Posts Tagged ‘ Camera ’

Home made cameras – add spice to your life

People have hobbies, some go out fishing, some paint, some like gardening and others like taking pictures. But then there are those who have unusual but very interesting hobbies. One of those unusual hobbyists are the Howard Boys. They build their own cameras. They collect recycled material and build fully functioning cameras.

The camera on the right was created using recycled brass. Various parts including the body have been soldered together. The shutter and lens were purchased for this project. There is a view finder and a separate range finder to focus through the camera. The camera uses a manual focus.

The camera uses the old rangefinder technique. Howard Boys explain this technique on their blog and state that, ‘The majority of cameras nowadays are single lens reflex where an automatic mirroring allows the photographer to see just what is being captured and focus directly. Prior to this a “rangefinder” system was used in which the distance to the object being photographed was measured. Rangefinders existed independently or were “coupled” i.e. adjustment of the focusing of the lens was directly coupled to the rangefinder so one didn’t have to read a distance on the rangefinder and then adjust the lens focus. Of course modern developments allow for automatic focusing. Coupled rangefinders became used more generally in the 1930’s.’ The Howard Boys have developed a camera that uses the rangefinder system.

More information about the camera can be found on their blog. The Howard Boys give us all inspiration and show that it’s not impossible to create fun cameras at home this Christmas. A home made camera will definitely make a unique gift.

Written for and published on the Amvona Blog


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