Movie buffs may be familiar with lomography, a genre of photography that explores crappy analog cameras and the unpredictable images they produce. But digital cameras naturally struggle to fit into this space. That’s why Christopher Getschmann (Volzo on YouTube) wanted to make some intentionally shaky “digital toy cameras” with a Pi Zero and some very strange lenses.
The digital toy cameras are quite unique, with custom 3D printed housing, random components (that’s a yellow LEGO piece in the image above), and of course some Raspberry Pi brains. A cheap Pi Zero W powers the cameras, plus a 5MP Pi image sensor, which it doesn’t supposed to work with interchangeable lenses. (That’s what the second-generation Pi camera is for.)
As Getschmann points out, it’s hard to find a small and decent image sensor without buying the Pi ecosystem, which is why there probably aren’t too many custom digital cameras floating around. That’s pretty interesting, but I’m more excited about those custom lenses.
In the spirit of Lomography, Christopher Getschmann has put together the most ridiculous interchangeable lenses I’ve ever seen in a digital camera. There’s a tilting lens that makes distant subjects look like toys, a rising and falling lens that eliminates distortion when shooting buildings, and a dual-lens system to imitate TLR cameras like the Rolleiflex.
If you want a complete picture of these cameras, I suggest you watch Getschmann’s YouTube video and visit the tinkerer’s blog. You can also try building your own digital toy camera with resources uploaded to Getschmann’s GitHub.
Source: Volzo via The Raspberry Pi Foundation