I bought my roll of Lomochrome Purple XR100-400 film from Bangkok. It’s an expensive 35mm film, costing roughly SGD20 for 36-exposure.
As the name suggests, this film makes your images purple. It’s kind of cool actually.
How does this film came about?
Lomography Purple is designed to imitate the discontinued Kodak Aerochrome film, which is an infrared-sensitive & false-colour reversal film.
Infrared is a kind of radiation wavelength human eyes are insensitive of (O’level Physics). In the past, Kodak Aerochrome was especially useful in war because it helped to detect camouflage in the war field. It can differentiate between bushes (green) and maybe the enemy.
To see how this film was used, read a famous case here.
Besides being useful for catching camouflage, Aerochrome was also used to detect sick plants. This is because a healthy plant with lots of chlorophyll will give off near-infrared energy. Thus, when a plant gives off less infrared energy, it reflects a possible infestation of insects.
History of film is interesting right?
Note that this film can give different effect under different exposure, ranging from ISO 100 to ISO 400. For example, if you shoot at film speed ISO 100, you might be overexposing the film. If you shoot at ISO 400, you might be underexposing the film.
Since I only had one roll, I didn’t have the chance to play around with the ISO. Furthermore, Emilia shot this Lomochrome Purple on Contax TVS in Taipei, which is an semi-auto camera that decides the ISO based on the bar code on the film cassette.
So, we don’t know what ISO the camera shot at.
Do you like the colour shift?
I am quite disappointed with the purple effect. Having googled around, I see that the purple has the potential to be more intense and saturated.
Our less saturated purple shade might probably be due to exposure issue. The Contax TVS might have decided to shoot it at ISO 100 or 200 or 400.
Furthermore, if you look closely, sometimes the purple shade does not ‘show up’, making the images rather orangy. So, it kind of look like a positive film being cross-processed with C-41. Take a look below:
Overall, I think Lomochrome Purple XR 100-400 is good to try if you want to achieve some funky look. I don’t think people will use it to shoot serious paid work such as wedding, unless the bride and groom requested.
Nonetheless, this film is definitely suitable for people to have fun! Isn’t that what Lomography stands up for? To be funky and cool!
The next time you see this film, be sure to grab a roll because it’s always out of stock. It is available in 35mm and 120mm format.
If I feel rich, I might get one or two rolls to load onto a manual film camera so I can play around with a known ISO.