Pinhole photography requires you to think about motion, careful composition, and at the same time be willing to experiment with your luck. You’re often shooting at a lower ISO setting and with an extremely narrow aperture to create the images that you get. Most of it is also quite wide, too. But to get better pinhole photos, what you need to do is think about your scenes and start seeing the world in a totally different way considering that your camera isn’t capturing a more conventional image.
Pinhole photography is one of the earliest forms of the art and involves being truly creative about looking at scenes. It often involves an extremely narrow aperture of f162 or even narrower along with a long exposure time to capture what’s in the frame. Depth of field is determined by using composition techniques and often the cameras don’t have a lens or focusing of any sort.
Many folks tend to DIY their own pinhole cameras using things like beer cans and much more. But if you’re not the type of tinker around with tools then here are three pinhole cameras that are very worthy of note.
With our focus being heavily on analog this month, we thought that we’d round up a collection of stories in order to educate those looking ot know more about the format and for those that are already smitten with it. 35mm, medium format, large format, pinhole, instant film: it’s all covered here. But beyond this, we’ve also got a couple of fun projects and inspiration for the photographer looking to simply try something new.
All images by their respective owners. Originally featured in our initial blog posts with permission.
Pinhole cameras: they’re such an incredible thing of mystery. They can be large, small, unconventional, or totally fair-looking. Something that they all share in common is the fact that they’re bound to shoot a very long exposure and the image will usually look incredible with the right creative knowledge.
We’ve featured lots of cool pinhole work here on the site, but a couple of cameras really stand out at us. Here they are.
While 35mm full frame digital cameras are very much the standard amongst many professionals and enthusiasts, the format was originally created to satisfy the everyday man. Many moons ago (and some even today) professional photographers shot with large and medium format cameras. These cameras were capable of taking photos that the smaller formats weren’t able to.
Some of these cameras are still in use today by folks all across the world. Here are just a few.
All images by Roger Cline. Used with permission.
Large format pinhole cameras create some of the most beautiful and haunting images of our time with little post-production work. When you hear about a pinhole camera, you usually think about a beer can, or an enlarger, or some other cool contraption. Usually, these images are small to medium format and sometimes you’ll spot the occasional large format. But rarely do you find something as large as 16×20 pinhole camera? Roger Cline has created one, and when using in conjunction with his design background, they create beautiful, ethereal, and mind blowing images together.
The camera was hand-built and uses paper negatives at ISO 6 or 8. And trust us, there is a lot of work that goes into a single image.