I knew I had shot a roll of medium format color sometime during the winter. I also knew that I hadn’t been able to find, it so it was never developed. It’s unusual for me to lose film, unless it belongs to Erin McCann* (I’m still very very sorry!), but I figured it would turn up somewhere in the bottom of a camera bag or someplace that made sense at the time, so I wasn’t too concerned and forgot all about it.
Jump ahead to yesterday and the chain of events goes like this:
I had three rolls of Arista.EDU Ultra (2 rolls of 35mm and 1 roll of 120) ready to process. Due to the developing time and dilution required for this particular film in the developer I am currently using, I was unable to combine any of the other rolls of film with these, so I did the two 35mm rolls first, followed by the medium format.
The first two rolls looked fine and normal and were hung up in the shower to dry while I processed the third roll. When that was done and I pulled it out of the tank - the film was muddy and dark and cloudy and I figured that the 1:50 dilution was too weak to reuse the developer like I had or that the fixer was exhausted. I hung it up, anyway, and left it to dry with the others.
A few hours later, I put the negatives into sleeves and noticed that the frame numbers of the medium format roll were very clear and visible, as was the film brand - Kodak - and the film type - Ektar. I found that roll of color that was missing.
You see, I didn’t mention that the roll of medium format that I developed was in an Arista.EDU Ultra film box and that I had only peaked inside to make sure it wasn’t a new one, and didn’t actually look at the roll, itself. It went straight into the changing bag as it was - hey, I was trying to avoid light leaks.
This brings me to a topic that I started to include in my cross-processing post last month and decided against it since it wasn’t something I had ever tried and didn’t have any intention of ruining a perfectly good roll of film just so I would know what I was talking about or have pictures to show (ha).
So, developing C-41 film in black and white chemicals - some people do it on purpose.
This is what it looks like:
Next time, I will visually confirm that each roll of film is what I think it is before it goes into the changing bag.
That brings me to next week - I will be doing a film developing demo at Artomatic on Wednesday, June 20, from 8 to 9:30 p.m. It's free and I'll explain each step as it happens while I develop some film. If you're curious about developing your own black and white film, have no concept of what is involved in developing your own film, or are just looking for something fun to do that night, please come!