Push Processing or: Can there be a little more ISO?


No 400 ISO film on hand and there’s a beautiful low-light situation? Only 100 ISO film in the fridge, but you would love to photograph something in motion? Or you want loud contrasting without cross processing? Here’s a Solution!

"Pushing"is actually a well-known photographic technique. Simply put, it involves underexposing film and then having to over-develope it. So insert a 200 iso Film and set the camera to 400 iso. Shoot the entire roll of film and then write “Please push one stop” on the film cassette. I’ve always wanted to try this and now – after I finally dared to – I am delighted with the results: strong contrast, slight color shift and larger grain.

It is even possible to push by one more stop. For example, 100 iso Film can be exposed at 400 iso. Or 400 iso Film at 1600 iso Film. Two stops is the reasonable maximum for color negative, but it is possible to push even further with B&W films.

Testing push processing should also be done with cross-processing or Redscale. So there’s still a lot to try!

written by zark on 2011-06-07 #gear #tutorials #35mm #tipster #low-light #development #iso #pushing #dark-room #processing #film-processing
translated by duckduckninja


  1. pim_g
    pim_g ·

    Ah thanks! I will be trying this soon and don't want to mess up concert shots!

  2. simon-hedge
    simon-hedge ·

    Good article. Was just getting ready for a bit of pushing myself!

  3. aralucia
    aralucia ·

    Great simple explanation of the process and the potential results!

  4. maria_fernanda
    maria_fernanda ·

    Yehi, i've done this since i have mi LC-A, and it totaly works. Thanks for this Tip, a very cool one.

  5. daforl
    daforl ·

    what is the best color film to push? i took the lomography 100CN and it came out pretty grainy..

  6. zark
    zark ·

    Nice Translation!... once again. I wont complain, more fame for me ;-)

  7. bulletofmine
    bulletofmine ·

    thanks for the tip. here in malaysia its hard to find lab which can do pull/push process

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