipment to use etc. I have a projector and am willing to experiment with post processing scratches...any ideas?
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#4 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 15 November 2009 - 09:56 PM

What would be some of the better ways of scratching the film after processing; i.e. what equipment to use etc. I have a projector and am willing to experiment with post processing scratches...any ideas?


The following are methods for scratching film. I cringe at the thought of actually doing them to any of my super-8 films, but if the footage being shot is specifically being shot so that it can be scratched, here are some "scratching tips".

Don't clean the projector.

There is a technique called "cinching the film" that works quite well. Loosely reel your film onto a second movie reel, then grab the leader and pull on it until the film is nice and tight, instant scratches and cinch marks all over your film.

You can let the film fall onto the ground then respool it and project it.

Any Careless handling of super-8 film will begin to add scratches and dust to it.
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#5 Matt Kemp

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Posted 16 November 2009 - 05:20 PM

A nice way to some scratched up film is also to develop it yourself 'spaghetti style' in a bucket.
Tetenal make an E6 kit which can be used very easily to process your own Ekta 64T, and while the film is wet after the last rinse the emulsion is very sensitive to dust and scratches. Perfect time to throw it on the floor, rub it together, attack it with sandpaper..

Some examples of some film scratched up by other means is here..
View on Vimeo

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#6 Adam Garner

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Posted 16 November 2009 - 10:53 PM

I'd shoot grey, and process as normal. If you shoot on a bad camera, you'll probably have very nice (read: natural) scratches.

If you go overboard with sandpaper or something, it'll look like an art film, or like someone was pointing the camera at cement and running around. ... not a good "effect" if that's what you're going for.

Just keep it natural. Use an old camera that you find at a rummage shop, and run it through a bad (read: uncared for) projector. Voila.
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Aerial Filmworks

The Slider

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS