Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day

Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day was celebrated on Sunday 29th April 2018, and photographers across the globe took the opportunity to get out and about with their pinhole cameras. Lens-less photography comes in all varieties from analogue homemade tins or boxes, bespoke wooden pinhole cameras, to digital conversions. My favourite choice of camera for the day was my old Polaroid Pinhole 100 camera. The real joy of experimenting with this camera is that it uses an analogue Type 100 instant peel-apart film, so for creative exposures the print can be viewed following just 60 seconds development. Negative and print sheets are sandwiched together in the film pack, exposed in camera before being pulled out through rollers, which spreads a pod of chemical gel between the two sheets, developing the image. The sandwich is then pulled apart to reveal a processed print and negative sheet.

Sadly Polaroid instant Type 100 film has not been in production for some years now, and Fuji have just recently discontinued manufacture of their last film in this format. Once my refrigerated expired stock of these films is finally used up, this little camera will become redundant, without some engineered structural modification to use an alternative film format. One slight positive will be that I will then be able fit some food back in my fridge, but that is only if I do not manage to locate a further source of film stock to fill it with!

For the past few years here in the UK it seems to have been grey and wet weather for Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day, and this year was no different, but shooting beneath a tree canopy helped to shelter camera and instant prints from the worst of the rainfall. Despite the overcast skies, I was still achieving 6-8 minute exposures on the Fuji made film. Multiple exposures under the trees created an ethereal image with subtle layers and an impression of movement from the passage of a breeze through the leaves.

Direct scans from the Fuji fp-100c type 100 instant print images shot on 29th April for Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day. One image will soon be uploaded to the WPPD gallery: http://pinholeday.org/

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Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day

I’ve been exposing Polaroids with my pinhole camera yesterday celebrating Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day. It was a little bit (too) breezy up on the cliffs at Capel le Ferne though and not ideal conditions for either long exposures, or peel apart instant film blowing about in the wind. Conditions did, however, contribute to suggestion of a sense of motion evident in some of the prints from my walk.
This is a scan of the first pinhole shot that morning. Polaroid 100 pinhole camera with a 1 minute exposure on expired Polaroid sepia type 100 instant film. Unfortunately after the first few shots, the developer had dried and the film pack jammed. The later Fuji prints still feel a bit too soft to scan at the moment.
Polaroid 100, Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day #Polaroid #Pinholeday

1st roll of film for the Indisposable Concept

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I was excited to trial a disposable camera for the Indisposable Concept (1 roll of film, 1 week, 24 moments), but on this first film most of the shots were too underexposed to use – even for an 800asa film, which was in all probability caused by a faulty shutter. I still wanted to expose a roll of film for the project, so purchased a different type of disposable camera and decided to dive it a second try. I was about to embark on a few days excursion to the New forest, so packed the little Fuji single use camera to see if this one would perform better at recording scenes from the week. I found it to be an enjoyably simple little camera to use. The viewfinder is bright, although without parallax lines, so with closer subjects would require a little bit guesswork. There is nothing to set, however, just wind on; decide whether flash is required (which I did not actually need throughout); and shoot.

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Once all the exposures were used, I sent the camera and the film it contained to be developed, then awaited the results with some trepidation. When I got the processed film back, I was really surprised how well exposed, bright and colourful the contact sheet was. On inspection of the scans, the little Fuji had really performed rather well, considering it’s tiny lens and simple construction. I’m delighted to at last have 1 roll of film, 1 week, 24 moments (27 actually) to share with the project from this little impromptu road trip.

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