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Examples of hand cross-processing


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#1 Thomas Worth

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Posted 30 July 2005 - 10:28 PM

We were talking about hand processing motion picture films at home in another thread and I though I'd post some samples. These two frames were shot on my Canon SLR with the 85mm f/1.8 lens. The stock is 5279 (500T). The film was cross-processed in C-41 chemistry, which is what is used to process still negative film. I also left out the bleach step (silver retained), so it is a true "bleach bypass" look. I didn't do any color correction in Photoshop. This is exactly the way it came off the scanner (a Fuji Frontier).

This is a fun thing to do and it's cheap! A Kodak C-41 developer kit that makes 1 gallon is only $10, and fixer is only $5 or so (I used the Ilford ammonium thiosulfate fixer in the small white bottle). With that much developer, you can do about 15 rolls of film (each roll requires 250 ml of developer). And the fixer, of course, can be reused over and over. Technically, the developer can too, but I wouldn't bother since it's so cheap.

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#2 K Borowski

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Posted 30 July 2005 - 10:54 PM

This is an interesting look Thomas. The skin tones seem tainted somehow. Is that from the bleach bypass or the cross-processing? Also, with regard to doing ECN-2 in C-41, how did you account for the rem-jet issue? And why didn't you just do ECN-2 at home instead of C-41? While I'm sure you can't get a 1-L kit of ECN-2 the formulas are published by Kodak, so you can make a batch of the stuff as big or small as you want.

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#3 Thomas Worth

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Posted 31 July 2005 - 12:06 AM

This is an interesting look Thomas.  The skin tones seem tainted somehow.  Is that from the bleach bypass or the cross-processing?

I'm sure it's a combination of both. First, the C-41 processing renders the image with a very green cast, so a lot of the red is missing. And bypassing the bleach step desaturates the image, reducing the reds even more.

Also, with regard to doing ECN-2 in C-41, how did you account for the rem-jet issue?

The rem-jet seems to come off after the stop bath. I use a stop of water and sulfuric acid, and once that is over much of the rem-jet flows out with the stop. I'm not sure if it's the developer or the stop that really loosens the rem-jet, but by the time the fixer is applied, most of it seems to be gone.

And why didn't you just do ECN-2 at home instead of C-41?  While I'm sure you can't get a 1-L kit of ECN-2 the formulas are published by Kodak, so you can make a batch of the stuff as big or small as you want.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I would love to, but I can't seem to find an easy way to get "seasoned" ECN-2 developer. C-41 developer is readily available in small quantities (both seasoned and replenisher), but not ECN-2. If you've got a source for the stuff, I'd love to know!
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#4 L K Keerthi Basu

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Posted 31 July 2005 - 10:47 AM

I'm sure it's a combination of both. First, the C-41 processing renders the image with a very green cast, so a lot of the red is missing. And bypassing the bleach step desaturates the image, reducing the reds even more.
The rem-jet seems to come off after the stop bath. I use a stop of water and sulfuric acid, and once that is over much of the rem-jet flows out with the stop. I'm not sure if it's the developer or the stop that really loosens the rem-jet, but by the time the fixer is applied, most of it seems to be gone.
I would love to, but I can't seem to find an easy way to get "seasoned" ECN-2 developer. C-41 developer is readily available in small quantities (both seasoned and replenisher), but not ECN-2. If you've got a source for the stuff, I'd love to know!

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>



Remjet will be the biggest problem to you because, as you said the remjet is dissolved in the stop bath and most of them are loosen in the fix bath. This remjet will contaminates your Developer , stop and fix bath solution by further more process in the same bath. Remjet will become loosen when it is dipped in water for some time, so that some of the remjet will be left in the developer also. This will stay in the solution, some of them will even stick to the emulsion side of the of your negative and impossible to remove with your cleaning solutions.
So use a prebath and wash the remjet with adequate water , take much care that the remjet should not stick to the emulsion. Go through the KODAK prebath formula it will cost you only little. Wash throughly after every stage , this will give you better quality.

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#5 Thomas Worth

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Posted 31 July 2005 - 04:50 PM

So use a prebath and wash the remjet with adequate water , take much care that the remjet should not stick to the emulsion.  Go through the KODAK prebath formula it will cost you only little.  Wash throughly after every stage , this will give you better quality.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I originally tried a pre-bath with a solution of borax and sodium hydroxide (per Kodak's spec), but it wasn't very effective at removing the rem-jet by itself. In a film processing machine, the solution is sprayed onto the film, which both softens it and removes it. I gave up on this after noticing that the developer and stop stage removed more of the rem-jet than the pre-bath.

I haven't had any trouble with rem-jet sticking to the emulsion. As far as I can tell, having the rem-jet present in the developer doesn't harm anything. It doesn't quite "dissolve" in the developer as much as simply settling to the bottom. Besides, the carbon rem-jet is chemically inert and shouldn't have any influence on the action of the developer.
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#6 L K Keerthi Basu

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Posted 01 August 2005 - 10:54 AM

I originally tried a pre-bath with a solution of borax and sodium hydroxide (per Kodak's spec), but it wasn't very effective at removing the rem-jet by itself. In a film processing machine, the solution is sprayed onto the film, which both softens it and removes it. I gave up on this after noticing that the developer and stop stage removed more of the rem-jet than the pre-bath.

I haven't had any trouble with rem-jet sticking to the emulsion. As far as I can tell, having the rem-jet present in the developer doesn't harm anything. It doesn't quite "dissolve" in the developer as much as simply settling to the bottom. Besides, the carbon rem-jet is chemically inert and shouldn't have any influence on the action of the developer.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


But I have removed the remjet with the use of the prebath solution. I have done this to shoot the film without the remjet. And I have no problem with this as you said. How many feet of film are you using for 1 litre. I had a problem like this when I developed like you in the C41 without removing the remjet in the prebath stage.
As you said that carbon remjet is inert chemical in the developer then why they need a prebath stage before it enter the developing?
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#7 John Pytlak RIP

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Posted 01 August 2005 - 03:54 PM

The ECN-2 prebath SOFTENS the rem-jet binder, but the high salt content keeps most of it on the film. It's when the softened rem-jet is rinsed off with fresh water that it comes off, with buffers used to remove any residual binder:

http://www.kodak.com.../h242/h2402.pdf (See page 6)
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#8 Thomas Worth

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Posted 01 August 2005 - 07:31 PM

The ECN-2 prebath SOFTENS the rem-jet binder, but the high salt content keeps most of it on the film.  It's when the softened rem-jet is rinsed off with fresh water that it comes off, with buffers used to remove any residual binder:

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

See, this is where I have a problem. My small hand processing tank won't allow enough water pressure to build up while shaking to get the rem-jet off. So, I've had to live with leaving it in the developer.

As you said that carbon remjet is inert chemical in the developer then why they need a prebath stage before it enter the developing?

The reason is because the developer in a bulk processing machine is re-used. If the rem-jet was not removed prior to running the film through the developer, the carbon would accumulate in the developer tank and possibly displace enough developer or cause temperature changes to the point where results would be unpredictable. Plus, it's messy. If you are only using the developer once and then discarding it, I don't think it's an issue.
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#9 Adam Frisch FSF

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Posted 18 September 2005 - 09:33 AM

Interesting. C-41 has always been claimed by those who've tried to be close enough to ECN2 to be usable. Seems like they were right.

I've read that the E-6 bleach however is supposed to be a better match with MP film, but don't know if this is true. But in your example you didn't use bleach, of course.

When I was younger I made a drawing for a small minilab-style home film processor (slow processing to save space) that was supposed to use C-41 chemistry, but obviously this is years ago now and long forgotten.
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#10 Dominic Case

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Posted 18 September 2005 - 07:15 PM

Nice look.

But to be precise, please don't call it cross-processing. You are processing a negative stock as a negative: nothing "cross" about that. The term cross-processing correctly describes processing reversal stock as a negative (or, arguably, I suppose, the other way around).

The C41 process is very similar (in its major components) to the ECN2 process. But if you want to develop in an ECN2 developer, and you are close to a motion picture lab, they might part with a litre of seasoned developer - if you promised not to bring all your friends next week for a litre each;-)
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#11 J. Lamar King

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Posted 19 September 2005 - 02:12 AM

Did you skip the C-41 bleach entirely? This stuff doesn't look that much different than regular C-41 film skipping the bleach entirely. Looks much bluer than I used to get, but similar.
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