What is pinhole photography

In a few words, pinhole photography is a way of taking shots with a homemade device instead of with a $ 1000 camera. The basic principle is that of using a light-tight box with a light sensitive material (film or photographic paper) fitted to the inside and a very small hole at one end of the box to "let the image in"

Why do people do such strange things

Some just for fun, some as an expression of art, some others as a way of protest against our consumption mentality and still others just because they don't have the money to buy a real camera, enlarger and other equipment

Renner's Opinion

In his book "Pinhole photography - Rediscovering a Historic Technique" Eric Renner wrote the following


"Pinhole photography can be the art of surprise, like looking at the world through a child's eyes. It is a continual wonder, and surely magical, that time after time pinhole cameras can make an intriguing image. This curious attribute is the pinhole camera's greatest gift to its user. I truly appreciate that something as easy to make as a pinhole camera performs such a seemingly complex task as producing an image. Here, within mere minutes is a camera and in a few more minutes an image! Some people have tried to make pinhole photography complicated, but it is not, and it should not be. Knowing f/stops and exact pinhole diameters, making view finders and using light meters are not necessary considerations. A pinhole camera's inherent simplicity is the basis of its character. The excitement of making and using something so simple appeals to a childlike innocence within all of us."

Eric Renner

My Family's Opinion:

They declared me for crazy and after trying to construct my first Dirkon and sometimes I really felt so! But in the meantime I even made a second one and now I feel better!!!

George Orwell's Opinion:

All photographers are equal but pinhole photographers are more equal than other photographers :-)

How to build a pinhole camera

Even Kodak has a page describing how to make one, and for an interested beginner it's not so bad ! My own first one was just a shoe box.

Pinhole photography on the net

Using a search engine like Google or Altavista, you will find quite some stuff under the keyword "pinhole photography". Some of the better sites (with the exception of mine) are:

My own work (new, under construction)
My old gallery (to be cleaned up)
In Memoriam Dieter Bubitz, member of the first WPPD team, who died in 2004 far to early. But his friends keep his URL alive! The best pinhole URL in German
The Pinhole Resource ("The Bible")
Oatmeal Box Pinhole Photography (A good site for beginners)
"You design it" with a lot of good links
Pinhole & Beyond! Principle and technics
Jon Grepstad's Page (very good !)
Pinhole by Justin Quinnell including interesting tips how to use any strange materials to make one
Stone Knives And Bear Skins - The Philosophy of George L.Smyth
What they do and think Down Under
Een gatjescamera maken en gebruiken (in dutch), for schools or youth groups)
How to build and use a pinhole camera (same in English, for schools or youth groups)
David Balihar and the Dirkon Paper Camera

On April 248th, 2013, the yearly Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day will happen.

Have a look