Photographer Exposes Both Sides of Film to Create Stunning Effects

Double Exposed Film

A photographer on TikTok has exposed both sides of a roll of 35mm film to create amazing and unusual pictures.

Based in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Evan Purney is a photographer and content creator who enjoys experimenting with photographic film to produce extraordinary results.

As seen in a TikTok video that racked up 1.2 million views, Purney first shot a roll of film through the wrong side where the emulsion is exposed through the base of the film to achieve a red scale background. Then he moves the film through an empty roll and shot it on the correct side to create uniquely layered images.

@ameyecool Interact for part 2 😊📸 #filmphotography #aesthetic #experimentalart ♬ Fairy Fountain – Super Guitar Bros

The technique is known as “expose both sides” (EBS) and it combines double exposure with red scale photography.

Double Exposed Film

Double Exposed Film

Purney used a Ricoh KR5 Super 2 with an SMC Pentax-FA f2.8 50mm macro lens. For the film, he chose a Fuji Superia Xtra 400 for its vivid blues and greens which he thought would contrast the “redscale” effect well.

“Honestly, the unpredictability of film is why I love it. The amount you can experiment with the process at every step just fascinates me,” Purney tells PetaPixel. “ESB is a really neat process which has been around forever but I haven’t seen a lot of people using it since this photographic film revival.”

It took two attempts and some experimentation with exposure times for Purney to get the results he wanted.

“I was stoked with the results! I tried it once before but didn’t find the effect pronounced enough. This time I made some adjustments to exposure times and was really happy to see the improvement,” he says.

“I shot the redscale side at about 125 ISO (overexposed) and the regular side at about 800 ISO (underexposed). Normally with double exposures, you wanna underexpose by a little bit on one or both exposures, but when shooting ‘redscale’ (through the wrong side) you usually would overexpose by quite a bit (2-3 stops), so I deducted like 0.5 from that. Based on my first attempt adjusted to these values, but it’s definitely something to experiment with.”

Double Exposed Film

Double Exposed Film

Purney is fascinated by the endless possibilities of film photography and aims to set himself apart from other photographers through his use of experimental techniques and practical effects. In another TikTok video, Purney uses his old Nintendo DSI which has a 0.3-megapixel camera on to shoot a set of photos.

More of Purney’s work can be found by visiting his website and Instagram while his photographic experiments and tutorials can be found on TikTok.

Image credits: All photos by Evan Purney.