Thursday, June 28, 2012

How to make a digital pinhole camera

I've already created a post on making your own analog pinhole camera.  (Which you can find here!)  But now I want to post on how to take your DSLR and turn it into a pinhole camera...which is a lot easier and faster than the whole tin can pinhole! 

This project takes probably 15 minutes, with the right tools, from start to finish.

You will need:

Along with a power drill and 3/8 drill bit, which I forgot to photograph.

Let's get started!  Begin with a DSLR body cap that screws onto your digital camera.  You can buy generic body caps online for cheap or use the original cap that came with the camera.  I used my original cap since I never use it and if I ever do, I'll just cover the pinhole to prevent any dust from entering the body.

 I placed a 3/8" drill bit on my dads power drill and drilled a hole in the center of the lens cap.

Then I sanded the surface smooth and got rid of any rough edges.

After that, I cut a soda can in half and cut out a 1"x1" square piece of aluminum.

And then I took a #10 sewing needle and pricked a small hole in the center of the piece.  Don't poke the needle all the way through, just enough to create a very small hole.

I took a black Sharpie marker and colored the entire piece black, both inside and outside.

Finally, I took black electrical tape and positioned the pinhole onto the outside of the body cap.  I made sure to cover all the edges of the aluminum so that I didn't allow any light leaks.


I was so excited after putting together the pinhole that I went outside right away and took some photographs with it.  My ISO was set to 1600 and this allowed me to take relatively shorter exposures.  (It also helped that it was sunny and around high noon.)  My exposures ranged from half a second to one second.  I enjoy the soft qualities of the imagery and the unexpected distortions created by the pinhole.

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