Let's Talk Film Soup

Over the last couple of months, film soup has been at the top of my head. Back in August I made a reel showing me souping and the results, and someway, somehow, it went viral. Then when I did a recap reel in December of my film soup, again, I had another one go viral. It's kind of weird going viral. I don't soup my film and experiment with the thought of, oh this will get me to go viral! I soup and experiment because it's fun and quite truthfully I love it. Now, with all the views (ummm millions of people have seen my work?! what?!?) came a lot of love, but also a fair amount of hate. I mean, some people REALLY do not like film soup. Which, ok, fair enough. I don't like all the art I see either. We all have different opinions, things we like, views, etc. It's part of the beauty of life.

That said, I wanted to talk a bit about why I film soup and why I love it. To me, film soup is about letting go of the control. In a world where I so desperately want to be in control, it's such a freeing feeling to put myself in a position where I'm not really in control of what happens and IT'S OK. I can try my best to recreate, but after souping many rolls, the biggest lesson I've learned is no two rolls are the same. I've even done the same film stock with the exact same recipe, and the results have been completely different. So I learned, let go. Try new things, or don't, repeat a recipe, but the results are out of my control. I control what I shot, the composition the film stock, the ingredients, but ultimately it's not up to me. And that can feel soooo dang good.

Now, don't get me wrong, the first time I souped film I was FREAKING out. After I dropped that roll in the water it took everything in me to not immediately fish it out. It's a practice and a lesson. Especially for those of us who feel like we need to be in control at all times. But once I got my images back, it was all worth it. Did I get exactly what I thought I would get with those first rolls? Absolutely not. Did I get images I love to this day? Absolutely. I was hooked from that day forward. I wanted to test recipes, film stocks, composition. All of it. I wanted to try it all. It became a personal project for me, make art with film soup. And I did just that.

Now today, I'm at a point where I incorporate it into my sessions. Clients will ask, are you going to do that thing where you make the film go all crazy!? I love that I can give clients something so different and refreshing to hang on their walls, their family in art. It's such a joy for me and I'm so proud of it. I'm never going to force it on someone. If you don't like film soup, that's ok. You can go on to the next thing. But I'm going to keep doing what makes me happy. Keep pushing past the fear of will anything turn out. I'm going to keep going and maybe it'll inspire you to try it as well. I've got a Film Soup Guide if you want more ideas on souping, recipes, tips & tricks and more. I'd love to have you join me in the fun!


*A quick note. Do not send film soup to your lab with out checking and talking with them first. Most labs do not accept film soup as it can gunk up the machines and sometimes alter chemicals. I use AGX Film Lab for all my film soup developing.