Copying digital photos onto film

Discussion in 'Misc. Hybrid Discussions' started by Lee Rust, Oct 28, 2017.

  1. Lee Rust

    Lee Rust Member
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    For archival purposes, I was thinking about copying some of my digital photos onto color transparency film, probably 6x9 medium format. My assumption would be to use the 27" iMac 5K Retina display, which I believe is about 14Mp. Has anyone tried something like this?
     
  2. bdial

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    It's an interesting idea, but I'm not sure what the benefit would be. Most of my 20 + year old transparencies show some degradation in the color. I expect that the current stock is somewhat better, but getting the theoretical lifetime from the film is highly dependent on storage conditions.
     
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    Lee Rust

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    Printing digital photos onto paper would be the most obvious archival solution, but I've always enjoyed the brilliance of directly-viewed transparencies (not projected). Before 2007, my color photos were all on positive film and they've stood the test of time pretty well with sleeve storage in stable temps and darkness. Naturally, Kodachromes have fared the best, but I've got Ektachromes and various others that date back to the mid 1960's that have survived without much fading or discoloration. The only long-term failures I've experienced have been with film that was processed by Fotomat in the late 70's.
     
  4. Bob Carnie

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    I am making separation BW negatives(Silver and Inkjet)and then re working for tri colour gum prints...I also am making BW negatives for Silver and Alternative purposes.. I tend to make the Silver gelatin negs for Ilford Warmtone papers, and I make inkjet for Pt pd with gum overhits.

    By making true Black and White silver negatives there is a good chance for people in the future to rework and make prints...( small niche of people but they are out there) Salgado for instance.
     
  5. RalphLambrecht

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    I'd say, You are better of exercising a strict digital backup and archiving system with technology conversions when necessary
     
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    Lee Rust

    Lee Rust Member
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    Bob, it seems you are preparing for the not-so-distant future when conventional color photographic films are no longer available. Very interesting!
    Ralph, I agree that conventional archiving disciplines would be the most practical. For me it's more about the experience of directly viewing a color transparency without intermediary electronics.

    Thanks very much! Perhaps I'll get a chance soon to do some experimenting.
     
  7. Bob Carnie

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    Hi Lee

    I am completely wrapped up with the present, where I am salvaging estates, photo archives, and current photography... This encompases work from today back to glass plates/Tin types over 90 years old. You have kind of hit
    part of my thinking in that with advances in pigment printing like Gum Dichromate and Carbon Transfer we indeed are at a stage where if enough people work on this we can produce a permanent printed record of the first 150 years of photography.
    silver film will last over 100 years(we already know that) so by separating the colour images into the three or four separations, then workers in the future can indeed take film made today and produce full colour pigment prints.
    I still shoot colour negative film , I have never taken a digital image , but yes the day is coming unfortunately where the freezers will be purchased and whole skids of film will be purchased on the last few runs.
     
  8. Sirius Glass

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    Which only last as long as someone is around to continue to operate the strict digital backup and archiving system with technology conversions as necessary. I stick with film and PrintFile pages. Heck even shoe boxes have a history of good preservation.
     
  9. Oren Grad

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    Silver film on polyester base (mostly sheet film), yes. Silver film on cellulose acetate base (most roll films), not necessarily unless special steps are taken.
     
  10. Bob Carnie

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    what special steps do you refer too. My enlarged film is on Ilford ortho 25 film
     
  11. Oren Grad

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  12. Bob Carnie

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  13. jim10219

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    Just put them up on the internet. That's the best archival method. Haven't you heard? Once it's on the 'net, it's out there forever!

    Though seriously, film isn't as archival as people tend to think. The colors tend to fade. The film can melt, get scratched, grow fungus, get lost or stolen, etc. Your best bet for archiving is to store them digitally in multiple places. Have a copy on CD and another copy on the cloud somewhere. Maybe put a copy on an external hard drive or a thumb drive and keep them at a different location. Sure, formats change and old ones become obsolete. But programmers have become aware of the issues that creates and they've gotten really good at maintaining backwards compatibility with things. I mean the .jpeg, something still in use today, was invented over 25 years ago and shows no signs of becoming obsolete. Furthermore, if you're that worried, just save them as a bitmap. Those are uncompressed files that are about as basic as they come. They're basically just a record of every pixels color and location. A million years from now, people will still be able to make sense of them. You could look at the code and rebuild an image without a computer if you needed to.

    So save it digitally in multiple formats in multiple locations, and it may outlast humanity.
     
  14. Oren Grad

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    Ask Harman whether that's on polyester too.

    Detailed info about the issues with film on cellulose acetate base in this publication from the Image Permanence Institute:

    https://www.imagepermanenceinstitute.org/webfm_send/299
     
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