As part of our pinhole assignment in class, we were to construct our own cameras. After not being all that impressed with the results from the coffee can (or having to return to the darkroom after each picture), I decided to construct mine from a body cap. Not only can I take quite a few pinhole pictures in a short period of time, but I can use a device I already know well, with whatever speed film I feel like (instead of ~ASA10 photo paper), black and white or color.
I don’t know if that means I took the easy way out or not, but it allows me to work the way I’m already familiar with, and not having a darkroom, I don’t know that I’d have much use for a coffee can pinhole camera or shooting photo paper outside of this class. The body cap, on the other hand, is now a fun weapon to add to my arsenal, and compact enough that it’s always in my camera bag.
I first tried shooting Tri-X with the Pentax ES (middle image), hoping that I would get something with aperture priority, but sadly it didn’t work, so I was relegated to the bulb setting. The second time I used T-Max 100 in the regular Spotmatic. One thing I noticed was that the pinhole I made is too big, and the lens isn’t quite as sharp as I could wish (I am planning on making another), the result being that the difference in grain between Tri-X and T-Max 100 isn’t very great at all. This pinhole lens has an f/-stop somewhere between 176 and 256. What I ended up doing in later rolls (I’ve shot four so far!) is to treat it as f/176 outside (underexposing slightly) and f/256 inside to compensate for reciprocity failure. Anyway, using the Sunny-16 rule (or Sunny-256 I guess), I’m shooting 1/4sec with ASA400 film or 1sec with 100 film in full sunlight. Obviously there are more images, but framing issues came into play a few times, and honestly I just didn’t take as much time as I needed to to ensure that my images were as interesting as possible, plus I was doing a lot of bracketing.
I just got done printing roll 3 (Tri-X in caffenol, not a good idea for future reference), and roll 4 (Fuji Velvia 100) will be picked up from the camera store in 10 minutes, as soon as I finish this post and hop into the car….