I pulled my Leonardo Pinhole Camera out to complete an assignment for The Photo Game and did a quick check to see how to best calculate exposure and saw that World Pinhole Photography Day is coming up the last Sunday of April, the 24th. Will you be ready? Will I?
I have a small Skink pinhole adapter for Leica M as well, so I can always make a pinhole photograph for Pinhole Day with an M9, but that’s digital and doesn’t count for The Photo Game where all photos have to be made on film.
That’s why I pulled out the Leonardo. It shoots 4×5 film with a 2″ distance from the pinhole to the image plane, so it’s effectively a 14mm lens from a 35mm camera equivalent perspective. Ultra wide! Super lots going to be in the photo. And everything will be in focus from near to far so long as it doesn’t move. And the camera remains still.
Why bother? Why wouldn’t anyone just make a photo with their phone and be done with it? To me, this is where the fun lies, in facing the challenge of what can I do to catch light, to save some–record it–for a very unique photograph.
We know that light is able to be caught on film. We know it doesn’t even require a lens. We know if we add the right amount of light to a composition and make a proper exposure, we can create a truly one-of-a-kind image.
So, pinhole day is almost here. If you want to, you could make a pinhole lens out of your body cap. Or you could make one any number of ways. It’s not difficult. If you make one and can make it any size, this site gives you want the distance from pinhole to film/sensor plane equals in focal length. The further away the hole from the film/sensor, the longer the focal length or narrower your field of view.
If you do make a photograph on Sunday April 24th, (here’s a guide to getting proper exposure), post it to the The Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day website. There you can see work from thousands of photographers from around the world also out making pinhole photographs on that day.
All truly unique photographs.