Falling Plate, the first cameras for hand held shooting

Since its invention photography was synonymous with tripod, black cloth and ground glass. The new category that emerged in the late nineteenth century, shortly after the invention of silver gelatin emulsions, added the much quicker, and sometimes indiscreet, instant photography. Loaded with 12 glass plates, they used distance-scale focus and optical viewfinder framing. Also known as detective cameras, magazine cameras or simply hand cameras, because “hand” photography was still new, they opened new horizons for photography. read more …

Horizont from KMZ, a panoramic camera with swing lens

The concept of sweeping a scene with a rotating lens was introduced very early in photography. It has its own advantages, disadvantages and characteristics if compared to the simple use of a wide angle to produce panoramic pictures. Understand what happens optically and how to explore both systems.  read more…


Super Angulon f/5.6 – Schneider Kreuznach

Launched in the 60’s, the Super Angulon is one of the best wide angle lenses ever made. It covers 13 x 18 cm, if one wants to use its 105º angle of view. But fitted to a 4×5″ camera, like a Linhof Technika, it allows plenty of movements and is capable of superb results.  read more …

Manoeuvres with a Petzval type portrait lens

Derogy - Rapide n4 - Petzval typeWith modern lenses it is possible to focus on any part of an image and get a sharp spot while keeping composition as it pleases us. With old lenses, Petzvals for instance, even adjusting the best focus, the peripheral parts of an image will never come out sharp, unless we stop down the lens. This article discusses how to use a large-format camera for situations where the subject we want sharp is far from the optical center of the lens and we want it fully open. read more …

Objectif Achromatique – Lerebours et Secrétan ~1855

This is a lens that probably made some daguerreotypes more than 160 years ago. A doublet with a diaphragm at the front and has for decades been the preferred lens for landscapes. In this article you will learn the story of one of the pioneering makers of photography: Noël-Marie Lerebours, who was also a publisher and daguerreotypist in Paris. See a recent photo taken with this lens having as support an 18 x 24 cm dry plate. read more …

Understand focal length, angle of view and image circle

How can a 300mm lens be wide-angle and another 300mm lens be considered long focus? In this article you will learn or review the three basic parameters that define a lens: focal length, angle of view and image circle. You will be able to understand and evaluate the use of any lens for any format.  leia mais…

Solar UV Exposure Meter | complete project

Complete tutorial for building a device that allows you to make sun exposures with the same amount of UV radiation even at different times and atmospheric conditions. Useful for cyanotype, gum bichromat, salted paper and other historical photographic printing processes.

Magnetic Stirrer

Complete and detailed tutorial for you to produce a magnetic stirrer. It is an invaluable aid for preparing solutions in analog photography, such as developers and fixers. Assembly is very simple and uses low cost components.

Enlarger head using RGB LEDs –...

Complete project for the construction of a photographic amplifier head using RGB LEDs. Includes your timer / mixer. It allows the use of multi-contrast papers and can be fixed on a 4x5 camera for use as an amplifier.

Spot retouching in black and white...

Tutorial shows you how to spot retouch black and white photos either by chemical reduction, or by depositing pigments to darken small areas. Procedure can be used for fault correction or creatively as photograph interventions. Example shows how to enhance catchlights.

Respooling 127 film from 120

Complete tutorial about how to cut 120 to 127 film format and spool it into a 127 film reel. Materials, devices, video and measurements, everything you need to know to use again your cute Baby 127 camera.

Contact printer

Tutorial with video for building up a photography contact printer. That can be used for large format photographs and also for UV alternative/historical processes like Van Dyke Brown, Cyanotype, Gum Dichromate, Salted Paper, Platinum/Palladium among others.

Bellows project tailor-made for you

Application creates a .pdf for a bellows used on photo cameras of any size. The drawing indicates the cut-and-fold lines in life size. You indicate the measures, pay via Pay Pal and receive the project by email within a few minutes.

Using a Petzval lens for potraits

Using Petzval-type lenses for portraits when the subject's face is out of the center of the image requires some care. The article discusses and gives an example of how to decentralize the lens to reposition its optical axis over more peripheral areas of the photographic frame.