On the pedestrian bridge
It was one of those lazy Saturday mornings when I was awake way before I wanted to be, so I was already in a pissy mood. The Boy had decided to annoy us both by doing typical six year-old stuff. In order to preserve everyone’s sanity, I decided to take the boy out, along with two box cameras, one for him and one for me.
Since I only had one digital camera, I tried to get him interested in focusing on a subject and then I would try to take a photo through his box camera. I’m still trying to get him interested in focusing the lens on a subject instead of being fascinated with the flash going off. He has his own cheap camera but he only cares about clicking the buttons and watching the flash go off. I was hoping this would maybe get him interested in photography. Well, not at all. I think he kept asking about the flash and where was it and why wasn’t it going off. But we had a good time walking through the neighborhood, just spending time together. And we gave The Husband a good hour of quiet time.
They sure don’t make ’em like they used to.
I love TTV. It’s like Instagram or Hipstamatic without the iphone. Speaking of which: I actually tried out Instagram and I can understand its popularity and appeal but I really didn’t like that I had to create an account to use it. I quickly deleted it. I ended up downloading a few other photo apps just because they didn’t ask for information or an account. I could just use the damned app!
Back in the day, The Husband and I used to collect old cameras. There is something beautiful about the design of an old school camera. We had several box cameras and ancient video cameras (made way before camcorders came into style). Due to whatever reason, mainly that we didn’t know if they worked or if we could find film and/or develop it if we did, we decided to give most of them away.
Fast forward to a few years later and I ran across some random photography blog (wished I had bookmarked it). One of the things this photographer talked about was his love of old cameras and how he found a use for them without film. He talked about this technique called Through the Viewfinder or TTV photography. Long story short, you take your old box camera and use it as a lens for your digital camera. Your digital camera doesn’t have to be anything fancier than a point and shoot, although I would imagine that an SLR or a DSLR would give you more artistic license and controls.
I instantly knew I had to find an old box camera. I searched on Craigslist until I saw an old Anscoflex for twenty bucks. I played around until found a setting with my digital lens that I liked and that wasn’t completely blurry (note to self: always switch to macro setting). I’ve since found a Duaflex and an Argus 75.
The thing that I love about the photos is that 1) it puts an old camera to use; 2) the images produced has this dreamy, beautiful effect. I guess you could use Instagram on your Iphone or Android but this is so much more fun; 3) other than the cost of the camera, it’s good cheap fun.
Note the weird blur mark at the top of the picture.
There are some drawbacks. Because I’m using a point and shoot, I can’t properly hold my camera still so I end up with these weird blur marks on the edges that I have to edit out in post-production (hee hee., that would be Photoshop). And all the images are reversed. Some people don’t have a problem with this, but I do. So I have to flip them post-production (again in Photoshop or in Preview). It can also be a real pain to lug out my entire rig.
Went a little crazy with the saturation.
But I really love it. As soon as it’s not raining, I’ll be out again with my rig.