Underwater Pinhole camera

Discussion in 'Alternative Processes' started by 314ter, Nov 28, 2006.

  1. 314ter

    314ter Member

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    Hi everyone,
    I'm new in APUG, and in Pinhole photography.
    I've made a couple of cameras that worked pretty well, and now I wanted to make a new one.
    The thing is that I want this new camera to take underwater photos. Has anyone try that? I don't know how the water will affect the exposure times, and everything.
    I' seen a picture by Justin Quinnell (http://www.pinholephotography.org/)
    called "Duck and foot" made with a drink can camera so I believe it is possible. I'll appreciate any help.
    I'll begin my first attempt soon. I'll tell you later about the results.
    Bye.

    Pedro.
     
  2. dwross

    dwross Subscriber

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    Welcome to APUG, Pedro. You'll love it here. I don't post very often, but I read most everything. There are so many good ideas being thought about by many good minds. It always gives you something to think about during the day. Like underwater pinholes. What a perfectly marvelous idea!
     
  3. Mark_S

    Mark_S Member

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    Pedro

    I have never done underwater pinhole, but I have done both pinhole stuff and underwater stuff. A few thoughts......

    Pinhole exposures are long, moving water makes most things underwater move, this is a bad combination. You will need to hold the camera steady, which means on the bottom, and you will probably want a subject which is on the bottom.

    One photo that I got once underwater which was interesting, and something similar might be possible with a pinhole....

    Set up your pinhole as a wide angle - then put the camera on the bottom, pointing up for the exposure. If the water is calm, the center circle of the image will be looking up at the sky and you will see things on the shore - outside a certain angle the light from outside is reflected completely, and what you see is a reflection of the bottom - so the result is an image with a circle in the middle with sky and some shore features, and around the outside, detail of the ocean bottom. Trick is to find a combination of very still water and very shallow.
     
  4. John_Brewer

    John_Brewer Member

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    Hey Pedro, I was there when he took that shot. The water was the wash tank for prints in the now long gone South Bristol College college darkroom. Justin is a member here.

    John
     
  5. 314ter

    314ter Member

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    That's a great photo!
    When I was invited to Brazil for summer holydays (I'm from Argentina. It's spring time here, now), I remembered it and thought about how great it would be to be able to take pinhole pictures under the sea.
    How did he make the camera waterproof? What was it made of?
     
  6. John_Brewer

    John_Brewer Member

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    The camera was a drinks can (hence the distortion) and Justin filled it up with water with the film in it. I think is was a fifteen minute expose in cold water which explains the colour of his foot! Do e-mail him, his email address is on his home page, he is very approachable and a huge font of pinhole knowledge.

    J
     
  7. 314ter

    314ter Member

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    Thnx! I will e-mail him.
    P
     
  8. Mike Kennedy

    Mike Kennedy Member

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    Welcome to APUG Pedro.

    A few years back our local arts school featured a chap who used a home made under water pinhole camera to take some great shots off the coast of B.C
    His work was done from a kayak and what made it really unique was that he developed his film On Board. You got it.Had a mini processing unit built into the deck of his kayak. Fascinating stuff!
    I will call the gallery today and get his name.

    Mike
     
  9. Russ Young

    Russ Young Member

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    see Eric Renner's book... he used a one gallon jar. Spray painted interior black then scraped the paint off a small area (the size of a pencil eraser) and placed a brass sheet with a pinhole in it over that spot.

    Russ
     
  10. 314ter

    314ter Member

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    That's a great idea! I'll try that. What worries me most is the exposure time. I guess that the opacity of the sea water will make it longer. I'll have to try over and over again. I'm looking for information on the web for charts or something that helps.
     
  11. Russ Young

    Russ Young Member

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    Seawater? Hmmm. Also turbidity might be an issue.

    Eric did his in a mountain brook as I recall- crystal clear water, no suspended solids whatsoever.

    Show us your results! I'm very curious what you experience.

    Russ
     
  12. 314ter

    314ter Member

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    You'll have to wait till March, when I come back from my hollydays, to see my under-the-sea photos. But I'll show you my sink attemps soon! (I'll begin as soon as I finish with my exams and as soon as I finish the camera).
    Thanks you all for the support!! :D

    Pedro

    PS: You can see one of my Pinhole Photos here
     
  13. diannescully

    diannescully Member

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    a late response . . .

    Hi Pedro,
    This is a few years late, but may help the next reader. . . In the book, "Adventures with Pinhole and homemade cameras," they have the very image of Justin's you posted and they give the specifications as: Exposure in ambient room lighting was 15 minutes at f/186 on 4 x 5in iso 100 black and white film. He filled the beer can with water so it sank to the bottom of his bathtub (and filled the duck with sand). hope this helps!