Thursday, May 17, 2007

X Process (or X-Pro)
Cross Processing is when you put a film though a chemistry that it was not designed for i.e E-6 reversal film though a C-41 Negative developer.

It is a very easy way to get "wacky" colours and extreme contrast and suits a wide range of subjects.

I have found that the best way to do this is to buy cheap out of date slide film, as colour fidelity isn't an issue here and then find a willing minilab for process only.

Be sure to inform the Lab that you want it to go though the wrong process as a helpful lab assistant may just send it off for E-6 process!

When you get your negatives back they will look like this:

Little or no shadow detail and a purple/blue colour with clear rebates.

After printing or scanning the positive image will probably look very strange, high contrast and normally quite yellow or green (the unpredictability is part of the fun):

Depending on your subject you might like to leave it just like that, but in the above picture I felt that green skin tone was not that flattering.

So for the final rendition after scanning I sent the image to Photoshop to 'tweak' it in curves in order to give slightly better skin tones and increase the contrast. There is really no correct rendition of a cross processed image, but that's one of the things that makes it fun, you could even do a series all with different hue adjustments.


All Images and text ©Mark Antony Smith 2007


Charlie Wood said...

Hi, have you shot any EIR this stuff is really "wacky" look on my blog under the Colour infrared tab. Unfortunatly Kodak have stopped manufacturing this film in 135/36. I might give X-processing a go any tips from you are welcome on X-Procesing.

Photo–Smith said...

A while back I used the Ektachrome infra red film that was E4 process (before the E-6 version came out) and only one place in the UK could process it.
I Liked the Magenta grass and the way it would turn clothing different colours, not sure skin tones were that good - cyan green!
X-Pro is pretty easy to do, just get yourself a out of date E-6 and find a 1 hr lab that will process therough the wrong chemical (C41)
have fun!

Charlie Wood said...

Thanks for that.. I will see If I can get my local asda to do x-pro I did ask them once if they did E6 processing but they did not know what E6 processingwas , So If I slip them a roll or slide film they might not notice.
I use them for Dev only they are very cheap.
I was fortunate in having an E6 lab in Horncastle (15mins up the road) that could process EIR unfortunatly they have just closed there E6 lab I think there is another one in Ruskington.
Would I be better using a low speed or a high speed E6 film for x-pro?

Photo–Smith said...

I'd tell Asda that you want c41 as you may be (un)lucky and find a switched on operator who sends it away for 'correct' process.
it doesn't matter what film you use, some guys over-expose by a stop.
7 day shop has some very cheap Agfa film at the moment less than a quid a roll- thats what I'd use!