Shooting Expired Film from 1969
fter finding seven brand new (meaning brand new to the year 1969 and unopened since then) rolls of Kodak Tri-X Pan 400 120 film, I knew I had to shoot a roll.
Watch the YouTube video below for a full overview.
I carefully opened a roll that has been sitting perfectly still for the past 52 years, while storing the other six (along with a roll of Fuji Pro 400H) in my freezer. It smelled funny, and the paper backing for the roll matched the yellow and green of the box. You know how sometimes you just get a feeling that something you're about to do is going to work out perfectly? That's how I felt with this, and I was SO correct.
This was the first time I had shot film that was this expired, and I had always heard the rule that you should overexpose expired film by one stop for every decade of expiration. 52 years = 5 stops overexposed. I had also heard that film stored properly over that time doesn't need to be so overexposed. I had no information about how these seven rolls were stored, but they seemed pristine. As an ISO 400 film, shooting at 5 stops overexposed would be to shoot at ISO 12, but since it looked to be in such good shape, I chose to meter most of my shots at ISO 25, four stops overexposed.
As you can see, I exposed the film just about perfectly, and it was in REMARKABLE shape. No significant cloudiness to the film, and the grain is just so loveable.
To see more results of what it's like to shoot expired Kodak Tri-X Pan 400 120 film from 1969, watch my YouTube video above where I show all 15 photos from the roll!
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