Can You Use Darkroom Paper as Film? Apparently, Yes!

One of the best things about rediscovering old film cameras and technology is the fun experimentation you can do with things that you just can’t do with a digital camera. Once such question that photographer Azriel Knight asked himself in a recent youtube video was if he could use darkroom paper as a replacement for film.

Knight ended up making an entire video about it, and the quick answer is yes, apparently you can use darkroom paper as a replacement for film. It, of course, comes with some caveats, and really there are few reasons why you would actually ever want to do something like this. But if you are someone who enjoys tooling around and playing with things just for the fun of it, this could be an exciting project.

In his testing Knight first attempted the process with an old Minolta SRT 35mm camera. Surprisingly he was able to get a pretty good exposure with his first attempt, and the resulting paper negative looks as expected. The issue with 35mm is that the frame is so small, so following the success with that camera, he upgraded to a Kodak camera using 116 film (a little bigger than 120 film), which resulted in larger images.

Overall, as noted above, the process (assuming you have a darkroom) is pretty straight forward. Knight notes one reason you may wish to try this is to find light leaks in your camera. Beyond that, we are having a hard time finding a practical reason for this, but as we noted above, just as a fun experiment to kill some time this look pretty sweet!

Anthony Thurston

Anthony is a Portland, Oregon based Boudoir Photographer specializing in a dark, moody style that promotes female body positivity, empowerment, and sexuality. Besides The Phoblographer, he also reviews gear and produces his own educational content on his website.