loading

We are going to make a pinhole camera from a small matchbox.

Yes, you will actually take pictures with it, so be sure to make it as best as possible!!!

Step 1: You Will Need...

§ A matchbox

§ A new roll of B&W 400 ISO 35mm film

§ An empty roll of 35mm film with at least 1cm stub of film sticking out.

§ Thin cardboard (The box the new film comes in is fine)

§ An empty drink can

§ Black PVC electricians tape

§ A plastic bottle

§ A fine needle

§ Scissors

§ An Exacto knife

§ A black sharpie

§ Decorating tape

Step 2: ​The Box

- Remove the inner part of the matchbox; the matchbox tray.

- Mark out a 1" square exactly in the centre of the match tray.

HINT: You can find the middle of the box by drawing an X from corner to corner.

- Carefully cut out the square shape with a sharp knife. This will be the frame of your image.

HINT: You can keep the edges clean or make it messy, it's up to you!

- Color the inside tray completely black with a Sharpie.

Step 3: Cutting the Hole

- Mark out a 1/4" square on the font of the matchbox sleeve.

- Cut this square out neatly with an Exacto knife to avoid fluffy fibers from obscuring the image.

Step 4: Making the Pinhole

- Cut out a 1" square from the aluminum drinks can.

- Color the 1" square black with a Sharpie.

- Ask Ms Britz to make your pinhole in your aluminum can.

HINT: Ideal pinhole diameter is 0.2mm. Smaller is OK, larger and the images produced will be less sharp.

Step 5: Tape Pinhole to Matchbox

- Place the aluminum onto the box so that the pinhole is exactly in the centre of the square hole.

- Tape the aluminum onto the box, securing all four sides.

HINT: Do not cover the pinhole!!

Step 6: Making a Shutter

- Cut two pieces of thin card.

1. 1"x1" square. Cut a 1/4" square in the middle of the square. This holds your shutter.

2. 2"x1" rectangle. Cut one end rounder. This is your shutter.

- Put the square over the pinhole and tape the sides and the bottom. Leave the top open.

- Slide the rectangle, rounded side down, in the opening of the square.

HINT: Make sure the shutter goes over the pinhole.

Step 7: Make and Add a Clicker to Your Roll of Film

- Grab a new canister of film (higher iso's work better with pinholes)

- We need to know how far to wind the film after each picture. For this we make a clicker from a plastic bottle.

- Cut a piece of plastic from a plastic bottle.

HINT: Cut it on the curvy round side.

- Tape the plastic to the new film canister securely.

- Test clicker by gently pulling out some film. It should slide over the film holes smoothly and make a click.

Step 8: Loading the Camera

- Trim the leader off the film, cutting in between the sprocket holes.

- Pull out a little film and thread the film through the matchbox.

HINT: Make sure the emulsion side (non-shiny side) is facing the pinhole.

- Using some clear sticky tape, splice the ends of a new film with an empty film canister together neatly.

HINT: Make sure the edges are lined up so the film can pass into the empty canister. Tape both sides and make sure the joint is secure.

- Slide the match tray back into the box, with the square on the film.

- Turn the spindle of the empty film canister so that the slack film is wound into it.

- Make sure the edges of each film canister are pushed up tight to the matchbox and no film can be seen.

Step 9: Light Proof Your Camera

- It's important that no light can get into the camera other than through the pinhole!

- The most important places to seal are between the film canisters and the matchbox.

- Tape the slits between the matchbox and the film canister.

- Tape all over the back and sides of the box so that no card is showing.

HINT: Do not tape over the pinhole or the slit where the shutter slides into.

- DECORATE YOUR CAMERA! :):):):)

Step 10: Image Exposure

- Download the free app, Pocket Light Meter, on your iPhone or iPad.

- On a small piece of paper, write down this chart and stick it to the back of your camera.

EV: [Exposure Value]

13: 2 sec

12: 6 sec

11: 13 sec

10: 25 sec

9: 50 sec

8: 150 sec

7: 400 sec

- From here, Ms Britz will teach you how to take pictures.

Step 11: Just a Few of Many Examples... Will Add More Soon!

<p>This is a fantastic first Instructable. Thank you for sharing and for the clear instructions!</p>
<p>this is very good! I could understand it well!</p>
<p>cool</p>
<p>ok</p>
<p>ok</p>
<p>How many clicks are you advancing the film for each photo?</p>
6 to 8 clicks I find is sufficient if your inside box is square. 8 clicks if rectangle. ?
This is really awesome. Great instructable. Is your first image taken using this camera?
I would guess not that's the kind of photo if you used a DSLR with fisheye lens and a long exposure
<p>A camera is a camera. In theory what you can do with a dslr you can do with any camera, even a matchbox pinhole. The ability to create these types of images you are referring to is in the knowledge, not the camera. </p><p>Movement is determined by shutter speed and because of the tiny pinhole, they tend towards longer exposures, giving you the ability to show movement and time to allow a person (in the case of the picture your enquiring about) to walk through the scene slowly and be captured. Hope you enjoy!</p>
I am curious about that as well!

About This Instructable

8,009views

229favorites

License:

More by lbritzphoto:Photographic Composition Elements Matchbox Pinhole Camera 
Add instructable to: