How Does Film ACTUALLY Work? (It's MAGIC) [Photos and Development] - Smarter Every Day 258

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  • SmarterEveryDay
    SmarterEveryDayVor Monat

    I tried to find a definitive video on the internet that explained how film works. I couldn't find that video.... so I decided to make it. I called Indie Film Lab and they were all about it. I love film photography and would love for you to try it. They're at

  • William Gonder

    William Gonder

    Vor 5 Tage

    This brought me back to my High School days when I took a class on photography and we developed black and white film. I can remember popping the cap of my first roll in the pitch black room and then winding it up onto one of those reals to be developed. There truly is something magic that can never be captured in the digital world.

  • so steve

    so steve

    Vor 8 Tage

    always wondered,how someone invent this kind of process

  • so steve

    so steve

    Vor 8 Tage

    thanks for the explenation,my dad was a photograph and we both made the photos in the dark room,now im older my intrest where triggerd but i cant find a way that explained to me how it actually works

  • TB-Sur ron

    TB-Sur ron

    Vor 9 Tage

    This has me thinking if film gains weight once exposed with particles.

  • morech11


    Vor 13 Tage

    @CleverWoodenRhino the red room comes later in the process when you are trying to develop the photo on light-sensitive paper using a tool similar to overhead projector. The dim red light is not enough to substantially develop the light-sensitive photo paper and the negatives of the film are already developed, washed, fixed and dry, they can be safely handled in full light at this point, so no damage there.

  • M E
    M EVor 2 Stunden

    *Sees a bunch of gears and pulleys* "Alright nobody say anything I can figure this out" 😂

  • Vissal Mathew
    Vissal MathewVor 5 Stunden

    I am a camera collector, and this video has given one more reason to appreciate the process of taking images on film. I agree that the sense of anticipation after you have shot an image makes you feel like you have created something new. Kudos to SmarterEveryDay for bringing out this very educative and inspiring video.

  • Jim Bo
    Jim BoVor 5 Stunden

    I still wear a mechanical watch, all springs, gears, and an escapement mechanism. Everything can be seen, everything understood. Its construction made by an artisan, a human, whose workmanship is displayed on my wrist and someday on my son's wrist. The lack of silicon, battery, and quartz takes me to a time when life seemed more real, more warm, more genuine, as it was in 1970s America.

  • Loren Ryssman
    Loren RyssmanVor 6 Stunden

    Back, when I still did film, I wondered what C-41 processing looked like; now I know. Thanks Briefly, my thoughts as to what's so special about silver based film photography: 1) the process involves hands-on craftsmanship, and produces a tangible piece of work; 3) the recent increased interest, is mostly due to a degree of nostalgia (e.g. baby-boomers reflecting on their younger years when photography was only film); 4) silver based photography was not the first photographic technology, and will eventually takes it's place alongside earlier processes.

  • Jim Bo
    Jim BoVor 6 Stunden

    Like any art form before the digital age, it took more effort and talent. Today, whether it's photography, music, or graphics, anyone can cheat by cleaning up their lack of effort with an app.

  • Tyson Matanich
    Tyson MatanichVor 8 Stunden

    If you think film is magic, then go print and develop your own black and white photo. Watching the image slowly appear on a sheet of white paper in the tray of developer is both magical and satisfying.

  • Tyson Matanich
    Tyson MatanichVor 8 Stunden

    I was surprised to hear they were using fluorescent lights in a darkroom 🤦‍♂️

  • Blalack77
    Blalack77Vor 11 Stunden

    I love to learn. It's humbles your intelligence ego to learn something you didn't know. I tend to think I'm relatively smart and know a little about a lot and a lot about a little but I'm still learning a lot of new stuff on every video I watch from this channel.

  • Taldaran
    TaldaranVor 12 Stunden

    It's great that this is explained to the digital generation. When I was in Jr High, we took photography classes where you would develop your own photos and film by hand. We just did black and white of course to begin, but it was an amazing experience.

  • YashMeer Vlogs
    YashMeer VlogsVor 18 Stunden

    That machine is modern technique compare here in the Philippines .

  • Application User
    Application UserVor 19 Stunden

    Why in the world would anyone digitize a film image? I do all my stuff either on slide film or I develop my black and white negative film as slides. No digital for me. You of course are free to do as you wish. I just think you're cheating yourself. I hope this lab returns your film to you. A lot of companies don't so they can mine your film for silver. I think the film is the creation and belongs to the shooter.

  • Zack Wilkerson
    Zack WilkersonVor 22 Stunden

    I thought it was funny but I don't think he "deserved that" in any way. He asked what they would use the night vision goggles. Not why they would use them.

  • Vikman Photography
    Vikman PhotographyVor Tag

    Still shooting film for weddings (35mm) and specialty portraits (4x5 view camera)

  • Alexander Bashta III
    Alexander Bashta IIIVor Tag

    Awesome Video and info. AND I ordered my grandson a kiwico subscription, so thanks

  • Jacob Wolf
    Jacob WolfVor Tag


  • Ryan Chen
    Ryan ChenVor Tag

    I learned my photography over a Minolta X-700 in the 90s before I had my first DSLR in 2007(Sony Alpha A100 with CCD) and currently still owns it without intention to replace it with anything else> I get what you said in the beginning as it was how I felt like an apprentice.

  • Farley Craig
    Farley CraigVor Tag

    I love the OHIO shirt! Awesome video!

  • Victor S
    Victor SVor Tag

    thank you for making and showing the movie. Thats really magic

  • Mustafa Tasrali
    Mustafa TasraliVor Tag

    28:37 and you always need one "C:/ disk" backup. and a good Local network

  • David Stewart
    David StewartVor Tag

    I see where you are going here, and I agree. I always feel more creative when I use my analog camera. I own a Cannon AE1 program and have used it for well over 30 years. But I also have to admit I rarely use this camera anymore because of the cost associated with this camera: purchase of the film, and the processing charges. In any case this is a great video. Thanks

  • 感靈陽
    感靈陽Vor 2 Tage

    No doubt film extinct.

  • MAN Network
    MAN NetworkVor 2 Tage

    Man this same debate runs wild in the audio world recording using tape vs digital ADAT.

  • john rus
    john rusVor 2 Tage

    Meh, as a photographer you can care less about the "feel" of film. It's a tool, not for giving you warm fuzzies. That is what your end result should do. Film to me is relegated to creative photography or simply shooting with old lenses. Film is completely obsolete and only comeback it has is among the hipsters who are more concerned about being cool than taking a good pic. Sorry if I sound calloused, but I started out on film. I still have a film body, but it's a tool. Not a cup of cappuccino.

  • James Bruzgis
    James BruzgisVor 2 Tage

    Awesome stuff as usual!! I love your brain. The moment when you stopped everything to learn how the machine moves was great! I’m the same way!

  • Rob O'Brien
    Rob O'BrienVor 2 Tage

    Thank you so much for this video!! I got into film a little over a year ago, and now use my film cameras as often or more than my digitals! I love the excitement of developing my black and white at home, and have always wondered what happened/happens in those labs.

  • Ace45015
    Ace45015Vor 2 Tage

    Film photography is what i got my start on with the hobby side,Canon AE-1 I now own an old Nikon FE and two Nikon Digitals. But the mechanical of the film camera is something i love,that and the mystery of no previews

  • Geo/Lisa Drag-Racing
    Geo/Lisa Drag-RacingVor 2 Tage

    Just shared this video. i use this service & people ask me about sending out old rolls of film all the time, but then, they never do. i just don't do a good job of alleviating the fear they have about losing these memories. Although it doesn't seem to be the reason behind this film; it really highlights the company, the process & the fact that lots and lots of people are still getting real film developed every day! Indie Film Lab is great! Fuji frontier sp 3000 is amazing, Film photography is the past, present AND future! Great Video THANKS -

  • Pavel Makovinyi
    Pavel MakovinyiVor 2 Tage

    And it can't be geo-tagged! 😉

  • rey delapaz
    rey delapazVor 2 Tage

    i didnt know film is making a comeback. what i do know is camera makers are crazy with the mirrorless sheet and killing the SLR/DSLR totally

  • TSI
    TSIVor 2 Tage

    The mechanical indexing system you noticed at minute 16:18 is called a “walking beam”

  • Diogo Carvalho
    Diogo CarvalhoVor 2 Tage

    Film can be recreated as it has been proven by Steve Yedlin. It's just freaking hard to do so.

  • FirstName LastName
    FirstName LastNameVor 2 Tage

    They just do not have microcontrast in them. Disable that default feature on your Canon digital camera and you will have much better photos. However, most people like microcontrast at first. Like most people buy sparkly shining flaring monitors and then whey try to use it on sunny day and understand that have they done and go into the deep depression and their eyes are already burned out. But nobody cares, product already sold. Same thing ruins digital photography, I'm looking at you, Canon! Remember, people, ANY processing lead to information loss. ANY filter make your photo worse. No exceptions, that's the law of physics. This rule is more strong than the conservation of energy. Nobody cares, though (

  • moa'taz Ahmed
    moa'taz AhmedVor 3 Tage

    That Hana thou really cute

  • Antonio Hernandez
    Antonio HernandezVor 3 Tage

    I found this website that sold film cameras and even some disposable ones, i thought it would be neat to try one day for nostalgia but i'm not sure where to go to get the pictures developed............

  • DoomTrain
    DoomTrainVor 3 Tage

    One thing I noticed when looking to upgrade my PC about 14 years ago was that ATI (AMD) had better colors than Nvidia. I wonder if they take into account all that kinda thing too. Not sure if it's true anymore though.

  • Marsha Malinsky
    Marsha MalinskyVor 3 Tage

    I worked in a photo lab back in the nineties. I always said 35mm was the best. Can't beat the clear colorful pictures. It's coming back thank you 👍🤩

  • Mateusz Pawlik

    Mateusz Pawlik

    Vor 2 Tage

    120 is even better, and chimney viewfinders...

  • Dylan Aguilar
    Dylan AguilarVor 4 Tage

    Beautiful video as always

  • mio
    mioVor 4 Tage

    Has smarter every day some a video on crypto?

  • Luke Leslie
    Luke LeslieVor 4 Tage

    I just watched this at .5 speed hahahaha it was actually very entertaining lol

  • Amos Kittelson
    Amos KittelsonVor 4 Tage

    @Destin, would be great to know next time you're in Sioux Falls!

  • dwindeyer
    dwindeyerVor 4 Tage

    34:23 Objectively, the digital shot is better in almost every way, but I do like the aesthetic of the film shot

  • Nathan Jerico
    Nathan JericoVor 4 Tage

    Next step, make a pinhole camera and see the physics about that (im just curious)

  • Vipul Malik
    Vipul MalikVor 4 Tage

    she is cute 😊

  • Iam Nobodi
    Iam NobodiVor 4 Tage

    I have always wondered how film works. Never thought I would find out. Thanks for this awesome video.

  • DaffyDuc69
    DaffyDuc69Vor 4 Tage

    Digitized is a sample of the image. So much of it is lost forever when you take a digital photo. Film has all of that depth, because it isn't a sample, it's as close to the copy of the original as you can get.

  • Naman
    NamanVor 4 Tage

    1.4k dislikes disgusting people

  • jared oresi
    jared oresiVor 4 Tage

    what is film? what is you talking about bro

  • ericduan19
    ericduan19Vor 4 Tage

    Shooting on film is still a thing in the movie industry. On a very small scale, of course, but from time to time some directors will choose to shoot on film. Film has an observable unique look because (in digital terms) it's pixel quality is different from digital image. Back in film school, we still have to learn how to shoot on film & operate real film editing machines. In this day and age of digital film making, many film makers like to "run & gun" during their production. Well, if you're shooting on film, its cost always gives you second thoughts of your decisions & you'll plan meticulously beforehand.

  • GD3Media
    GD3MediaVor 5 Tage

    The algorithm is tripping me out now. I'm sitting here editing my film photos and this video pops up as I'm watching Sopranos highlights.

  • TWI99
    TWI99Vor 5 Tage

    This huys are amazing!

  • Foolish3art
    Foolish3artVor 5 Tage

    You’re genuinely interested in keeping film alive. So thank you! You should make a video for music mediums as well.

  • Lewis Whitfield
    Lewis WhitfieldVor 5 Tage

    This is cool but should also do a video on how to print from film to a photo paper without a scanner, we had dark rooms in high school and you place the film in this projector type thing, set the aperture and square the light beam up to the size of paper and flash the light through the film for a second, then you put the photo paper you just exposed a projected image of the film into in 3 chemicals and watch it form like a Polaroid camera

  • VitaminFloyd
    VitaminFloydVor 5 Tage

    RIP Kodachrome 1935 - 2007! Latitude unmatched!

  • Heime101
    Heime101Vor 5 Tage

    When did J roc start making DElevel videos 😆

  • TJ Drums RHCP
    TJ Drums RHCPVor 5 Tage

    27:30 Ross to Destin: ''Yes sir.'' 27:37 Destin to Ross: ''Yes sir.''

  • KCJbomberFTW
    KCJbomberFTWVor 5 Tage

    My fiancé can do what ever she wants designing our wedding but I’m making sure we only hire the best film cameras 😁

  • Babayaga
    BabayagaVor 5 Tage

    I love how he records the whole thing on a digital camera😂

  • Babayaga


    Vor 5 Tage

    @joseph debbah I’m just joking dude

  • joseph debbah

    joseph debbah

    Vor 5 Tage

    he was talking about taking PHOTOS with film cameras not vid....honestly I don't do neither but as you can see some ppl do like it...

  • Self-Education Methodology
    Self-Education MethodologyVor 5 Tage

    Improve yourself and make yourself proud 🥇

  • d3aph
    d3aphVor 5 Tage

    Kinda in the same boat as Rod with the AE-1. Instead of being gifted one, I found one sitting in a gutter on the side of a road. Surprised it still worked after I got the old lens off and put another one on it. Still haven't gotten it figured out though.

  • Andrew McLarty
    Andrew McLartyVor 5 Tage

    I was just casually watching and said to myself, “wow, that’s Jackson Square. I was walking through there three days ago.” Destin: “this is a shot from my trip to New Orleans.”

    BRIAN WHARVor 5 Tage

    nice one for making this

  • dezider tocka
    dezider tockaVor 5 Tage

    Whole crystal is developed. Not just part of it.

  • Anthoney King
    Anthoney KingVor 5 Tage

    Hiya Just Subs to you awesome Vlogs saw your one showing the see thru Carburettor that was pure OMG thank you

  • radar
    radarVor 5 Tage


  • Ankit Kasi
    Ankit KasiVor 6 Tage

    This video inspired me to take up film photography... I found my dad's 25 year old canon... With a 15 year old film inside... And I got those developed and it was some awesome pictures from winter in Feb 2006... Thanks! 😅

  • Gigi Quillian
    Gigi QuillianVor 6 Tage

    Let me tell you how much I HATE digital anything... I've lost 4 smart phones in past 8 years, each had pictures of my grandkids from the day they were born and nearly daily thereafter. The oldest is 14. All of his childhood photos are gone as are his cousins and the rest of them. The youngest is 6. I refuse to take photos with my new, first and only IPhone I've ever owned. The cloud and Google captured about 1/20th of my old photos but none of the oldest child pre 6years old. Devastated!!! I have every single film photo taken prior to that over 40 years. Too bad I wasn't as prolific a picture taker for those first 40 years. Hate digital. And don't start on me about not putting the digital on a PC...I haven't owed one since 1999.

    SID SIMONVor 6 Tage

    How much are you getting and from whom to promote film??? Film is not making a comeback, it's got terminal stage 4 obsolescence and is hiring you to be it's positive outlook.

  • Bernt Sønvisen
    Bernt SønvisenVor 6 Tage

    This was really great! Nice to see that good people make business from photographic film again. 😊👍🏻

  • Minhajul Abedin
    Minhajul AbedinVor 6 Tage

    This is one of the coolest door I've ever seen.

  • Scott M
    Scott MVor 6 Tage

    Destin, thank you for covering the chemistry of film...great details!!! could you please get into a local darkroom and make a print that you have to dodge and burn to enhance...there is even more magic beyond the film negative! bonus points if you do an alt process like Lith or Bromoil, or cyanotype and Gumoil or Vandyke Brown! then get into Toning with Selenium and Gold, look at split tone goes deep...later you could do Mordencage printing (something a digital camera can never duplicate), that softens the silvered emulsion but keeps the light parts of the image attached, making a shadow curtain you can move and shape....using chemistry to make art is awesome....

  • Gading
    GadingVor 6 Tage

    You know what? When we're looking at film photo, that nostalgic feeling always come.

  • Matt Longacre
    Matt LongacreVor 6 Tage

    Thank you so much for this video, photography is just not the same since it was digitized. I grew up doing slide photography when scuba diving, I always looked forward to the friday before the end of the trip. The dive shop would showcase all of the best photos from the week in a slideshow put to music. It was a very unique experience and it was sometimes the first time you would see your photos and it truly was magical. Being able to see the photos as you take them is convenient to discover issues right away; however, I feel it also takes away from the overall experience of photography. I am building a dark room again to get back into black and white photography, but I may explore utilizing indiefilmlab to do some color again as well. Thanks again for the video!

  • Chi-town57
    Chi-town57Vor 6 Tage

    Wow first a video on carbs with a see through now another thing I am very familiar with - film. Not only did I grow up with film cameras having a Kodak Brownie as a kid then going into hobby photography as a teen with 35mm SLRs and having my own darkroom but also working for a professional photography company in Chicago in 1975/76 as a darkroom technician and studio photographer before I enlisted in the Air Force. I was supposed to be going into a photographic field after basic training but was switched and put into air-to-air and air-to-ground missiles before we finished basic but I still continued my photo hobby and was able to use the base hobby center's darkroom at my first base in Las Vegas (Nellis AFB). Later I went to other bases that didn't have photo hobby centers so I fell into using the consumer developing places both local and mail-in. When I worked for the place in Chicago we both manually developed and had Kodak machines that we fed the film into at the beginning in the dark and the processing of the slide or negative films were done by the machine and the dried film came out the opposite end in the light where we could cut the roll into strips of so many frames. Most of the jobs were professional and advertising shoots so we would contact print the developed negatives and the customer cirled which ones they wanted and what size and we printed them with an enlarger one at a time. I loved working with film and I still have film cameras but just recently found that films are once again being produced and that developing processes are coming back so I may revive that old hobby of film photography and teach my grandkids a little about an alternative way to take photos not just with a phone or digital camera.

  • onsitestudios
    onsitestudiosVor 6 Tage

    Brought back a lot of memories from the 80s when I worked at the nations’s (maybe the world’s oldest photo lab, E. B. Luce Corporation in Worcester. We had a dip and dunk for E6 and roller transport for C41 film development. Our dip and dunk machine also used nitrogen bubbles for agitation, but because we developed so much film, gas canisters ran out too quickly, so we had a big tank of liquid nitrogen. My job was mostly making large photo murals (up to 52” (the largest material width) x 16’ (the width of my darkroom’ in my darkroom). I used a Durst 2,000 watt enlarger that could handle negatives and chromes up to 8”x10”.

  • André Hak
    André HakVor 6 Tage

    Can we get a shoutout for the edit of this video? 't Is amazing!

  • Angry Kittens
    Angry KittensVor 6 Tage

    Ah, the 90s. When photos were rare semi-precious things. When every time you get photos developed, it's always an event. And you always find that one photo where your finger was on the lens or it got overexposed. And you can't even remember what it was supposed to look like.

  • Emile Haas
    Emile HaasVor 6 Tage

    This was fascinating

  • Jim Wilson
    Jim WilsonVor 7 Tage

    There’s something I don’t quite understand about the video’s assertion: Indie doesn’t actually print photos, but instead they scan the film and convert it into digital photos, which may also involve digital alteration/touching up. So, if even film photos become digital, what’s the basis for the argument that film photos produce better quality images than totally digital photos? Is it because the film is able to pickup more photons than a digital camera? If so, isn’t the quality of the film image reduced or limited as it becomes processed (first through the scanner’s limits on what it can pickup, then through the conversion of that image to manageable digital files, then through the screen quality of the device you view the digital image on)? Is the scanner producing better images than a high quality digital camera? And is the scanner touchup software better than the software used for high quality digital photos? I’m not arguing against anything, but I legitimately didn’t see the video present how digitized film images are objectively superior in quality to purely digital images, whereas I did see plenty of subjective claims for superiority of film based on the experience one has while using or processing it.

  • Alex Vidrine
    Alex VidrineVor 7 Tage

    what kind of microscope is that? like the model not the type

  • Ken A
    Ken AVor 7 Tage

    I recently used my SLR camera that I bought in 1970. The pictures were good, but I would have to get a part-time job to develop them.

  • Mike Aubrey
    Mike AubreyVor 7 Tage

    That developing machine is pretty incredible. But I also have to wonder how much of its functionality could be duplicated with a raspberry pi , acrylic tanks, & extruded aluminum...

  • Timetraveler
    TimetravelerVor 7 Tage

    but i still didn't understand how it's possible to convert from negative to positive coloured image. it's like converting from gray scale to color without the rgb channels... so how the negative shot can contain the RGB values/channels? can i convert a negative photo from internet to coloured? because the entire process in the dark room looks like useless if the real machine that convert to color from inverted frame it's the "scanner" or that machine connected to the computer.. infact i'm curious to know what happens if you directly put the roll in the scanner without the washing process.

  • S4H4ND
    S4H4NDVor 7 Tage

    I think the digital baseball guy looks better. All grainy gives a fake feel of realness, but it's cool. I mean I can't say "Oh Analog Is So Good" because I haven't used one yet and this video is actually all in digital so can't really tell :))

  • Ken Kris
    Ken KrisVor 7 Tage

    Hard to believe at almost 50 I didn't even know how filmed really worked, but used it for most of my life! Thank you for the interesting video and hard work you do. I'll never forget the great smell photo processing stores had, something kids today will never experience. It was always so exciting to drop off a role and wait for it to be developed, you never knew how the photos would come out. Great memorie.

  • Gilbatrar
    GilbatrarVor 7 Tage

    This was so fun to learn about! Thanks Destin

  • Alberto Alfonso
    Alberto AlfonsoVor 7 Tage

    Awesome video

  • Anton Jurun
    Anton JurunVor 7 Tage

    There's a Kodak ad from a national geographic in the 70s of a football player in an empty stadium. It has an amazing display of the quality and detail they could achieve.

  • marc guidry
    marc guidryVor 7 Tage

    I had to use a church key bottle opener and a dark black cloth bag to remove the film from its roll and on a into a real then into the can.

  • marc guidry
    marc guidryVor 7 Tage

    I spent a lot of time in the ships photo lab while I was in the US Navy. Used a lot of Kodachrome and Triexpan film. This was the most satisfying job I ever had.

  • TreasureFreak
    TreasureFreakVor 7 Tage

    This is the best video on film development I've seen. I've watched so many looking to really understand how the development process works chemically, most videos are either too simple or too convoluted for my weasel brain. How did I just discover this channel?

  • dragon fly
    dragon flyVor 7 Tage

    check out daguerreotype

  • Sean Thomas
    Sean ThomasVor 7 Tage

    I love 35mm! I have been shooting officially since 1984. Got my first Nikon FA. I still have it. It still works perfectly. It has been around the world twice with me!

  • Roy F-W
    Roy F-WVor 7 Tage

    Man, this has brought back memories. My first job was in a store that did this kind of thing. Our developing machine was much more compac and fed the roll through continuously. Still had to keep the chemestry balanced and the like. Used a Fuji-film scanner that was built in to our printer to print. Still did all the colour correction stuff before printing. We also burnt the photos straight to disk as well as printed them.

  • Teppo Jarvinen
    Teppo JarvinenVor 7 Tage

    If the rolls are dipped like that, the middle parts will spend less time in the solutions than the ends. Judging by the speed (or lack of it) of the movements, the difference will be several seconds. So it cannot be very time sensitive then?

  • Anoop Kumar
    Anoop KumarVor 8 Tage

    Nothing learn about chemical process

  • The Cunundrum Channel
    The Cunundrum ChannelVor 8 Tage

    I was sort of interested in finding out how it is that the different wavelengths of light affected the crystals in such a consistent manner, as how yellow is capture or how we can get greens and blues in the same scene without losing acciracy or sharpness. Also how the crystal dispersion/ratio affected that. Dont get me wrong I loved the video.

  • Hari Prasath
    Hari PrasathVor 8 Tage

    It was literally useful to me

  • Sp1der44
    Sp1der44Vor 8 Tage

    Great stuff Destin - Zooming in on the film with the microscope and seeing the tiny grains was really cool.

  • JJtoob
    JJtoobVor 8 Tage

    That looks like an amazing place to work at. Watching this reminds me that whenever I was near a place that processed photos, mostly the photo booths that used to be somewhere by a supermarket in the country I grew up in, I remember a distinct smell that I figure is the developing chemicals, or maybe it was the film... I never actually figured it out. I wonder if Indie Film Lab smells like that.