View Full Version : Diana + Viewfinder framing

02-02-2010, 12:14 PM
I've just processed a roll of film that produced a bunch of images of decapitated people. I was standing on a short stool aiming the camera down at my subject that was maybe 6 to 10 feet away and I chopped his head off in all of the images. Shooting at eye level I've never had a problem. This just doesn't compute. I know how to adjust to compensate, however it doesn't intuitively make any sense. Any ideas? Bill Barber

02-09-2010, 10:55 AM
Parallax. You are not using an SLR. In SLR cameras, you essentially see what the lens sees. In most nice cameras, you see essentially what the lens sees. But in the diana, since the viewfinder is above the lens, you're essentially seeing past the lens. I go for this - think of 80% of the bottom of the viewfinder is what your film sees. You have to correct for parallax.

Nicholas Lindan
02-09-2010, 01:22 PM
Parallax will chop the top 1.5 inches off your subject. If you are chopping more than that - and if the entire head is missing it sounds as if you are - then the culprit is most likely a cock-eyed viewfinder. It is also a possibility that the lens was crooked -- the "focusing helical" in a Diana is often pretty loose.

But this is supposed to be part of the Diana's "charm" - you never know what's going to go wrong next. One can imagine a gallery show of wedding pictures with all of the people with their heads missing...

See if any of the plastic bits around the viewfinder look like they got melted when the camera came out of the mold. Try putting a sliver of black tape over the top of the front viewfinder window so the view through the finder is the same as the view through the lens.

This really shouldn't be any mystery, the Diana achieved it's cult status by being one of the worst cameras made. My vote for the worst is the Empire Baby, a camera that makes the Diana look like a Rollei.

03-13-2010, 03:00 AM
Sometimes not aiming spot on works.

Alex, An Oregon Beach, Nov.2008
Diana Camera
Greatly expired Tech Pan
Scanned 7"x7" silver gelatin print

03-14-2010, 08:54 PM
Presumably your subjects were not decapitated before you took the photo?

11-12-2010, 02:40 PM
Hi all,
Sorry to bump up an old thread,but...
I have the same OP's issue...
Today I've shot a roll with the Diana F+ (one of my daughter cameras) and every frame is chopped in the higher part of the frame...
Have a look at this picture...
The people in the picture are 15-20 ft. away and the picture has been framed to see them completely...
Please bear in mind that I'm not new to photography and I'm also used to parallax correction (1 meter away...but that far???) since I shoot with a wide variety of rangefinders and viewfinders cameras...
Since the film was not 120 size (I used a 135 with no masks to get a wider ratio and it has been correctly centered) I've taped a small portion of the viewfinder (top and bottom) to help framing...
I think there's something wrong in the Diana viewfinder...maybe it is off lens axis (viewfinder points higher than the lens) or maybe too much room in front the eyepiece...
Any suggestion?
(...tape only the top?)

11-12-2010, 03:10 PM
Uh...OK sorry,Nicholas has already said this...

Try putting a sliver of black tape over the top of the front viewfinder window so the view through the finder is the same as the view through the lens.