R&B’s Southside Diner, in Coffee
Yashica Mat 124 w/ Arista Edu 100
As an avid coffee drinker myself, when I was first introduced to the process known as caffenol (using instant coffee and washing soda to develop film), I was captivated —if a little dubious. Firstly, I love the idea that of a household developing and printing agent that can be used without buying any darkroom chemicals. Secondly, I love the idea of marrying process and content so I decided to extend my experimentation to a series on a local diner in Mt. Vernon, OH which offers, in typical diner fashion, free coffee re-fills with all breakfast meals.
All the photos in this series were first developed and then printed in caffenol using a mixture of washing soda, water, and instant coffee. I like the sepia-toned, often cloudy results (both the film and the prints came out this way) that reminds one of the coffee they were made in. And although the process was often frustratingly unpredictable and variable (I wound up making a new batch of coffee developer for every print because of the quick exhaustion), I think that the range of tones, the softness, and the imperfection of the images adds to the effect.
Can’t say that we have much experience with caffenol but we’ve done a couple of successful shots with BWs developed in Tea & Vitamin C! Wanna share your alternate processing methods with us? Send them to us here.
Edit: Here are 3 really good sources on Caffenol processing. Do check them out.
- http://www.caffenol-cookbook.com/ (You can download their extensive caffenol recipe cookbook for free!)