After our holiday to the Caribbean I have been struggling with inspiration and with fitness (the first because of adjusting to Dutch landscape, the second because of surgery), resulting in a bit of a dry period when it comes to photography. But there were a couple of moments with decent weather where I wanted to get out of the house. Because of the physical restrictions related to my surgery I could only walk a small block around the neighbourhood. This time of year, that means photographing blooming trees, so I decided to give slide another try after being pretty pleased with the results in Curacao and Bonaire. I figured slide would work well with the delicate flowers.

After finishing a roll I got impatient, so I decided to expand the experiment to cross-processing the film, as I have C-41 chemicals in my house. For those who don’t know: the normal process for slide films to develop it in E-6 chemicals. However, you can develop slide in C-41, and this is called cross-processing. The result should be treated as negatives, so that is what I did when scanning the film. Depending on the specific film, cross-processing can lead to some odd colors. I haven’t tried this myself before, but as this roll was shot playing around my neighbourhood, I figured I could take a risk.

So here are my best results, nothing too wonky but still different from what I would have expected from slide.

First: A couple of flowers where the colors are still pretty realistic:

The next one is a bit different, as somehow the green in the leaves has disappeared:

I think the color-shift in my next image is pretty subtle, but it gives the image a more rain-forest atmosphere, although it was taken along the bank of a canal:

This image of grass and sky is my wonkiest that I still like. I like the turquoise in the sky, and the grass has gone more red giving a nice contrast to the sky:

A few pretty normal ones:

The last two are my favourites. Probably because of the light, no matter what film or subject you shoot, good light always wins. But I also like the green and red colors, I think I will experiment more with cross-processing slide shot in a forest:

I think the results are ok, but I am not sure if I like the results better than I would have if the film was developed as slide. But it was worth the experiment, and I will probably do it again, just out of curiosity to see what I can get. I don’t have a problem with images that are not realistic, and odd looking colors can add a certain charm, but it is not sufficient to make a good image. But it is a nice experiment, and it can help investigate where my preferences are, and help develop a personal style.


All photos were shot with my Leica M2 and the Tele-Elmarit 1:2.8/90mm lens. The film was developed by me in Digibase C-41 chemicals, and scanned on the Epson V800.

Thanks for reading!


2 thoughts on “Cross-processing Precisa Slide Film: First Experiment

  1. These are most excellent. If you don’t like the images you can give them to me and I will gladly and proudly say I photographed them..
    haha… just kidding. But seriously, they are wonderful.

    1. Thanks Dev, I appreciate that. I am not sure if and what I like about them. I just realized that I didn’t like my first results when I started with film, because they looked different from what I was used to. That might be the case here, I need some time to get used to a different look, and then decide if I like it.

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