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How to Make and Use a Pinhole Camera

By using common household materials, you can make a camera that will produce pictures. Making and using a pinhole camera will acquaint you with the basic elements of photography while providing an inexpensive and interesting way to take pictures. This bulletin explains how to make and use two types of pinhole cameras-a cartridge pinhole camera and a can or box pinhole camera. You'll be proud of the pictures you can take with the camera you have constructed.
Picture taken with a pinhole camera.
Pinhole size 1/75 inch.
Film-to-pinhole distance: 4 1/2 inches.
Exposure: 2 seconds.
Subject in bright sunlight.

What is a Pinhole Camera?

A pinhole camera is a small, light-tight can or box with a black interior and a tiny hole in the center of one end. See illustrations below. You can design it to accept roll or sheet film. The two ends of the camera are parallel. The end opposite the pinhole is flat so that the film is held in a flat plane. The pinhole has a cover to prevent light from entering the camera when you aren't taking a picture.

Pinhole Camera Pinhole Camera
Can or Box pinhole cameras

More Information

If you have questions not answered by this bulletin, contact Kodak in your country. For photo tips and ideas for pictures, see the many Kodak photo books for sale by your photo dealer.

The Kodak materials described in this publication are available from those dealers normally supplying Kodak products. Other materials may be used, but similar results may not be obtained.