Look Ma No Lens!

It’s that time of year again, blog time! I am required to make weekly posts for class. As the decided lack of posts when not required suggest, I am still waiting on blogging to start agreeing with me. So far, on this degree journey my general dislike of all things writing has not improved and I am not holding out high hopes for a future transition. (I really like to read though, so all you writers out there keep it up!! I appreciate what you do.)

This semester the course that this blog is required for is called Alternative Processes. As the name suggests we are exploring processes outside of the purely digital realm, but the course is actually a nice combination of old methodology and processes mixed with the digital and chemical advances of our modern day. For the most part, I will be posting work as I create and work throughout the semester, but I do have a few things from the Spring semester that have not met the blog yet so perhaps a little of that too. I also may use some familiar images to try out some of the alternative process methods on.

Our first project is shooting with pinhole cameras. You can make a pinhole camera out of any container that is light tight and the simplicity while magical becomes somewhat daunting for those of us used to the ease of digital photograph. I do not mind the delay of gratification and perhaps I am even starting to enjoy watching my film paper transform in the developer, but every time I destroy or fail to capture a moment that seemed to be a singular moment of atmospheric splendor, I feel like I have caused a fairy to loose her/his wings.

There are a ton of sites out there that will help you with the technical aspects of pinhole photography if you are interested, so I will not bore you with details. Instead, I will tell you what my containers are and show you a few of the images that I have so far as I am still in the editing stage.

  1. Shell Shaped Box with B&W film paper.
  2. Paint Can with B&W film paper.
  3. Cylindrical Container that originally housed four soup bowls, with B&W film paper.
  4. Digital DSLR with a pinhole fabricated into the body cap (thanks to my favorite fellow for drilling the needed hole). Color, digital images.

I started with a lot containers, but I quickly realized through trial and error how time consuming it can be to ‘dial’ in the exposure times for so I decided to stick with the ones I had some initial exposure success with, and I added the digital option so I could have some quick results, quicker turn around time (no darkroom needed), and the bonus of color.

So far, I have really tried to focus on line, shadow, and tonal variations in my compositions, and pinhole photography, in general, really makes you consider the amount of light present. I am not used to black and white photography so these are a few things that I try to think about to pre-visualize my image in black and white. Here are a few images to start the semester off with many more to come! It still seems that when I think I have a great composition I do not get the exposure quite right and when I get the exposure it ends up being an image that is compositionally a little blah…I have less than week to tie it altogether so wish me luck!

NoFace_lowRes DSLR Pinholeskaterlegs_lowres quads, skater legs,”I like big ‘quads’ and I cannot lie”

ToePoint_LowRes Leggy_LowRes Slow Motion


Pinhole005 Pinhole010_LowResSalsa Monster

Pinhole002_lowres Concussion

ToePoint_LowRes Pinhole006_lowres Love this except for the exposure!!



3 thoughts on “Look Ma No Lens!

  1. I know writing is not your favorite thing but I am enjoying your conversational manner and the images are making excellent progress. Try working the curves on the wonky exposure piece.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. this is awesome and inspiring to see! I love the multiple exposure and how clean and crisp some of the photos are knowing the method used in making them. I am still struggled to get a grasp on pinhole but I am looking forward to seeing more of your work, keep it up!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. You may not enjoy writing, but I enjoy reading what you write! So, as you said – please keep writing for us readers!
    I have always enjoyed photography as well, but the pinhole camera frustrated me. Give me an old manual 35 at least! Lol I think you are capturing some very nice shots though.

    Liked by 1 person

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