The Artistry of B&W Film

A Chinese ink painting aesthetic



Even though big players like Kodak aren’t in the photographic film business anymore, film photography still has its allure to this date. However long digital photography has been popular, film photography has. Photography fanatics have even made their own film and cameras for that retro enticement. Negative films never died out, but continued to hold a unique nostalgic place in photography.

Hong Kong craft brewery Yau’s Project Yau has partnered with several photography enthusiasts to create “Handmade Rice Paper Black & White Film”. Not only is it Hong Kong’s first B&W negative film, it is not just any conventional panchromatic film, but rather a less colour sensitive achromatic film. During the research phase, the team tested a range of papers – woodfree paper, tissue paper, painting paper et cetera – and finally decided on rice paper as the base. Turns out thin textured rice paper combined with low light sensitive achromatic film creates a Chinese ink painting aesthetic, transforming the reality we see into a dreamy and poetic scene.


From photographic emulsion, slitting, rolling to packing, the “Rice Paper Black & White Film” is entirely handmade. Since it is a one off experimental project, the film is limitedly produced and there are no plans for retail. However, with its unique turnout, we won’t be surprised if it becomes a crowd favorite if it is mass-produced.