World Pinhole Photography Day

Manhattan Skyline. Pinhole photography by Alina Oswald

World Pinhole Photography Day

Several years ago I became part of a photo society here, in NYC. My first assignment was pinhole photography. I believe my first image to get a few people’s attention was a pinhole image I called “Bed of Tulips.” Some might be familiar with that image and the story behind it. And, just to reiterate, it’s a pinhole photograph I captured with my Nikon D300 and no lens, well, a camera body cap with a hole drilled through its center.

Bed of Tulips. Pinhole Photography by Alina Oswald. All Rights Reserved.
Bed of Tulips. Pinhole Photography by Alina Oswald. All Rights Reserved.

According to the WPPD website, World Pinhole Photography Day (WPPD) falls on the last Sunday in April. That’s today, April 29, 2018.

Pinhole photography takes us back to the beginning of photography and to camera obscura, or “dark room” (from Camera, meaning room, and Obscura, meaning darkened or dark). One of the camera obscura walls has an aperture (pinhole). Light passes through that pinhole to project the inverse image of an external subject on the wall opposite the pinhole wall. That’s known as the “camera obscura effect.”

In the most simple terms, much like camera obscura, a pinhole camera is a…box with a pinhole drilled through one of its walls.

Here are a few examples of pinhole images:

Manhattan sunrise observed through a pinhole:

Manhattan Sunrise - Pinhole Photography by Alina Oswald.
Manhattan Sunrise – Pinhole Photography by Alina Oswald. #tbt

Nowadays, we can still experiment with pinhole photography, and we don’t need to drill pinholes through the walls of any boxes. We can purchase a digital pinhole camera or create one ourselves, using the bodies of our DSLRs and their caps.

Make sure that you drill right through the center of that cap. Place a tiny piece of aluminum foil over it, on the inside of the cap, and use photographer’s tape to hold the piece of foil in place. Use a needle to make a tiny (pin)hole exactly through the center of that foil.


Remember, there’s no actual lens in pinhole photography; hence, no f-stop value to adjust, only ISO and Shutter speed.

Give pinhole photography a try and get to see the world in a whole new way. Have fun while at it, too!

Happy World Pinhole Photography Day!

And, as always, thanks for stopping by!

Happy Sunday!

Alina Oswald


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