Creative Collective 041: Creative Faded Exposures

I love making retro faded-film-like looks on Fujifilm cameras using the multiple-exposure feature. I have created a number of Film Simulation Recipes which utilize double-exposures to achieve a faded aesthetic. Some of these Recipe are Faded Negative, Faded Color, Vintage Color Fade, Faded Monochrome, and Split-Toned B&W. This type of Recipe isn’t nearly as popular as the “regular” ones that don’t use multiple exposures, and I’m pretty sure it’s because these are a lot more difficult to use. They are way less convenient and practical; however, they can be a good challenge and a lot of fun, and you’ll achieve results that a fairly unique.

I didn’t come up with a new double-exposure Recipe, but I did come up with a slight variation to this concept that I thought I’d share with you. If you are looking for something creative to try, this might just be what you are looking for. In any event, you’re sure to make some interesting images.

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Creative Collective 023: Easy Double Exposure Photography

In Camera Double Exposure – Fujifilm X100V – “Kodak Tri-X 400

Sometimes I get into a double exposure mood. It might seem difficult to create good double exposure pictures—thankfully, Fujifilm cameras make double exposure photography easy! In this article I’ll explain just how simple it is to do it, and also explain why it’s difficult to do it well.

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Creative Collective 003: Double Exposure Art — A Simple Method

In-camera double exposure using Fujifilm X-E4 & Ferrania Solaris FG 400 recipe.

I love double exposure photography! If done right, you can cleverly create exceptionally artful pictures. But how do you do it on your Fujifilm camera? What are some easy techniques that give good results? In this article I’ll discuss this topic in detail and provide some useful tips to help you make your own artistic double-exposure photographs.

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See also: The Creative Collect Corner

Fujifilm X100V Film Simulation Recipe: Faded Negative

Country Fence in Winter – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X100V – “Faded Negative”

I’ve created a number of film simulation recipes that require double exposures, including Faded Color, Vintage Color Fade, Faded Monochrome, Faded Monochrome for X-Trans II, Split-Toned B&W, and Bleach Bypass. These recipes are a little more difficult to use, and, because they require further explanation, you won’t find any of them on the Fuji X Weekly app. This one, called Faded Negative, won’t make the app, either (perhaps there will be a way to include them on a future update). These double-exposure recipes aren’t for everyone, but some people love them because you can create a great vintage look that you’d never expect to get straight-out-of-camera. I know that this Faded Negative film simulation recipe will be greatly appreciated by some of you.

To use this recipe, you’ll need to first select “Average” under “Multiple Exposure CTRL” in the Shooting Menu. What’s great about this particular double-exposure recipe is that the only change you will need to make in the settings between the first and second exposure is exposure compensation (many of these require more adjustments than just exposure compensation). You want the first exposure, which is the scene you are capturing, to be bright, and the second exposure, which is a green piece of construction paper, to be a little darker. You can control how much “fade” there is by the second exposure—the brighter the exposure, the more fade there will be.

What makes this recipe work is the second exposure of a medium-green piece of construction paper. You want this exposure to be out-of-focus. If it’s in-focus, you’ll get the texture of the paper in the image, which is perhaps something you want, but probably not. You can manually focus a blurry image, or if you just hold the paper closer to the lens than the minimum focus distance, the paper will be blurry even with autofocus.

Me, with an X100V and green paper, photographing with this recipe. Photo by Joy Roesch.
This is what happens when the second exposure is in-focus instead of out-of-focus.

No photograph will last forever. Some films are more prone to fade than others, and some prints are more prone to fade than others. Faded pictures are a reality of photography. While some people would consider faded images to be a negative thing, there are others who appreciate the aesthetic, and want to incorporate it into their art. This Faded Negative film simulation recipe is for those who want to achieve that look straight-out-of-camera. This recipe is compatible with the Fujifilm X100V, X-Pro3, X-T4, X-S10 and the upcoming X-E4.

Classic Negative
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: +3
Shadow: +4
Color: -2
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpening: -2
Clarity: 0
Grain Effect: Weak, Large
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
Color Chrome Effect Blue: Strong
White Balance: Auto, +4 Red & -6 Blue
ISO: Auto, up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: +2/3 to +1 1/3 for the 1st exposure, 0 to +1/3 for the 2nd exposure (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs using this new Faded Negative film simulation recipe on my Fujifilm X100V:

Reeds & Blue Sky – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X100V
Faded Tree – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X100V
Pine Snow – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X100V
Blackberry Leaves in Winter – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X100V
Winter Road – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X100V
Snow Covered Wagon – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X100V
Dark Forest Sunlight – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X100V
Jon Riding Shotgun – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X100V – “Faded Negative”
Polaroid Presto Girl – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X100V
Analog Cameras – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X100V
Fake Plant – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X100V
Tulip on a Table – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X100V
Shelf Greenery – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X100V
Broken Barn – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X100V
Winter Forest Fence – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X100V
Snow on a Wood Fence – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X100V

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Creative Uses of Multiple Exposure Photography


This picture is a combination of 8 toned B&W exposures. All done in-camera on a Fujifilm X100V.

There are many creative ways to use multiple-exposure photography on your Fujifilm camera. You can create pictures that might not at first glance appear to be multiple-exposure, yet using this tool opens up different aesthetics that aren’t otherwise possible to achieve in-camera. The multiple-exposure feature on your Fujifilm camera is often underutilized—there’s so much potential!

I’ve done a number of experiments with multiple-exposure photography, and written many articles on the topic. Below you’ll find links to some of those posts. If you missed them, or maybe you haven’t thought about multiple-exposure photography in awhile or at all, I invite you to give it a try!

Color Pictures From Toned Black-And-White
Faded Color
Vintage Color Fade
Faded Monochrome
Faded Monochrome (X-Trans II)
Split-Toned B&W
Bleach Bypass
The Treachery of Images

Making Color Pictures Using Acros, B&W Toning & Multiple Exposures


This is a combination of 8 B&W Exposures with different color toning applied to each.

The Fujifilm X100V, X-Pro3 and X-T4 cameras have a new tool for toning black-and-white pictures in-camera. I mentioned in my article about this new toning feature that there’s the potential to get creative with it, especially when combined with multiple exposure photography. I thought that it might be possible to create color pictures using the Acros film simulation, B&W toning and multiple exposures. This is certainly an unusual use of those tools! A sturdy tripod is a requirement for this experiment.

On my X100V, there are 1,368 possible colors to tone B&W pictures, but I concentrated on the more bold options. To make this work, the best results are found in the +/- 15-18 range. My camera has four multiple exposure options: Additive, Average, Bright and Dark. Additive and Average won’t work for this project because it muddies the colors. Bright and Dark will work, and they work similarly. For Bright, the camera compares the exposures and chooses only the brightest pixel at each location; for Dark, it chooses the darkest pixel. I found that one option typically works better than the other, depending on the scene. You could get creative and adjust the exposure of each image to control which colors are chosen; however, I didn’t do that for these pictures.

At first I tried using just three exposures: one with Toning set to WC -18 MG 0 (Blue), one set to WC +18 MG -18 (Red), and the other set to WC 0 MG +18 (Green). This worked alright, but there are not any in-between colors. The transitions from one color to the next are harsh. Still, I was able to create color pictures this way.

After a little experimenting, I decided that eight exposures worked better (you can combine up to nine). In addition to the Toning described in the previous paragraph, I added one with WC 0 MG -18 (Magenta), WC -18 MG -18 (Purple), WC -18 MG +18 (Teal), WC +18 MG +18 (Yellow), and WC +18 MG 0 (Orange-Red). This made the color transitions a little less harsh, but it’s still not ideal. The pictures look strange and nothing like “normal” color photographs. I also tried reducing some colors to as low as +/- 15 (instead of 18) in an attempt to control the outcome a little, but it’s hard to know what you’ll get until you’ve made all eight exposures.

The results remind me of some cross processing experiments that I did a number of years ago. You can get weird results, depending on the film and process. The toned B&W multiple exposures on my X100V loosely resemble the “worst” cross-processing results from those analog experiments years ago. This isn’t something that I’d want to do all of the time, but it was fun nonetheless. Most people will never try this, but a few of you will. I can see someone doing an abstract photography project using this technique.


I used three exposures for this picture.


Another three exposure picture.


This is an eight exposure image.


Another eight exposure picture.


I used eight exposures for this picture. 


Another eight exposure picture.


Eight exposures. The wind moved the grass between exposures.


This is another eight exposure image.

I never really thought that I’d be creating color images from black-and-white in-camera. The results aren’t especially great, so it’s not really a practical thing, more gee-whiz. I do believe, with practice and experimentation, it’s possible to get better results. I hope that you found this article interesting, and perhaps even a few of you were inspired to do your own experiments.

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Multiple Exposure Monday, Part 2: The Treachery of Images


Pas Une Abeille – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm – double exposure

In the late 1920’s, Belgian painter Rene Magritte shocked the art world by painting a realistic pipe for smoking, printing underneath it, “Ceci n’est pas une pipe,” which is French for, “This is not a pipe.” You look at it and ask, “If it’s not a pipe, what the heck is it? It sure looks like a pipe to me!”

Factually, his painting, entitled The Treachery of Images, is not a pipe, it’s a painting of a pipe. A picture is never the object that is represented on it, but a facsimile of that object. Rene said of his painting, “The famous pipe. How people reproached me for it! And yet, could you stuff my pipe? No, it’s just a representation, is it not? So if I had written on my picture, ‘This is a pipe,’ I would have been lying!”

This is an important point for photographers. No matter how real an image may look, the fact is that it is a photograph and not the actual scene. It’s a likeness, and a heavily biased one at that. The photographer makes all sorts of decisions before and after opening the shutter that effect the outcome. Whatever it is that you are photographing, you could print underneath it This is not a [insert name of scene being photographed] and you’d be absolutely right. As a photographer, you are making a one-sided representation of a scene. It’s not possible for the viewers of your image to step into the scene and touch things or move stuff around. It’s a picture, and that’s all.


Not A Light – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm – double exposure

This revelation is liberating! Because it’s not possible for you to photographically make whatever the scene is, only a biased portrayal of it, you can make it look however you wish. You are the artist and you get to decide everything. You are not merely capturing, you are interpreting. You are creating something unique. You are communicating through the picture your thoughts and emotions about the scene in front of the lens. There is no need to be accurate, unless that’s what you, the artist, wants. More important than accuracy is having something interesting or important to nonverbally speak to the viewer.

I copied Rene Magritte’s idea, and made double-exposure photographs that say, in French, “Not a [name of object in the picture],” to remind myself and others of his imperative point. This was a very simple in-camera combination. The first exposure was of black paper with white writing and the second exposure was of the object itself. I did give the photographs some post-processing because, straight-out-of-camera, they’re a little flat.

This was an interesting project that I did over the course of a couple of days. What I appreciate about it is the message. The pictures are nothing more than representatives of the objects, so how I compose, what my settings are, and how I edit are my prerogative, and if you don’t like it that’s fine. I’m the artist, not you. I’m simply communicating through my pictures what I think or how I feel about the object in the picture. Those are my thoughts and my feelings, and I’m allowed to have them. I’m free to create pictures that express myself through them, things that I might have a tough time communicating with actual words.

Besides, this was a fun project and I find photography in general to be fun. If it’s not enjoyable, then why do it? I get a lot of satisfaction from creating images. I hope that others like them, as well, but it’s alright if they don’t, because that’s not why I created the pictures. I hope that my intended message is meaningful to you. I hope that you appreciate these photographs as much as I do. It’s alright if you don’t because it’s not a pipe and you are entitled to your opinions. Sometimes there aren’t any right or wrong answers, and sometimes what seems untrue is actually true and vice versa. Simply put, create what you want to create how you want to create it, and don’t worry what others will think or say about it.


Not A Camera – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm – double exposure


Pas Une Fleur – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm – double exposure


Pas Une Feuille – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm – double exposure


Not A Bird – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm – double exposure


Pas Une Montagne – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 60mm – double exposure

See also: Multiple Exposure Monday, Part 1 

Multiple Exposure Monday, Part 1


My Mourning Essentials – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X100F – double exposure

I’ve been doing multiple exposure photography off and on for a long time. It seems as though every year or two I get a short-lived urge to be creative in that way. I’ll make a number of multiple exposure photographs over the course of a few weeks, then I’ll stop until that urge returns in another year or so.

This type of photography can be done in-camera on film, in the darkroom on paper, in-camera digitally, or with Photoshop or some other similar software. At one time or another I’ve done it each way. I think in-camera on film has the best potential for great results, but it can be very tricky, requiring great skill and great luck. Getting good results in Photoshop can be tricky because, most often, it’s easy to spot when one has done that technique. I find that in-camera digitally is a good method, not quite having the potential that film provides but not producing obviously fake results like what one often sees when done with software.

Here are some examples of multiple exposure photographs that I’ve done in the past:


Ghost Garage – Redlands, CA – Pentax K-30 – double exposure


Photography Is A Drug – Stallion Springs, CA – Sigma DP2 Merrill – triple exposure


I Am Nature – Ogden Canyon, UT – Fujifilm X-E1 – double exposure


Preserved Steam Wheel – Ogden, UT – Fujifilm X-E1 – double exposure


Preserving The Library Stairs – SLC, UT – Fujifilm X-E1 – double exposure

The bug to create multiple exposure pictures bit me again recently. Last week I used my X100F and X-Pro2 to capture several double exposures. I looked around for interesting opportunities to combine scenes. One difficult aspect of multiple exposure photography is combining two exposures in a way that brings new meaning, that changes what both scenes are about. It’s definitely abstract in nature, but there has to be a point to it other than just abstract, or else why do it?

Fujifilm makes it pretty easy to do this type of photography in-camera because you capture the first image, then it superimposes that onto the second as you are capturing it. You can see exactly what the results are going to be. Typically, even with highlight and shadow set to +4, the straight-out-of-camera picture looks flat, so some post-processing is required, although I try to keep it to a minimum.

Hopefully I will have some more opportunities to create even more double-exposure pictures coming up in the next few days. I have a number of ideas floating around inside my head. I hope you enjoy the ones that I captured below.


Yearning – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro2 – double exposure


Not An Entrance – Riverdale, UT – Fujifilm X100F – double exposure


Blue Diamond – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X100F – double exposure


Abstract Rectangles – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X100F – double exposure


Trade Tools – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X100F – double exposure


Two Tone Carts – Riverdale, UT – Fujifilm X100F – double exposure


Lens Target – Riverdale, UT – Fujifilm X100F – double exposure


Double Shot – Riverdale, UT – Fujifilm X100F – double exposure