Redscale

I recently saw an article about redscale photography online, and it inspired me to have a go myself. For those who don’t know, colour film is a sort of orangey-brown colour. Usually the light hits the front face of the film which is light-sensitive, and the orange base doesn’t play a part in the picture taking. With redscale, you tinker with the film and put it in the camera upside down, so the light has to pass through the orange base before it hits the light-sensitive side of the film. This gives all the pictures an orange cast, although depending on the outdoor light at the time, it can actually turn out anything from purple to orange.

There are lots of mixed opinions online, but given that my chosen film (Tudor Colour 200, which is actually manufactured by Fuji) has quite a dark base, I decided to give two stops of extra exposure. Perhaps in hindsight I would give three extra stops. In the most under-exposed areas, the pictures seem to have gone blue.

I exposed the 35mm film in a medium format camera, which explains the sprocket holes in the pictures.

But that’s enough about the technical side – let’s look at the artistic stuff. I’ve visited all of these locations many times before, since I work nearby. But in redscale the scene takes on a whole different feel: somehow nostalgic and autumnal.

Bristol dockside
Queen Square
Wills Memorial Building
Royal Fort Garden
Old Park Hill
Rodway Cloister
Chemistry Building

2 Comments

  1. ADW
    January 23, 2013
    Reply

    The Wills Memorial Building on 35mm is a magnificent image. If done again normally, without the film-flipping, and printed as is shown here, it would be a superb picture–and a perfect emblem for a Bristol photographer.

    • January 23, 2013
      Reply

      Thanks 🙂 I might revisit the idea in spring or summer when the weather isn’t so bad!

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