Since 2001, photographers in many countries have celebrated the last Sunday in April as the Day of Pinhole Photography ( World Pinhole Photography Day – WPPD – often only briefly: Pinhole Day). This photo Day of Action, 2021 to April 25 falls is to understand a symbolic tribute to one of the oldest photographic techniques in the first place and deserves its own contribution in the calendar of holidays curious from around the world. So why are we celebrating pinhole photography today?
Who started Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day?
In contrast to many of the other curious World Days gathered here, the background and origins of the Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day are relatively well documented. This special day of pinhole photography goes back to the year 2001 on the initiative of a group of fans of this photo technology. In the meantime, the name of this day of action is also protected by trademark law (see also the list of further links below).
When do we celebrate World Pinhole Photography Day?
But why the initiators chose the last Sunday in April as the date of all times in the course of research for the present article, I was unable to find out. Since Sunday is usually the day of the week on which most people do not have to work or have a day off, at least this part of the date selection seems plausible.
As always with such curious holidays with a flexible date, the following is an overview of all upcoming dates in the next ten years:
- Sunday, April 28, 2019
- Sunday, April 26, 2020
- Sunday, April 25, 2021
- Sunday, April 24th 2022
- Sunday April 30th, 2023
- Sunday April 28, 2024
- Sunday, April 27, 2025
- Sunday April 26th 2026
- Sunday April 25, 2027
- Sunday April 30th 2028
- Sunday April 29, 2029
- Sunday April 28th 2030
Photography without a lens – the principle of the pinhole camera
As mentioned at the beginning, pinhole camera photography is one of the oldest photo techniques ever, which has been used in numerous shapes, sizes and variants since its invention.
In contrast to modern photo cameras, with this photography technique the light does not fall through an optical lens or objective, but is captured through a tiny, closable hole and onto a light-sensitive material (e.g. photo paper or film) in a dark place Projected chamber. In theory, every light-tight container (e.g. shoe box, tin cans, etc.) can be converted into a pinhole camera. The best-known example here is certainly the so-called camera obscura , which most of you will probably be familiar with from physics lessons. But regardless of whether you built a pinhole camera or a camera obscura, the principle used is essentially always the same.
The pinhole camera fades out almost all of the incident light, except for a small bundle of light rays in a straight line between the object and the image point, and in this way captures a real image. The respective image sharpness is determined by the diameter of the hole sharpness, which ensures an even distribution of sharpness and gives the images a flat character. Since this hole is made with a sewing needle in most cases, the pinhole camera is also known as a pinhole camera.
Goals and Intention: How can you best celebrate World Pinhole Photography Day?
The initiators of the international day of pinhole photography would like to use this occasion to refer to the importance and above all the fun of lensless photography and to focus on the photographic aspect – apart from today’s megapixel and technology battle:
“Lensless photography has a special atmosphere that has to do with dedication. And this takes time. Forget the snapshot, it can take several minutes for the film (or photo paper) to be fully exposed. While we are used to taking pictures on a daily basis to look at the photographed places on the screen at home, taking pictures with the pinhole camera demands a little more patience. The choice of motif gets something meditative, unrepeatable. “
( Source: Press release on Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day 2012.)
And with some success: Because there were only 291 participants in the first edition in 2001, in recent years around 3,500 photographers from over 70 countries have taken part in the Worldwide Pinhole Photography Day. Accordingly, the WWPD team invites all interested photographers to build a pinhole camera between April 23rd and May 1st to take pictures and upload them to the website of the day of action. One photo per artist will be added to the gallery for each participant.
With this in mind: Pinhole cameras out and you all have a great pinhole day. No matter where you celebrate this day of photographic action in the world.