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Scan-It-Yourself Tips: The Lo-Fi Way

Who says the scans have to be as close to the negative as possible? I have found a way to scan negatives the scratchy low fidelity way, which makes them look old.

In my quest for do-it-yourself film scanning, I thought I could improve on my usual technique which is to hang the negative in the window and take a photo of it and then invert the colors in GIMP. This has the negative side effect (no pun intended) that the film isn’t flat, so I tried putting it between two glass plates to make it flat, and then put a mirror underneath at an angle to divert sun light to shine from below the film to work as a back light, and then take a picture of it with my digital camera, and invert the colors in GIMP.

The result comes out scratchy and lacking in color depth for some reason unknown to me. I can only stipulate that for some reason the double glass blocked out a part of the spectrum (other than the ultra violet part). Now this can actually be a good thing, provided you are going for that old haggard look.

Also, a word on inverting the colors, it is not as easy as just pressing “invert” Ctrl+I, since all the colors are blue shifted in most emulsions, so one has to shift the RGB-channels separately. Or if you own an Iphone or Android, and want to scan 35 mm film you can buy Lomography Smartphone Scanner

written by impaktor

4 comments

  1. badbokeh

    Very interesting. It looks a little like solarization.
    about 1 year ago · report as spam
  2. 110isnotdead

    110isnotdead

    Really cool idea, I gotta try this ;)

    about 1 year ago · report as spam
  3. taranoia

    taranoia

    Where there's a will, there's a way! How clever and resourceful

    about 1 year ago · report as spam
  4. mafiosa

    mafiosa

    Very cool results and creative idea!

    about 1 year ago · report as spam

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