zero image

The woods are lovely by Jana Uyeda

Just over 3 years ago I picked up a camera and started making images. I had been experimenting with film-making a year earlier but found that it didn't quite suit me. Storyboarding and the process of recording and editing video and audio was too much for me, so I sold off my video camera and considered some different options. I still wanted to capture images so eventually I decided to buy a DSLR, one of those big cameras I saw people using over at Pike Place Market. The first DSLR I picked up was a Nikon D5000, you can even see my first image from it here: Flowers After I bought that camera I learned to understand exposure, aperture, shutter speeds, etcetera, but returned to film when my Aunt gave me her Nikon FG. I loved it and began shooting film more and more until I eventually sold off my Nikon gear. I started shooting Holgas and Lomo cameras and eventually picked up a pinhole. The funny thing is, even after I'd decided that I wanted to focus on photography, I realized there were still so many more creative directions to consider.

Ok, so I'm a photographer, I shoot film and I prefer pinhole cameras, but there are so many paths ahead of me still. As a pinhole photographer I recognize how broad the scope of pinhole imaging is and that's exciting. It's been a great first 3 years with my cameras and I look forward to more experimentation, discussion and growth.

Here are my favorite photos I took during my long weekend at Olympic National Park. Enjoy!

early morning walk

lake crescent

its log

WPPD updates to come by Jana Uyeda

WPPD selfieHi everyone, how's your project coming along? After a very productive few weeks following Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day I've been spending time developing my film and sending some rolls to the lab. Lots of freshly developed work to scan in before the 5/31/2013 WPPD deadline. I'll update this blog with this year's submission in a few days.

All the scanning is certainly enough to keep me busy but the next few weekends will be especially fun. Nate Matos from Pdexposures is coming up from Portland for a #BelieveInFilm stroll around Seattle and it looks like it will be a busy day. If you're in Seattle, please come out, shoot a roll with friends and have a beer with us! We are meeting on Sunday at 11 a.m. PST at Caffe Fiore in Ballard.

I'm also working on improving my anamorphic soup can pinhole camera. I'd like to have more cans prepared. One roll of 120 should have enough film to load four cans then I can experiment and take notes. I'm going to leave some tape on the outside of the can so I know where the film seam is and hope to place the actual anamorphic curve in the middle of the film. Then I'm going to take notes about the angle of the camera to understand how to frame my images through the pinhole.

For now, as I work through a few more pinhole scans, I'm sharing a self portrait I took at the Olympic Sculpture Park on WPPD. You can see the Space Needle behind me.

Cheers and mahalo for stopping by!

My first pinhole film swap by Jana Uyeda

A few months ago Alex, who manages the Pinholista site, contacted me on Flickr about doing a pinhole film swap and I eagerly agreed to do it. I've seen some intriguing film swap double exposures online and liked the surreal and often humorous images that resulted from these collaborations. There's something very liberating about doing a double exposure with no knowledge of what images were previously exposed on that roll. I've seen some terrific work from photographers who do their own double exposures, capturing specific images and overlapping them for effect. In this film swap with Alex I had no idea what to expect so the anticipation was high. We decided on doing one roll on Ilford HP5+ and another on Portra 400, but then I messed up advancing 6x6 in my 6x9 Zero Image pinhole camera, so I exposed a second roll of Kodak Ektar. It took awhile to expose the rolls but once I'd finished, I packed up the film and sent it off to Alex who lives in Norwich, Norfolk, UK. You can see the first roll of Portra on Alex's Flickr photostream and I'm putting together the images from our film swap here.

I would definitely recommend participating in a film swap and if you don't know of anyone get in touch with me. I'm a bit addicted to it now!

film swap_009
film swap_009
ferry bench
ferry bench

Making progress happen by Jana Uyeda

Good morning! Just a quick update today as it's Chinese New Year and I'm headed out to Chinatown for lion dances, dim sum and more. Come out if you can! A few months ago I decided to place my pinhole camera on the lazy susan at a dim sum restaurant just to see what the final result would look like.

Dim Sum

I loved the final image but wanted to work a bit more on having something in focus while the camera rotated. A friend lent me a lazy susan and I did another experiment.

colbys house

The beer can wasn't secure enough and I'm not sure I like these experiments with black and white film. I loaded Kodak Portra 400 and went for dinner at a pizza shop in Ballard to expose another frame while rotating the camera on a lazy susan.

ballard pizza

It's getting better and I feel like some progress has been made.

I hope you're all staying warm and getting out to shoot today. Have a great weekend and I look forward to reading your posts next week. Mahalo!

Pinhole Prep: My lo-fi is too hi-fi by Jana Uyeda

I am constantly amazed at the resolution and clarity of my Zero Image 6x9. In this recent shot from the Triple X Diner in Issaquah, the camera captured the details of this intensely busy space and surpassed my expectations once again. XXX Root Beer

Right now I'd like to move towards less sharp, less clear images to experiment with abstract forms and light. I prefer odd distortions and suggestive imagery right now. Maybe winter is starting to affect me in strange ways, but if my Zero Image is considered lo-fi then I'd like something lo-lo-lo-fi. I've been thinking about making my own pinhole, so to achieve the lowest-fi camera of my dreams, I'm going to create my own weird little pinhole box. There's a wealth of resources online from people who have created some truly spectacular pinholes.

There are lots of guides for making pinhole cameras:

Kodak: How to Make and Use a Pinhole Camera Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day: Resources DIY Photography: 23 Pinhole Cameras That You Can Build At Home Justin Quinnell: How To Do Stuff David Balihar: PinholeDesigner 2.0 (software) and resources

I'm going to start quickly and easily by poking holes in beer cars and exposing a sheet of 4x5 film. My Mod54 is on its way so I can start developing my own sheet film at home. Thank goodness. My local lab turnaround time on sheet film can be as long as one week.

I also shot a roll of Efke IR820 35mm film in January and want to try infrared 4x5 pinholes for Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day. The Rollei 4x5 IR film is backordered at Freestyle Photographic but estimated delivery is slated for February 8. I'm not sure how long to expose the film and even less sure how to meter with the slow asa of infrared with the R72 filter so any insight you can provide would be much appreciated. I may even attempt an IR pinhole from a beer can.

One thing at a time! What are your plans for Pinhole Day?