Three Things; Works in Progress – Laura’s DIY LF part 1

Laura's DIY large format camera

The Work in Progress today is the first step of Laura’s DIY large format pinhole camera project. Laura is working on a series of photographs looking at iconic photographic lighting techniques throughout the decades. A previous work in progress blog saw Laura taking some Man Ray inspired self portraits for the 1920s and 1930s era.

1950s pinhole calculator

Laura is now turning to the late 1800s and the curious pre photoshop photograph manipulation. In an attempt to get a more realistic image to work with Laura is turning away from her digital camera and is attempting to make her own primitive large format camera. Sue found a 1951 edition of the Dictionary of Photography, edited by A.L.M Sowerby which had a section on pinhole cameras.

Beading needles for making pinhole

Luckily Sue has a wide selection of needles and these beading needles seem to be the perfect diameter for the pinhole camera project. Laura will be using photographic paper as negatives in her large format camera and has been hunting around for a method that will allow her to take multiple shots before heading back to the darkroom.

Step one making a DIY large format  pinhole camera

We found this great blog post on creating a DIY large format camera by Udi Tirosh and so far progress has been slow. Laura is reusing a packing box for the camera body and has set about painting the inside matte black. Using a pinhole instead of a lens means there is no need for the moveable focussing screen. A pinhole camera is equally focussed (or blurred) at any distance. The screen will still need to flip down for reloading the paper and the camera needs enough length to fit an A4 pack of photo paper in the back. So the design will have to be modified.

Laura is hoping to add a coastal twist to her Victorian photo manipulation so watch this space for progress.