I’ve just started a film test in preparation for my trip to Italy next month– the two films in consideration are Kodak Ektar 100 and Agfa Precia CT cross processed. Thus far, most of the artworks from my current series A New Eden are either XPRO (cross processed- E6 film in C41 chem) or expired film. However- after much testing here on FR I have recently fallen in love with the new Kodak Ektar …SO I decided to do a quick comparison test and find out: does the XPRO effect really have to be actual cross-processed film?
So what do YOU think? Look at the snapshots below and see if you can pick out the one that is the Agfa Precia CT XPRO…only one is true XPRO…the others are all Kodak Ektar in Photoshop using Alien Skin Exposure 2!
Think you have the right answer? Then give a listen to the Audio portion of this post for additional thoughts on cross processing / Xpro… as well as the answer!
Please click on the logo to listen to the audio.
When you finish with part one, click here to listen to part 2!
6 thoughts on “Is Cross Processing or XPRO Dead?”
The reason we do XPRO is not solely the final effect. We do it for the unpredictability and fun of trying out different films and exposure techniques to get the most interesting pictures.
Trust me, you’re not the first person to figure out you can photoshop something to look like XPRO. By no means is it dead due to your latest awesome discovery. If we just photoshop all our pictures, where is the fun and the unpredictability? Surely photoshop is great for the few pictures we’d like to have a bit more of a punch, but do you really think a medium will die? We love XPRO because it’s fun and interesting, not because we want people to look at our picture and go “Hey, is that Agfa Precisa CT? This guy is AWESOME!”
James- I agree with the unpredictability that Xpro can provide, I have referred to the as “the joy of imperfection” for many years now and I am also very aware that I am not the first to suggest that Photoshop can give qualities like Xpro… I figured that out back in 1995! My point was rather does it make sense to do Xpro if you are using a hybrid process like scanning film due to the translation in scanning and ease of control in Photoshop… as I said if I were still working in a complete analog process I would of course encourage Xpro as a viable option for any artist.
I feel that it is the final print that matters, whether it is traditional Xpro or “digital” Xpro. My point is not will Xpro die literally but rather what will give you the photographic artist the most options to explore all creative possibilities… again if you are working in full analog and love Xpro great… if you are working in a hybrid process and love Xpro great but also realize you have options.
PS- Meanwhile, I still have not decided on which film I am shooting in Italy!
Note: there is a part 2 to this post so please click here to listen:
Viva la Revolution- Stephen
I wouldn’t bother cross processing if I could control the result in PS, I tried it once it bored me, the whole process felt unrewarding and pointless, anyway cross processing isn’t that hard an effect to get in PS if software was going to kill it off it probably would have about 10 years ago!
10 years would be a bit of a digital stretch… I’ve been hybrid/ digital with my studio for 9 years now (my digital days actually date back 15 years but that was more experimentation that image making) and have only seen in the last year or two digital processes that I feel come close to XPRO. The Exposure 2 by Alien Skin is really quite good (and yes fun) and has amazing control or no control if you like. In the end if the process matters to you you will of course do XPRO the traditional way… I find myself doing a bit of both.
Stephen, I totally agree.