Lately I have found myself increasingly reaching for color film rather than black and white. I think probably because of all the Developing Adventures articles, I am a little tired of looking at monochrome film. Plus it’s spring and there are so many colors popping around me, so in this article I am going to share some of my results with Lomography Color Negative 400.
My Results with Lomography Color Negative 400
I have really been enjoying the look of Lomography’s color negative film as I demonstrated in my article about their 800 speed film. While it is quite a bit more saturated than Kodak Portra, I think it suits the colors I have been seeing lately, especially around my yard.
What I like about this film is that it has a really nice dynamic range. In the example below, you can see the original photo was under exposed, (I know the photo is not a good one lol just an example), but I was able to lift the exposure without too much detail lost as happens with most color negative films.
While I think this film is a bit too saturated, that can be lowered in post if you prefer it. I happen to like it at the moment. I also like that I can purchase packs of this film from Lomo’s Amazon store for the same price as their website, so I can just include it in my orders when I need film. The downside is that you have to buy it in a 3 pack. I am not aware of it being sold in single rolls anywhere.
I have also really been enjoying developing color film, so I think I will be shooting a lot more of it this year. Stay tuned.
Until next time, stay motivated and keep shooting.
15 thoughts on “Lomography Color Negative 400 – the Saturated Sister of Portra?”
Buying a scanning rig was my holdout – but I have a tripod, Canon DSLR, and a 100mm macro lens, so apparently I already bought the expensive parts!
I do worry that I’ll get a huge backlog to develop (cue the mental image of boxes of undeveloped rolls a la Vivian Maier).
Yes LOL sometimes I wonder if she never processed her film simply because she was just too backed up LOL I scan mine using an Epson v800 my mom got me before I knew about DSLR scanning. It’s probably a lot faster to do with a DSLR than my scanner
I sat looking at one of her B&W books last night while watching “How-to” videos on developing and home-scanning, so I was inspired 😀
She’s one of my favorites. I identify with a lot of things I’ve read about her. Are you thinking of processing both color and black and white or starting with B&W first?
B&W first. I looked at Alex Ludyck’s blog for developer ideas, and Rodinal looks like my ideal choice (don’t have to store liters of it, jack of all trades, etc.), and he seemed to like it with faster films that aren’t T-grain (Double-X and HP5 are my favorites right now).
Yea I’ve heard tons of people use Rodinal. I think it has a grungy look. I haven’t tried it myself yet. I mostly use D76 because it lasts so long
My film lab (Memphis Film Lab) uses X-Tol (and I like the results), but mixing up 5 L with a 1 year shelf-life seems like a recipe for wasted developer as my first foray.
I’ve seen some D-76 kits that involve making 4 L at a time. Do you use those or a kit that only makes say 1 L at a time? I’m going to for less stored chemicals right now.
I use this and make a gallon of stock solution . I pour into a 600ml bottle at a time and reuse that for 10 rolls then replace until the gallon is gone. But I shoot a lot of black and white film so it’s been worth it for me. I’m not sure how much you use.
I’ll add it to my B&H wishlist that already includes tank, reels, etc. Once they get back to shipping orders after the holiday, it’s full steam ahead on developing!
Any other good resources or links I should look at? I have the Ilford “common problems” link and the Massive Dev Chart.
That’s mainly it. Once you practice you’ll be able to do it in auto pilot. One tip Massive dev chart doesn’t show you how to agitate each different film so I always look at the directions on the film box and enter it myself.
I agree about using oversaturated colors for spring; I’ve been using Ektachrome for just such a reason (and now I hear you can push that 1 stop to 200 and get brilliant results!).
I love how the curtain in your second shot has a strong blue cast to contrast with the red and pink.
The bright blue house looks like it comes from a suburban neighborhood envisioned by Tim Burton.
How does Lomo 400 treat skin tones? My friends have very light, red-tinted skin and saturated films like Ektar make them look like beets.
I need to try Ektachrome. I took a couple photos of my fiancé and the skin tones look fine to me. They’re a bit warm but you can adjust color in post
That’s heartening! I’ve been ignoring fast color films for no good reason, so I’ll have to give Lomo 400 a try. I’m very satisfied with the slow color films (ProImage, Ektachrome, etc) so I’ve just stuck with them.
On another note, thank you for helping motivate me to start developing film at home. Reading your blog and following your community-spotlight guests (like Aloy Anderson and David Mihaly) has shown me the chemistry isn’t that mystical (it’s just light sensitive).
Sending 10-20 rolls a month out to be developed is starting to cost a lot, so the ~$200 starting cost for chemicals, glassware, and a light pad for scanning seems like a drop in the bucket.
Thank you. That means a lot to know I’ve helped someone. It was the same for me. Sending film out was getting to be way to expensive. Especially because I do these blogs so I had more than $300 a month worth in developing and buying film. The downside now though is the strain of developing and scanning it all myself has been too much stress. My goal for the year has been to shoot less film LOL not going well so far. I just can’t stop.