My yellow plastic friend
Since I first saw it, I wanted to have the Diana Multi Pinhole Operator (DMPO). Not only its color of shining bright yellow is what caught my eyes, the functions this camera has are great. The base is the body of a Diana Camera, so it takes regular 120 films (medium format), but you can also attach the 35mm Back or the Instant Back. You have the camera always in B-mode (bulb mode), so as long at the switch is down you are exposing – and that is what you need for pinhole photography. Another useful thing is the tripod mount, as the camera is very light and should stand steady most of the time.
Now I come to the most important thing: the lens. Lens?!? Well, that is it. There is NO lens. You have three different settings though as you can choose between one, two or three pinholes that are exposing the film. And that is not all. You can add color filters that cover the pinholes and give each shot a unique color. It has a bit of the stereo effect you will know out of the cinema when you have to wear these plastic glasses in green and red. Same effect you will gain if you expose your Lomograph with two pinholes. Three pinholes make even more fun and amusing to the eyes.
What you have to keep in mind are the exposure times. The more pinholes you use, the shorter gets the time, but if you use a color filter, you have to extend it again. Exposure times are a separate chapter and they depend on many things. But let me say this: It mostly takes longer than you think to expose. Pinhole is no shoot from the hip while you walk the streets, pinhole is meditation, pausing in your daily rush.
For me the Diana Multi Pinhole Operator is a real great camera and I was really pleased with the results. It is fun to try different things with her like the advance technique (the tipster is already published) or using the one pinhole setting with the color filters. Whatever you do – enjoy it and spread the analogue love.
One funny story I have to tell about the exposure times and unexpected things. I was sitting in front of a garage with my Diana Multi Pinhole Operator to take a picture of a graffiti for World Pinhole Photography Day. Sitting on the ground and counting. 1, 2, 3,…. 15, 16,… when all of a sudden the garage door was opened and a woman looked shocked at me – and I back at her. She immediately caught the situation right, started laughing and excusing and we talked about street art while i finished the exposing.
When she and her son had left and closed the door again, I took shot two: the graffiti without the inside of the garage.