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Experiment N°2: Film Loves Coffee

I kept on manipulating 35mm films. Read on after the jump to find out what I've made use of this time around.

Photo by simonesavo

This tipster came to life after I realized how films react when soaked in coffee.I used an expired Kodak Portra 160 NC for the first experiment, and that’s what you need to put this tipster into practice:

  • 1 roll of film (I recommend using a slow speed film such as 100 or 200 ISO)
  • freshly brewed coffee
  • a disposable glass
Photo by simonesavo

Okay, prepare the coffee pot and place it on the stove, put your film in the glass and wait for the coffee to be ready.

Photo by simonesavo

Right, here comes the most delicate step. Pour the hot coffee in the glass containing the film and make sure to soak it. Let it stand for 4 or 5 minutes.

Photo by simonesavo

After a while, rinse the roll for a few minutes with running water. Make sure to get rid of the coffee you used and beware not to drink it!

(That’s the part I hate the most…) Wait for the film to dry. Leave it in a cool dry place for 2 or 3 weeks. Now we can load it into our favorite camera and start shooting :)

You can find some examples below.

Kodak Portra 160NC Expired & Coffe

Here is another experiment, made with an expired Kodak Gold 100 & Coffee

Just in case you’ve missed it, here it is.

I’ll get back to you soon with brand new “concoctions” :)

written by simonesavo and translated by stea


  1. simonesavo


    Grazie @stea per la traduzione :)

    over 1 year ago · report as spam
  2. pam-stach



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  3. stea



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  4. laacs


    interesting :)

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  5. lomographer-88


    do you have to shoot first the film and then pour the coffee or in the other way around

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  6. simonesavo


    @lomographer-88 I have always done this process and once dried the film I've got clicked on

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  7. lomographer-88


    @simonesavo Thanks for the answer but I still have one question how do you know your film is dry

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  8. simonesavo


    @lomographer-88 Generally in 2 or 3 weeks the film is dry and ready to be used :)

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  9. nabilanabolo

    You dont open the film canister before pouring the coffee?
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  10. madeinabowl


    Hi, I accidentally soaked my roll too long :( I forgot it! I soaked it in the coffee for about 15 minutes? Is it bad? Are my photos going to succeed? Sorry for my english i'm dutch :)

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  11. kocmonosy

    @nabilanabolo no, you do not. @madeinabowl generally, you never know how the "destroyed" film is going to turn out, so you cannot say how long/intensive "damaging" is still okay and what's too much, but since even very agressive acids won't completely ruin the film, a 15 minutes long coffee bath sure won't be a problem, so go ahead and shoot it! :)
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  12. madeinabowl


    yeaahh!! awesome!! thanks a lot!! i have confidence now!!

    about 1 year ago · report as spam
  13. edawgy


    Does this process warp the film?
    11 months ago · report as spam

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The original version of this article is written in: Italiano. It is also available in: Spanish & Türkçe.