Saturday, May 19, 2007

Dirkon pinhole camera

For my birthday, my brother printed the plans of the Dirkon pinhole camera for me. I spent quite a few nights slowly constructing it while watching TV at the same time. It just happened that April 29, 2007 was Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day, so I took it out for a spin.

Former Soviet Union rangefinders are Russian clones of German design, and the quality can be quite good; my Dirkon is an American (your truly) clone of Czechoslovakia design, and quality is awful... I got light leaks everywhere and the film advance mechanism is totally suspect. The spacing between each frame is quite large, and sometimes I forgot to turn the knob enough and got some overlapping frames. At the end of the roll, I didn't know and forced the film advance knob to turn, and broke it... The lens hood also popped off at the end of the roll...
Sounds like an awful experience? Well, not at all. There is something about going back to the most basic kind of camera that gave me a warm and fuzzy feeling. The results remind me of the first photograph of a person at Wikipedia. My photos were blurry and mostly overexposed, but there's no denying the unique character of them. I doubt can I replicate the effect in Photoshop. The most satisfying thing is that I constructed this camera by my own hands. Putting a pinhole body cap on an SLR body is easy; making the entire body is something on another level. I can only imagine how Mr. Yasuhara felt when he created the T981.


(Dirkon pinhole x Kroger 200)

Friday, May 18, 2007

ayumi hamasaki x HelloKitty x LUMIX collaboration camera!

Ayu has done it again! Already the LUMIX representative, now she got her own version of DMC-FX30 camera. Could this start a new trend in camera styles? When are we gonna see a Bape x Leica camo M8?

For about US$450, one gets a FX30 with special face plate, special box and case. The FX30 is the exact same spec but with a special shutdown logo . It is very stylish and I have to say fits the Asian taste extremely well. While Ayu's popularity has waned somewhat in the recent years, she's still a strong fashion icon and it shows in her new line of ayumi hamasaki x HelloKitty items.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Canon PowerShot S5 IS manages to bore the masses

This year has been exciting in the world of superzooms, and finally we saw the announcement of the Canon S5. It is...disappointing. Whereas the competition decide to up the ante with features like RAW support, 15x zoom and wider wide angles, Canon has decided to simply put in a higher resolution 8 megapixel sensor and call it a day.

Aside from the face detection autofocus feature that became standard this year, I really cannot find anything different between the S3 and the S5. Ok, it does look sexier. If you can find the S3 (or even the S2, which is almost identical to the S3...) for a deal, there's simply no reason to pay the premium to get the S5.