Properties of X-Ray film

A couple of more pictures from the folk music festival. I didn’t spot many good opportunities there, but I thought I’d share these and talk a bit about X-ray film. In this case 10 years expired AGFA Curix Ortho HT-G Medical X-Ray film.

Green sensitive X-Ray film @ISO100 in reused HC-110 1+50 for 12min at 20C.

Green sensitive X-Ray film @ISO100 in reused HC-110 1+50 for 12min at 20C.

There is one very attractive aspect of shooting X-ray film in a large format camera, the price. The film can be had for cheap on EBay and once cut down to size it costs one tenth of what cheap ordinary B/W film does per sheet.

Another interesting aspect is that it is mostly insensitive to red light. This comes in handy in the darkroom, when it cut down to size as it allows us to have a red safe light on. Which reduces the risk of trimming any fingers together with the film.

But being insensitive to red light also makes it render the world in B/W in a way that we usually don’t see these days. The red details on the guy in the middle’s cap turned black, not grey as we would have expected in a straight conversion to B/W from a color.

Green sensitive X-Ray film @ISO100 in reused HC-110 1+50 for 12min at 20C.

Green sensitive X-Ray film @ISO100 in reused HC-110 1+50 for 12min at 20C.

I find that in flat light, when the brightness and contrast have been adjusted to that everything else looks reasonable, skin tones shift towards the darker. Also find it exaggerates the flatness. But it is still possible to get nice results in direct light, as below.

s188_detail

The soft focus on the face can probably be blamed on a slightly out of adjustment rangefinder on the camera or operator error. At least the backpack is nice and sharp.

I used the same lens on this portrait last year, but then with ordinary B/W sheet film. Then the model had fairer skin than the people in these photos, but the paleness was exaggerated in the photograph, shifting towards the fairer.

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This entry was posted by Wilhelm.

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