Form follows function – lets play

It’s a bird! It’s a plane! No it’s the super cool camera designed by Erin Fong. Photography is a playful medium. It lets us all capture so many beautiful memories and create amazing narratives. Of course, a picture speaks a thousand words. As cameras and photography equipment becomes more and more technological and readily available, the design of the equipment is starting to become more and more boring. Do you remember when Polaroid used to come out with funky cameras that produced instant photos? Or the endless opportunities offered by Kodak’s Box Brownie? Or when you realised that funky fish eye lens could produce true art? Do you remember the first time you picked up a borrowed Spotmatic and began to snap pictures?



Cameras of yesteryear used to allow people to see the world as a place of childlike wonder. Erin Fong’s funky design harkens back to a simple principle – cameras used to be fun once upon a time. A camera was a way to do some serious work while having fun. My favorite photographer Henri Cartier Bresson became famous for his snapshots and gave the world some thing to cherish. He classified the camera as, ‘a sketch book, an instrument of intuition and spontaneity, the master of the instant which, in visual terms, questions and decides simultaneously.’


Today, all cameras pretty much look alike. They keep on getting bigger and bulkier. In such a market Fong has introduced the Nova DSLR Camera. A Camera that offers the playful joystick function of a game console like Nintendo, Playstation, Xbox etc. The camera has arms that give the photographer the ability to take steady shots. It enables the photographer to focus the image better and does not put strain on the neck and the hands.


Fong states, ‘The Nova DSLR Camera takes different forms with the mobility of the camera arms, giving comfort to left-handed and right-handed users. In addition, the buttons are located at the fingertips allowing users to simultaneously take pictures and easily locate the features they need. Whether the Nova is used with one or two handles, the flexibility of the camera’s form gives users a greater versatility in image capturing along with an enjoyable experience while using the Nova camera.’



Fong’s camera design will give camera designers and manufacturers something to think about. It breaks many norms and allows playful interaction with the product. It also shows that design doesn’t need to look uniform and boring but there is always room for experimentation. This camera design shows promise and it may revolutionize the camera design market and perhaps in the future we will see some more new and interesting designs for cameras.



Images from Eric Fong’s portfolio and


Article also published on the Amvona blog


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