Sometimes you just need to step back, stay still, and enjoy the many things going around you. Connect with the world and see it in fresh eyes with pinhole photography! Take a breather and capture the moment with pinhole cameras that can prove that sometimes simple is the only way to go.
Basically, pinhole photography is done using a light proof box, a tiny hole, and some film. There are pinhole cameras of different shapes and sizes, taking up different film formats but they all need your patience and focus to come up with beautiful images and stories. Some are as simple as they can be while others can be considered as works of art. But ultimately, it rests upon you to capture the moment and memorable photographs.
The concept of pinhole photography has been around since the 1800s (some accounts would say that people already played with the idea as early as the year 1570) when the camera obscura was born. Back then, it was used mainly by artists for rendering and scientists in their observation/experiments. It wasn’t until the year 1826 that the first pinhole photograph was successfully taken by French lithographer Joseph Niepse using only Bitumen of Judea on pewter – a light sensitive natural ingredient, a camera obscura, and a reported 8 hours worth of exposure time. Truly, times have changed but the ethereal charm of pinhole photography lives on.
Easy pinhole photography: A quick walkthrough
- Choose a camera that will suit you and your photographic needs. Make sure that it’s light-proof! We don’t want your prints to get all messed up due to light leaks.
- Use a film that’s perfect for your environment. Pinhole photography needs more time than regular photography so always remember your ISO and Sunny 16 rule.
- Frame your photograph carefully. Some homemade pinhole cameras have little or no frame marking at all so you would just have to experiment or wing it from time to time.
- Be patient. You can’t rush when shooting with a pinhole camera. Close the shutter too early and you may have underexposed your film, close it too late and you may have let too much light in. Take things in moderation.
- Minimize camera shake if you can’t totally avoid it. Every bit of movement is crucial when shooting with pinhole cameras.
- Have fun! Enjoy the scenery, the people, and the action happening all around you. Pinhole photography is supposed to be fun, not a bore.
You can actually make your own DIY pinhole camera! Some of our fellow community members and featured stories can teach you how. Here are a few examples of some DIY pinhole camera projects:
Lomography offers a wide variety of pinhole cameras for users to choose from. Take a look and see which camera suits your and your shooting style. Experiment with different techniques to add another skill to your creative repertoire.