Tuesday, June 1, 2010

My New Camera

A couple of weeks ago while at the Impossible Project Store's grand opening, I had the pleasure of meeting one of my Flickr contacts.  Long story short, he ended up offering to make me a pinhole camera with a Polaroid back - - how exciting!  About a week later, I received an email showing me the work in progress....





AND THEN.... it was finished.  Before I knew it, I was holding this camera in my shaking hands!!  (See below, left....sorry for the small pic; I will later take one with my digital)  It's hard to see that the Asian coin in the photo above which surrounds the pinhole is now covered with a fancy brass latch and hook with snug material inside to prevent any light from reaching the hole.   Also notice the polaroid 'back' which Arunas has amazingly developed using a vintage Polaroid camera; the kind with the bellows.


In order to take a photo, just aim at your object, and open the latch for the number of seconds, minutes, or hours required, given the available light.  I've been estimating outdoors in bright sunlight, and for indoor projects (which I've yet to do because the film I'm using now is better suited to bright sun) I'll utilize my (borrowed from my twin sister) manual light meter to measure the light and calculate/estimate the necessary exposure time.

So here are the first results:
(I have to learn now to 'aim'.  It's a bit of trial and error, but I just love that it is imperfect.)












This is my kind of camera; one which uses the basis of photography - allowing light inside to expose a piece of sensitive film for the proper amount of time to make a picture.  Take away all those expensive lenses and focusing devices.  Get away from the digital thing.  It's a hole made with a pinprick.  Simple and good.


I highly encourage anyone interested in having one made for themselves to contact Arunas.  He is a wonderful person who loves to share his passion for photography with others.  Quite less than $100 can get you a one-of-a-kind pinhole beauty which makes a great gift to you or someone you know.  I get nothing from this; just want everyone to share in the joy!  Take a look at some of the cameras he's made so far, and then shoot him an email at akulis2 [at] gmail [dot] com to have your own made...... Oh, and tell him Susan Mac sent you!

29 comments:

annie stephens said...

the results are gorgeous, what an incredible and unique gift! you must be so overjoyed. your friend has an amazing talent!

sMacThoughts said...

OH I so agree, Annie, and though it was not free, this camera is worth 10 times what I paid... it is a work of art. And I am really getting into the pinhole thing... I've had one before, but having instant results is SO much better because I am learning exposure right away. (I'd take a whole roll of film with my pinhole, 36 exposure film, and see maybe 2 good photos. Most were far too underexposed. This is because of something called the Schwarzchild effect.... or something. ;)

Meekiyu said...

wow that's amazing... I've heard of pinhole cameras but never seen that they had such amazing results and how one is made. The photos look awesome definitely something digital cameras can't do... =D

Anonymous said...

lovely results!!!
Camera is in right hands, what can be better - Arunas

sMacThoughts said...

Meekiyu .... definitely not. The pinhole is one of the most basic of cameras. It's a good way of paring down to simplicity and just make pictures the old fashioned way!

Arunas .... you are the best!

futurowoman said...

GORGEOUS! Congratulations on your beautiful new camera--what a special treat!! :) I love what you're doing with it already, too!

sMacThoughts said...

Thanks, Nancy... Ohhhhh, this camera in your hands, though. You'd do magic!!!

Diana said...

Those is pretty freaking cool! I've always wanted to try making my own (using an oatmeal tin), but I'm a little bit on the lazy side sometimes!

I couldn't think of someone better to receive such a sweet sweet camera!

sMacThoughts said...

Oh go for it, Diana, you will fall in love with taking it with you to odd places so that you can make photographs with it!!

Lori said...

These are amazing and the pinhole camera is beautiful. I'm heading to his link now.

sMacThoughts said...

Yay, Lori, get one, I want everyone to have one so we can share our dream-like photos!

Victoria Bennett Beyer said...

I love the results! I hope you have lots of fun with your new camera!

Richard said...

I like these results, hope to see more soon. This kind of shooting in appealing more and more to me because of this dream-like quality. Under $100 you say...ummmmmm.......(rsoud at flickr)

sMacThoughts said...

Victoria .... Thanks so much!

Richard .... Do it, Do it!! (then we can share our results on Flickr!) Just send Arunas a flickr mail and see what he says; you can always say 'another time' if you want!

Dean Grey said...

sMacThoughts!

Wow, your new, custom-made camera looks amazing! I love the decorative case itself.

But what type of camera is inside the wooden box? If it's not digital what is it then?

Sorry, never quite heard of this method until your post!

-Dean

sMacThoughts said...

Dean, the simplest form of camera is the pinhole. You can literally make one out of a cardboard box and a pin. I"m not kidding. It's a great little project for kids and adults who are serious about the old ways of photography.

A photo is made when light hits a sensitive sheet called film. To illlustrate what is happening, if you were to have a 4-walled room with one window, and over that window you pulled down a shade which let in no light at all, and if you poked a tiny hole with a nail, say, in the shade, you'd see an upside-down image of the scenery outside the window, in wonderful detail, reflected through the shade hole across the room on the wall.

This is basically what my cigar box has become. There is a pinhole in the front which I uncover to allow light through. In comes the light... into the box, straight to the back where the sensitive polaroid film is. It gets developed, I pull it out, and peel it apart (this is the old peel-apart kind of Polaroid film, well, Fuji makes a new brand, now) and voila! Picture! Just like the ones I've shown here.

It's science, it works, and it's really, really cool. :)

Galit said...

I'm not sure what I enjoyed most - your post or your answer to Dean which is super!
And I have to admit I'm jealous..!
And the photos are gorgeous!
You're amazing! Thanks for Arunas' contact. I think I will soon use it... :)

sMacThoughts said...

You won't be sorry, Galit! (and thanks!!)

angela simione said...

oh man. this is hands down the raddest thing i've seen in awhile! so so so cool and funky. that equals BEAUTIFUL! i'll definitely cruise his way when i get some extra dough. i'm full of covetous envy. what a wonderful thing!!!!

sMacThoughts said...

That's smart thinkin', Angela!

jdavissquared said...

this is seriously amazing! Not only are the photos beautiful, but the camera itself is fabulous! I want one!

sMacThoughts said...

Waste no time; you won't be sorry!

Lenae May said...

Too fun!! I LOVE your new camera!! What a clever idea!
Lenae

sMacThoughts said...

Arunas is so very talented. The idea of a pinhole camera, and even one made out of a cigar box is not so new.... but this... is very unique, artistic, new, and talented!!

Russ Morris said...

How fun! I like the cigar box motif. Making a pinholaroid can be as simple a hacking off the front part of a Colorpack II and using gaffer to attach a square piece of aluminum can with a tiny hole in it over the remaining snout of the camera... Michael Pastur's handmade pinholes inspired me to give it a try, too.

I saw your note to flickr about the recent changes. I'm still on the fence but I'm thinking I might put more energy towards my mostly ignore photoblog in the near future. Flickr's been really good to and for me over the past 5+ years. Maybe it's time for a change...

sMacThoughts said...

Russ, thanks for your comment.... and now I have to look up this Pastur guy!!

Russ Morris said...

let me save you a little time...

http://www.flickr.com/photos/michael-pastur/sets/72157600306662355/

Dean Grey said...

Thanks for the explanation, sMacThoughts, but it still kind of went over my head!

Wouldn't just a pinhole of light make for a poor image? Doesn't more light equal more detail? That's what I'm not getting.

And why would the pinhole in the shade (the example you gave) make an upside down image?

I think I'll have to stick with my digital camera for now.

*sigh*

One of these days you'll have to show me how yours works!

-Dean

sMacThoughts said...

Dean, it is sorta difficult to understand, but you can demonstrate quickly for yourself... if you roll up a tube of paper and look through it, do one roll very big, do the other very tiny -- you'll find the very tiny one shows things in much finer focus. And that's without a lens.

Yes, I will have to construct a better demonstration of how this all works. (believe me, I am learning myself!)