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Discover A New Passion With Self-Made Pinhole Cameras

May 4, 2008
Looking for a new hobby? If you're into art, then pinhole photography could just be the thing you need. It offers a unique way of capturing life without breaking your bank account. Pinhole cameras will introduce you to a whole new world of art.

Getting a Camera for Your New Passion

To start with, you'll need to get yourself a pinhole camera. Pinhole cameras can be very inexpensive. There are commercially available pinhole cameras available on the Internet or in photography shops. But you can also make one yourself. Now you don't have to worry about this part.

Getting Started

Making a pinhole camera is simple. All you'll need are a light-tight box or a can with a tight-fitting top, film and photo paper, black photographic tape or black electric tape, black paint, and, of course, a pin or a needle.

Once you have all the materials, the first thing you must do is to paint the container inside-out with flat black paint. This is to ensure that light does not enter the camera. The next step is to make the pinhole.

The Pinhole

If you're making non-cartridge pinhole cameras, make the pinhole on the opposite end of the removable side. This will make things easier for you when attaching the film. You can make the pinhole directly on the container, or you can make it on a separate piece of thin metal of heavy black paper and fasten it over a bigger hole made in the center of the container.

Just to be on the safe side. There are charts available that equate the pinhole size to the pin size and the distance from the pinhole to the film. When making the hole, make sure to rotate the needle as you push through the container - this will give you a smoother hole. Don't press the pin too hard - make it such that 1/8" of the needle goes through the surface. Smooth the rough edges with an emery paper. After all these, you tape the pinhole over the hole in the box. Use the photographic tape or electric tape to do this.

To check that the pinhole is perfectly round, look through the back of the cam. If you see images clearly when aiming the camera toward a scene, then you'll know that you're doing the right thing.

The Shutter and the Viewfinder

For the shutter, you can use an opaque dark paper. Attach it to the pinhole by hinging it with adhesive tape. You can also use tape to keep the shutter fastened while the camera is not in use.

A viewfinder is optional for pinhole cameras. But if you wan your pinhole camera to have one, you can use wire or cardboard. The larger frame should be located above the pinhole and should be a bit smaller than the film size.

Paper or Film?

You can use either fast photographic paper or film. But paper is more advisable, since it can be loaded into the camera under a safelight. If safelight is unavailable, you can improvise by covering flashlight with several layers of red cellophane paper. Use it in a dark room, six to eight feet away from your pinhole camera. The only downside to using paper instead of film is that exposure takes about two minutes while film requires only a few seconds.

After making you pinhole camera, you can now indulge in your new passion and start creating your masterpieces. You'll be amazed at the elegance of the photos produced by pinhole cameras.
About the Author
Discover the art of lenseless photography with pinhole cameras. For more high-tech information, you can look into digital video surveillance systems like the Linksys Wireless-G Internet video camera. Visit Video-Surveillance-Guide.com today.
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