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Subject:Pinhole Photography
Time:09:22 pm
I had a little play with pinhole photography today - I think I've done this before but I couldn't find the equipment so I built it again. The kits sold for digital cameras generally cost seven or eight quid for what is essentially a lens cap with a hole in the middle, so I cut out the middle man and build my own. This one was simply a 50p plastic body cap (you can get a rear lens cap and a body cap for £1 from Hong Kong) with a hole in the middle, and a strip of Meccano used to retain the actual pinhole, made in some aluminium foil. In an ideal world the hole would be micro-drilled and the foil would be replaced by a sheet of matt black plastic, but this was a basic test so I didn't bother.

Results are pretty dire, and basically confirm that this works, that lenses work much better, and that I really need to clean my camera's sensor - because of the way they work, pinholes reveal any crud that's there, even if it wouldn't normally affect the image if a lens was used.

I tried some artistic effects which worked quite well - but to be honest, they'd probably work just as well on images from a normal lens. On the whole I think it's an interesting experiment, and I may try to improve on it, but I'm not going to waste a huge amount of time on it. I've reduced the size of the images since they aren't that exciting.

Pinhole lens cap
pinhole_03

pinhole_04

A couple of typical photos
pinhole_01

pinhole_02

And some special effects

antique

brush

chalk

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whswhs
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Time:2016-11-24 10:48 pm (UTC)
There is a marvelous book by Land and Nilsson, called Animal Eyes, that talks about this kind of optical comparisons as it affects animal physiology and evolution. You might find it worth a look. It was my most useful single source when I was writing GURPS Powers: Enhanced Senses.
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ffutures
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Time:2016-11-24 10:56 pm (UTC)
Thanks - I'll see if I can get a library loan.
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whswhs
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Time:2016-11-25 12:01 am (UTC)
That's how I got it! My alumnus membership in the San Diego State University library has served me well since 1988; I'm sorry to be too far away to use it now.
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Heather McCrillis
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Time:2016-11-25 02:19 am (UTC)
Ooh, I love the one that makes it look like the lens is frosted. :)
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ffutures
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Time:2016-11-25 09:26 am (UTC)
The effects are from a very old Microsoft photo-editing program called PictureIt which I think was part of Microsoft Works. It's discontinued now, but it had some nice effects and worked pretty well within its limitations.
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