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The technique of pinhole photography

The photographs of Portraits in the Square are made with the technique of pinhole photography.

These are photographs taken without any lens but simply through a small hole, about the size of a period at the end of a sentence.
 Such a photo can be taken using ordinary cameras, including digital ones, with a pinhole instead of a lens. Refined results can be had by using cameras specially built for lensless photography. It is very creative, fun, and educational to use a self-built camera from common materials such as shoe boxes, tomato cans, or tea cans. Any container that can be made light-proof can be transformed into a pinhole camera.


Why photograph slowly with a pinhole:

Liberation. The feeling of being a master of the images I produce and not a servo-mechanism of the machine.


Magic. Whatever camera is available, whatever the degree of technical skill, the result is magic.


World. The world seen from the little hole is a timeless, silent, enchanted world. An unreal and very present world, an effect of disorientation and fascinating tension.


Time. The suspended, rarefied atmosphere that dominates lens-less images is the result of a very special relationship with time. Forget the snapshot: it can take seconds or minutes for the image to appear. Pinhole photography is the photography of patience, of meditation. With traditional photography, and even more so with digital, you shoot and run, you end up seeing the places only later, at home.


Ecology of Mind. Pinhole camera operators wait for the little box to do its job and in the meantime they look around, they think. No more anguish about the "bad" photo: an unforeseen intrusion of light, a diffraction, a "blur" are accidents that pinhole camera operators take into account, accept, even value as a contribution of chance to the artistic creation.

Praise for controlled imprecision, philosophy of respect for the order of the world.

It is an ecology of the image that becomes an ecology of the mind.

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