I am a camera

We’ve seen some odd student projects in our time here at CR, but this must go down as one of the oddest: two Kingston students created human photograms by swallowing 35mm film, then, erm, expelling it, and recording the results

We’ve seen some odd student projects in our time here at CR, but this must go down as one of the oddest: two Kingston students created human photograms by swallowing 35mm film, then, erm, expelling it, and recording the results

Luke Evans (above) and and Josh Lake (below) are in the final first year of the BA Graphic Design & Photography at Kingston University. For their final major project they “wanted to bring our insides out” they say. “So we ate 35mm photographic film slides and let our bodies do the rest.”


Both students ate pieces of 35mm slide film, ‘expelled’ it in the dark, fixed the silver and then scanned the pieces using an electron microscope in order to record the traces their bodies had left on the film’s surface.


Luke Evans’ body with slide film inside

One of the final images created by Josh Lake’s insides

And from Luke Evans

“The full-sized images are 10,000 pixels on the longest edge, allowing you to see every detail of what our bodies produced,” they say, as can be seen from this shot of the work on show.

See more of Luke Evans’ work here

And Josh Lake’s here



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  • http://bipmistry.wordpress.com Bip

    Blood genius!

  • http://www.biggerpixel.com Sandra

    I just think it is just wrong to say it looks really good and that it is a good concept… but it does look really good and it is a great concept !

  • http://www.pauljohnnelson.com Paul

    First year students, not third, so slightly more impressive!

  • PatrickBurgoyne

    @ Paul
    Yes, sorry. Have amended that

  • Angus

    oh that’s some crap art!

  • Jamie Freeman

    It’s one thing to swallow slide film (potentially interesting idea actually) but to swallow a press release and expel it verbatim is quite another.

    ‘I am the camera’ my arse. A camera uses light to expose film. This pair just used a microscope to expose your lack of editorial vigour.

    It’s weak work and you know it.

  • Ross

    Faux art, terrible.

  • PatrickBurgoyne

    @ Jamie Freeman
    I think you mean rigour.

  • http://cmdplusd.wordpress.com cmdplusD

    The prints look incredible!

  • Olie Kay

    @ Patrick Burgoyne

  • Tim

    These are very impressive. superb.

  • Jeykey

    I real likes dis project. Man! It stands out and ah’ have neva’ eva’ seen any fool do it befo’e! Right on! Well done dudes! Right on!

  • Kathy

    Amazing work.

  • Jake

    For anyone saying this look terrible, it’s innovation and experimentation..
    For first year uni students to be coming up with concepts like this, astonishing.

    Don’t pretend like you knew how this would turn out, don’t come back with some arrogant remark about not caring a both idea and don’t shoot down people for trying something new..

    Both idea and execution are excellent and one day you’ll take your head out of your own arse and realise this while your regular photo gets added to the millions of other mind numbing shots on Flickr.

    This is the same idea as ‘The Fountain’ in which the director wanted natural visuals to make up most of the fantasy, it’s mostly real and it doesn’t need Adobe Light Room blitzing the shots.


  • Jak

    I’d just like to point out that one of the guys says “…we ate 35mm photographic film slides…” but it’s clearly negative film.

    However, the process of getting to the final images and the final prints themselves are quite interesting.

  • Ben

    this certainly stands out from the crowd. Great idea and amazing execution. Wow.

  • Micha

    It’s certainly produced some interesting images, so congrats to them.

    On the other hand, it stinks to me of coming up to a deadline at uni with not a jot of an idea so doing the first thing they thought of that required not much effort to achieve and it not mattering that they hadn’t spent the previous 6 weeks beavering away at it.

    Either way, congrats to them.

  • http://www.sloly.com David Sloly

    Amazing. Great idea and beautifully executed.

  • http://www.thejunglegroup.co.uk Rob

    Can you purchase the prints?

  • Captain obvious

    That seems like a very unhealthy thing to eat. There are chemicals on that film which are certainly not meant to be ingested.

  • Kim

    these are brilliant. much better what Ive seen recent galleries. Simple concept, superb outcome. this deserves to be seen. well done guys.

  • Kim

    these are brilliant. much better what Ive seen recent galleries. Simple concept, superb outcome. this deserves to be seen. well done guys.

  • A photography professional

    Impossible. a) There would be either too much light coming in or coming out OR there wouldn’t be enough light if they did the entire thing in the dark room. b) To create images like the ones above you would need a serious macro zoom lens. c) Any sort of photographic image is taken at a fraction of a second. This film was in the system for hours I’m sure. In reality, they would come out as one big blur IF there was any light source. Even IF the light source flashed outside the body pointing at the body, the thick muscle layers would never penetrate well enough to sufficiently expose the film to create such minute details. d) The thin sharp edges of the film would not only have cut the entire stomach/intestine coming out but the film itself, as someone above said already would release chemicals not suitable for consumption. These images are not only completely fake, they are also, in a way, saying that it’s cool to swallow intensely dangerous materials.

  • PatrickBurgoyne

    @ A photography professional

    They are not created by light. The images are from an electron microscope picking up the deposits left on the film’s surface by the students’ bodies.

  • http://popfry.co.uk Luke Evans

    @ A photography professional

    As Patrick said, these are not light based, but are images of the damages, bumps, scratches, deposits made by our bodies on an otherwise smooth film.

    This was not a *photographic* process, it was an experimentation to see how such a widely used and historic medium could be used alternatively. There was no way of telling at the beginning if it would work without trying it.

    It took a long time, and a lot of problem solving for us to achieve these images and not kill ourselves in the process.

  • http://popfry.co.uk Luke Evans

    @A photography professional

    The chemicals inside film are nowhere near the intensity needed to harm us on a small scale, as told to us by medical professionals.

  • Fred Sewell

    brilliant work. can’t believe they are only in their first year. Wish I did this. nice work also Josh Lake, really like you Eye Maps project. talented people. well done.

  • Zeek Patoonski

    @ A photography professional
    “Any sort of photographic image is taken at a fraction of a second.”
    as a photography professional you must be aware of long exposures, and even astronomy photography that can keep the shutter open for hours… Even though that is a moot point in this case as the project was about collecting deposits and not making and exposure.

  • A photography professional

    @ Luke and @Patrick, once you clarified that your project really has nothing to do with photography, I really have nothing else to add other than “Cool.”

  • jacob

    astonishing. Well done chaps, this is very, very impressive. Jacob

  • Mike

    It actually says in the text what they did… but maaaaan people don’t even bother to read !!!

    “….and then scanned the pieces using an electron microscope in order to record the traces their bodies had left on the film’s surface.”

    Those aren’t actually images from inside, that would be stupid!!! They’re just SEM images of the film’s surface, damaged in small amount by enzymes and with other decomposition leftovers from food and liquids etc…

  • Chris

    @ A photography professional.

    You seem to be communicating in a tone that tells me you are, erm, jealous. As a ‘photography professional’ I’d be interested in what you consider to be worthy photography. Any links to your work? Regards, Chris.

  • Tor Appelbergst

    Dinner anyone? We are having “film” for entree with a honey mustard dressing :-). Amazing pics I must say I am very tempted to have a slice of “film” for dessert :-).

  • http://www.polaroidland.net Christopher

    If there is no exposure, and the swallowed material is just meant to scoop up deposits, why bother using photographic film? Any piece of smooth plastic would do. Using film adds complexity (expelling in the dark, for example) without any artistic or other benefit.

    If you’re going to swallow a piece of film, hit it with some gamma rays or something, and take a picture! Make it worth the trouble, you know?

  • Mo

    Best work around.

  • D

    I am a physician. Not saying this is fake but the chest x-ray does not support their story for a couple reasons. The location of the “film” is nowhere near any part of the gastrointestinal tract. The esophagus goes down the center of the chest and the piece of film shown here is off to the left of where the esophagus is. The piece of film is not in the stomach either because I can see the stomach below the level of the diaphragm. It wouldn’t be above the diaphragm unless there was a hernia but I don’t see any evidence of that either. Secondly, film would not “light” up like that on a chest x-ray. Objects that are dense such as bone or metal would show up white. Objects that are translucent or penetrable by x-rays such as air, fat, and film would show up darker on an x-ray.

  • Chris – Photography student

    OK, so we’re all agreed that you need light to expose film. If this film was consumed and then shat out in the dark then the film isn’t exposed and they’ve developed blank film covered in shit.

    It’s not photography, but I guess somebody somewhere thinks it’s worthy of art. Regardless, there’s not many students I know with such impressive blogs or this much hype around their work. Fair play lads – and when you want to take some photographs come give me a call ;o)

  • Michael – Also a Photography Student

    The only photograph here, is the closeup of unexposed film after its passage through the human body, taken with an Electron Microscope. This article is poorly worded and misleading in its description of events and intentions.

    They swallowed film, passed it, chemically fixed it (so the residue would not be disturbed) and then imaged it with a microscope.

    Film requires light to create an image and a lens to focus the image properly on the film… thats how, if you understand photography, you know that these pictures are not images of the INSIDE OF THE BODY but closeups of film that has been inside the body.

  • V

    Fake or not, the prints look amazing. Great work.

  • http://joshua-lake.com/ Joshua Lake

    Hi, just to clear a few things up, the x-ray picture was part of our research and intended for illustration purposes only. It was not intended for press release, a mix up. The film was contained within a capsule we designed, the capsule had holes in to allow the acids, enzymes etc to penetrate the film as much as possible. We did seek medical advice and there was a risk of obstruction, penetration and it getting lodged. Hope this has answered a few questions. Thanks, Josh

  • pehash

    Amazing.. Microscopic details of plastic (it’s not film.. there was no photographic process involved) covered in… excrements. Why didn’t they take some microscopic pictures of their fingers.. right after digging for the negatives? :)

  • BC

    enzymes? so did you leave the poo on the film? or did you not wash it off? you could have just grabbed some corn out of your feces and taken a SEM image of that. or taken a picture of the film after you handled it, fingers would leave all kinds of crazy looking things when viewed with a SEM.

  • B

    Great concept and nice images, find the title of the project/article a little confusing though as I think other seem to.

    Other than the that I love it!

  • Alecso

    A fake as big as a castle. Chloridric acid will dissolve the emulsion and not only that, plastic will hurt you while it gets its way out. And not only these things, you cannot take pics in a dark chamber, and also it moves constantly. Moreover, you cannot get pics so sharpen without lenses and a exposure time.

  • PatrickBurgoyne

    @ Alecso
    I suggest you read the story and the comments before giving us the benefit of your wisdom

  • bravoquestion

    did they crap them out or throw them up?

  • http://www.findsolarpanelinstallers.co.uk/ Ed

    Irrespective of whether you think this is photography or not, the crux is the innovative and unique idea. Major artists thrive and exist on their ability to create concepts from unique ideas and for first year student, well it just shows that they have talent!

  • shel

    This is everywhere! its so original and so so clever. Idea is amazing and images are insane!

  • bla bla

    slide film will come out negative if developed in a negative solution and using film instead of a piece of plastic makes complete sense as the acids in the body could have developed some, all or none of the film, only by actually doing it is the only way of finding out.
    excellent idea.

  • Steve

    If I’m not mistaken are Luke and Josh’s images both exactly the same but just rotated 90 degrees!!!

  • http://rachelvictoriaphotography.weebly.com Rachel

    Incredible work guys and you really split opinions with it, excellent! Ive just finished 3 years studying photography and would have loved this kind of attention around my work!
    I wish people would read the description and the comments before posting, get your facts right people!
    It doesn’t matter how you got there, the thought process and final out come speaks for itself really.

  • http://www.cameramill.co.uk Milly

    As Steve above has said, the images of Luke and Josh’s are both exactly the same but just rotated 90 degrees. Maybe they both share the same body like Siamese twins?

  • ian s

    Hit it with Gamma Rays? Learn about photography OR watch the Avengers.


  • B

    Reminds me to the Hungarian artists Ádám József A. “Elõzõ-nézet” ( The View Before / Front View) 1998,
    where he formed a whole with this mouth creating ‘photooralic’ ( how he called it) images / photograms.
    You can translate this here: http://www.c3.hu/events/97/flusser/kiallitas.html