Friday, May 8, 2020

from f295: Making a panoramic Populist

f295 was an international discussion forum begun and administered by Tom Persinger. Originally just about pinhole photography, it expanded into all kinds of alternative methods.  It was active from 2004 until 2015 but it remains on-line. Recently it disappeared from the web for a few days, and that prompted me to decide to reprise some of my favorites here at Pinholica, for backup if no other reason.

Matt Ashbrook recently posted on Facebook that he had built a Populist with a 24x70mm format. He wondered if there would be coverage across the whole frame or if it would fade to black at the edges. That reminded me of the first time I built a panoramic camera and posted about it on f295.  Here are two posts about that camera. 

The first was posted on June 29th 2008 under the title Panoramic Populist

My curiosity piqued by PinApples Domino panoramic camera, I put together a version of the Populist with the same film format.

I took two patterns, cut one off at the film bay and one off at the end of the camera and glued them together on the card stock. So the image width should be 36mm + 36mm + 24mm = 96mm.

If that internal assembly on the right looks a little different,I had experimented with making the film bays out of individual little boxes, and for this ultrawide format it seemed to have an advantage over extending the internal assembly to a wider format.

Otherwise, it's just a very wide Populist. I fit it out with a .20mm Gilder EMS hole.

Each frame 21 clicks or about 2 1/2 turns of the winder.

Now to go get some film and give it a whirl. I'm trying to think of some scenes with a dark center and bright edges. This thing is at least two stops different from center to edge.

Several days later after exposing a roll of film in it, I added to the post.

Here are some pictures. It looks like once again, I underestimated the light transmission qualities of the card stock (cereal boxes seem OK, but these Canfield Sparkling water cases seem to have a problem) and got some low level red fogging which isn't noticable in a normally exposed image (like the center of these images), but really dominates in a low exposure situation, like the outside edges. This really freaks my scanner out and makes it pretty nearly impossible to get anything approaching normal color.

Some examples.

Here's a few that were taken quickly enough together so that red fogging didn't have such an impact.
I guess, I'll cover the thing with 3M 235, and try again.

After the promised light proofing, I posted again under the title Panoramica on July 7, 2008

Here's some results from the lightproofed Panoramic Populist.

It's amazing how much variation there is in the drop off from center to edge depending on the scene. I tried to minimize it with burning and dodging, and sometimes you can bring it back almost to unnoticeable levels. This is pretty much the full 96mm wide image area.

And sometimes it goes to black nowhere close to the edge depending on the illumination of the scene. Here it's pretty bright on one side and fades way to black on the other. Also kind of amazing the white chair could expose the film in the less than a second it took me to get my arm back from opening the shutter. The whole exposure was 36 seconds.

It's pretty wide angle. here's me working in my office. This room is 8 by 15 feet. and this one is cropped down a bit in the long dimension.

Too bad I couldn't hold more still in this one.

Didn't get the colors and exposures as balanced in this one, but it does take advantage of the wide angle to emphasize my more prominent features.

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