Manipulation of negatives

For those of you still working with film, I thought this might be of some interest.

It is possible to artfully destroy your negatives either through the use of metal utensils, sandpaper or fire. I personally prefer sandpaper which can give quite a painterly effect when used on the edges of a photo. 200 grade sandpaper = coarse, 800 grade sandpaper = fine.

This technique works particularly well with non-polaroid emulsion lifts described in my earlier journal entry. The contact paper retains the sanded bits of emulsion giving the print a sketched/painted look. Don’t forget to dry the print/negative as the emulsion will tend to clump up instead of smear when you sand it down.

I have found that the techniques described above tend to work best with simple compositions.

I’ll post some examples when I can be bothered scanning them in :)
Also if you do try it, please post your results I would love to see them!


Journal Comments

  • Stephen Mitchell
  • Jennifer N. Heibloem