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DSLR Pinhole pics :)
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 02, 2019 4:11 pm    Post subject: DSLR Pinhole pics :) Reply with quote

This thread has been quiet for while. I thought I'd post a couple of my favourites taken with my Pentax and a body-cap with a home-made aluminium pinhole glued in. Any of the obvious dust spots will have been removed Wink

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 02, 2019 5:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Like 1 Like 1 Congrats Whoo Turtle Tuzki with lens


PostPosted: Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I really like It, but I still don't get it how did you do it - reminds me some of the first color movies ,probably seventies


PostPosted: Mon Jun 03, 2019 6:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kiddo wrote:
I really like It, but I still don't get it how did you do it - reminds me some of the first color movies ,probably seventies


Basically, you remove the lens from the camera completely, then fit a body cap which has a "pinhole" fitted in the centre. Depending on your camera you may have to go into the menus and set it to "Operate without lens" or whatever phrasing is used.

So, drill a 1/4" hole in the centre of an opaque body cap, then over that hole affix a piece of aluminium foil (from a pie case or similar) which has a literal pinhole in it. This pinhole will act as an extremely basic "lens" with a very small aperture and virtually infinite depth of field. The smaller the hole the better the resolution, but, inevitably, the longer the exposure. The focal length of the pinhole is simply the distance from the pinhole itself to the sensor in the camera, so for a "telephoto" effect the body cap can be fitted to an extension tube. This will increase the exposure as the effective aperture of the pinhole gets smaller the further away it is from the sensor.

A typical exposure would be between 1-10 seconds with ISO 1-400 in good light. TTL metering will work, but keep the viewfinder very well shielded from stray light, both to not affect metering and to prevent light leakage affecting your final exposure. This is where the little black viewfinder cover that may have been supplied with your DSLR will come in useful Wink Live-View can be a handy compositional aid to help deal with the inevitably dim optical viewfinder image, but is by no means essential Wink

For the cost of a body cap and a few minutes of your time you can have a genuine photographic accessory that doesn't rely on your abilities with Photoshop to produce something out of the ordinary Wink Do be aware, the slightest speck of dust on your sensor will be emphasised by this procedure, (a characteristic of the optics involved), so be prepared to spend a few minutes "spotting" at least the lighter areas of your final image Wink

Good luck!


PostPosted: Mon Jun 03, 2019 12:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very nice. The softness gives your photos an impressionistic feel.

I have seen commercially available pinhole lens caps. They had a brass insert in the center, into which was drilled a tiny hole. But your method will certainly work, and is a heck of a lot cheaper! Makes me want to scrounge up an extra body cap, except I don't have any -- not for my NEX, at least.


PostPosted: Mon Jun 03, 2019 2:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kypfer wrote:
kiddo wrote:
I really like It, but I still don't get it how did you do it - reminds me some of the first color movies ,probably seventies


Basically, you remove the lens from the camera completely, then fit a body cap which has a "pinhole" fitted in the centre. Depending on your camera you may have to go into the menus and set it to "Operate without lens" or whatever phrasing is used.

So, drill a 1/4" hole in the centre of an opaque body cap, then over that hole affix a piece of aluminium foil (from a pie case or similar) which has a literal pinhole in it. This pinhole will act as an extremely basic "lens" with a very small aperture and virtually infinite depth of field. The smaller the hole the better the resolution, but, inevitably, the longer the exposure. The focal length of the pinhole is simply the distance from the pinhole itself to the sensor in the camera, so for a "telephoto" effect the body cap can be fitted to an extension tube. This will increase the exposure as the effective aperture of the pinhole gets smaller the further away it is from the sensor.

A typical exposure would be between 1-10 seconds with ISO 1-400 in good light. TTL metering will work, but keep the viewfinder very well shielded from stray light, both to not affect metering and to prevent light leakage affecting your final exposure. This is where the little black viewfinder cover that may have been supplied with your DSLR will come in useful Wink Live-View can be a handy compositional aid to help deal with the inevitably dim optical viewfinder image, but is by no means essential Wink

For the cost of a body cap and a few minutes of your time you can have a genuine photographic accessory that doesn't rely on your abilities with Photoshop to produce something out of the ordinary Wink Do be aware, the slightest speck of dust on your sensor will be emphasised by this procedure, (a characteristic of the optics involved), so be prepared to spend a few minutes "spotting" at least the lighter areas of your final image Wink


Good luck!


One of the advantages of mirrorless cameras is the viewfinder can't cause light leaks like this.
I made my own bodycap pinhole years ago for my k100d, but it was too wide to work well. (At least hand held shots were possible with flash)
Subsequently I bought a premade one but haven't really done much with that. I wish I'd got a M42 version as then I could use it with a helicoid for a zoom pinhole Smile

I really must dig it out & have another play, you've shown the results can be excellent!


PostPosted: Mon Jun 03, 2019 4:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

DConvert wrote:
One of the advantages of mirrorless cameras is the viewfinder can't cause light leaks like this.
I made my own bodycap pinhole years ago for my k100d, but it was too wide to work well. (At least hand held shots were possible with flash)
Subsequently I bought a premade one but haven't really done much with that. I wish I'd got a M42 version as then I could use it with a helicoid for a zoom pinhole Smile

I really must dig it out & have another play, you've shown the results can be excellent!


Less of an advantage of mirrorless cameras is that the flange-sensor distance can be so short that a body-cap pinhole acts as an ultra-wide ... which is fine if that's what you want, but then the pinhole itself really does need to be really small which can be easier said than done if you're not buying commercially Wink

If you've already got an M42 helicoid just buy an M42 body-cap or two ... they're little more than pennies on eBay, especially if you're prepared to wait a couple of weeks for delivery from "overseas", and have another go at making one yourself ... you might have to eat a pie to get the foil, but call it "suffering for art" Wink

I must admit, if I'm "going basic" like this, a fixed-length "optic" suits me fine. I'll wander around 'till I find an appropriate viewpoint then set everything up on a tripod and "do the job properly". Gives me an enormous sense of satisfaction and bystanders think if I'm using a tripod I must know what I'm doing !! Smile


PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2019 1:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

DConvert wrote:
I wish I'd got a M42 version as then I could use it with a helicoid for a zoom pinhole Smile




On it - https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/M39-LMT-l39-Pinhole-body-cap-for-Leica-Canon-Voigtlander-lens-camera-4-1-2-3-5/183540392801?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2060353.m1438.l2649.


Looks like it may have to be an M39 + M42 step up ring for me. Thanks for sharing a great idea DConvert. Like 1 .


PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2019 5:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sciolist wrote:
DConvert wrote:
I wish I'd got a M42 version as then I could use it with a helicoid for a zoom pinhole Smile




On it - https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/M39-LMT-l39-Pinhole-body-cap-for-Leica-Canon-Voigtlander-lens-camera-4-1-2-3-5/183540392801?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2060353.m1438.l2649.


Looks like it may have to be an M39 + M42 step up ring for me. Thanks for sharing a great idea DConvert. Like 1 .


Well there are times when you just have to add a little complication. High tech optics, who needs them Smile