It’s fun to change things up every so often. And what better way to do it than adjust when the Spring meetup for the Toronto Film Shooters! This year our spring meetup saw several changes from the normal flow of the event. First off it happened on a Sunday; secondly, we had a company host the event, Burlington Camera and the reason behind these two things was so that it fell on World Pinhole Photography Day! And while the weather had been looking terrible even as late as Thursday, when I arrived at the Burlington Camera parking lot, the sun was shining, and while chilly it was a perfect day for some pinhole photography. Oddly enough there were only a handful of people shooting pinhole. The store had several single-use pinhole cameras made from takeaway containers loaded with a sheet of Ilford Photo Paper. John Meadows was shooting with a dedicated camera, and three of use had pinhole adapters on our regular cameras. I decided to use my Nikon F90 with a Rising Pinhole Wide. I’ve used such an adapter in the past with results that I didn’t too much enjoy. Maybe a second chance is all I needed and having a roll of thirty-six gives me, statistically speaking a better chance at finding more images that I like than a roll of fifteen.
From the store, we headed south towards Lake Ontario. This part of Burlington is mostly residential with a strange mix of modern and historic homes. We would pause every so often to capture an image. Even those who were shooting with standard cameras paused as us with pinholes and tripods set up and took our images. I had brought several choices of film to shoot through my F90, Tri-X, Fomapan 100, and Rollei RPX 25. While it was sunny enough to shoot the RPX 25, I settled on Fomapan 100. The reason being that my light meter (Gossen Lunasix F) has the smallest aperture reading of f/128 and the pinhole in the adapter is f/175. Thankfully I referenced the Mr Pinhole website to give me the EI rating to set my meter so that I just had to take the f/128 reading and shoot that shutter speed on the camera to expose the film at box speed. Most of my exposures were only one or two seconds long with the longest being fifteen. By the time we hit Spencer Smith Park, I was already through most of the roll and ended up shooting a full thirty-five frames. I guess I just stopped thinking too hard and learned to embrace it.
Soft, slightly out of focus, and a bit of visual whiplash from my usual fare. I’m not totally for these images, but I’m not totally against them either. I guess this pinhole thing is an acquired taste, but oddly enough these results are ones that make me want to try it again. Looking at them I think I can certainly improve my skill and technique. So there’s a strong chance I’ll be heading out again with the Rising Pinhole adapter. And who knows maybe with a little practice I might start looking at a dedicated pinhole camera, or even work with my brother on building one for next year’s World Pinhole Photography Day, certainly one in medium format! If you want to see the rest of my images from the day you can view the Flickr Album. And if you’re interested in joining us, our next meetup is on June 22nd in Peterborough, Ontario, details are on the event (RSVP On Facebook or Photowalk.me) and join our community on Facebook or Flickr. I’d also like to thank Burlington Camera, James McFarlane, Tyler March, and JC’s Hot Bagels for everything done for the Toronto Film Shooters!