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Thread: LF pinholes?

  1. #11
    Murray@uptowngallery's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Holland, MI
    I find that one has to select subject matter that is compatible with pinhole. Same with zone plates.

    Pinhole has strengths and weaknesses compared to lenses. Too often I got results that looked like conventional photos that were disappointingly blurry. Yet with certain subjects, people respond enthusiastically to the blur. (In general, on pinhole forums (fora?), not necessarily to my images :O(

    I found that relatively large subjects at close distances are very compatible with pinhole's DOF strength. I was always unhappy with small-detailed subjects at infinity. I do not have zone plate figured out. I have several but don't 'get' alot of the ZP images many people respond favorably to.

    I think wide to very wide angle is my favorite look with pinhole. Normal angle of view pinhole (converted cameras at same spacing as lens) for my experience has resulted in too many images that looked like poorly done lens work. :O(

    With wide angle you will probably find that, in accordance with the advice/adage we Pinheads dispense, you just can't get close enough. If you think you are close enough, get closer first.

    Using converted cameras viewfinders on wide angle shots, as a rule of thumb I compose in the viewfinder, then cut my distance to subject in half. I haven't pushed that any further because of eyeglasses & parallax.

  2. #12

    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Victoria BC
    4x5 Format
    Thanks Murray.

    I find that a lot of pinhole stuff is indeed just a crappy shot that's been taken with a pinhole and branded "interesting" as a consequence of the novelty. Just like any kitchy effect - IR being one of the more obvious ones, but also cyanotype, pt/pd, HDR digital, lith printing, etc. Of course a lot of images are explorations of technique and we all take our lion's share of shitty shots

    On the other hand I've seen some really stunning stuff done with pinholes, as you've mentioned incredibly close stuff where you can take advantage of the DOF offerings (there are things you can do with pinhole that no macro camera could ever do), but also anything that relies on an impression and is well composed, illuminated in the right kind of way, and suited to the pinhole look.

    I have some ideas on that latter front, but only time will tell if these ideas will materialize into anything worth displaying.

    BTW I ended up buying a set of pinholes from pinholeedun.com as well as a set of "EMS 0.4mm pinholes" from a guy offernig them on f295.org's forum (actually he's giving them away to anybody who donates $5 to the operation of the forum).
    The universe is a haunted house. -Coil

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