Friday, November 27, 2009

The Spinshot panoramic camera

The Spinshot is a slit-scan camera in league with cameras like Globuscope, Hulcherama, Roundshot etc. I recently discovered a great source of information on Spinshot provided by Mrs. Heather Oelklaus. Click here to read her very engrossing article titled "The art of spinning" which appeared in the JPG Magazine.

Her book titled "Long & skinny" showcases some of the great panoramic photographs she has taken using the Spinshot and other panoramic cameras. To have a preview of the book click here.

To see more of her works visit her website .

I thank Heather Oelklaus for allowing me to use the picture of this camera.

It's important to note that the Spinshot was invented and fabricated by Rick Corrales, a talented photographer and engineer. Unfortunately he passed away in 2005, only at the age of 48. You can have more information on Rick Corrales here

If you're interested in the internal mechanisms of such a camera have a look at Patent 1  and Patent 2 filed by Richard Corrales.

P.S: A crude emulation of the Spinshot can me made with a Diana camera. For details visit this site.

In case you own a Spinshot which is in need of servicing, you can send it to 3R Camera of New York.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Pics from Olaf's new panoramic camera

Here goes three example pics of Olaf Matthes' pannaroma inspired camera. As you can see, the 50mm Mamiya lens is very sharp. For more details of this camera view this post.

I thank Mr. Matthes for allowing to use these pictures.

Another gem from Olaf Matthes

Here comes another great piece of craftsmanship from Olaf Matthes. Those who are still not familiar with the work of this great camera maker click here .

This camera, according to Olaf was inspired by Thomas Roma's Pannaroma. It's quite similar to the Pannaroma, with the same negative format and also uses a Mamiya Press 50mm lens. Some parts are CNC milled as you can see in the bottom picture. The lens mount consists of the first two parts of the spacer rings of a Mamiya macro extension ring. In the main aluminum block there is a circular slot and the spacer ring directly fits into that.

For the details of construction click here.

The pictures taken by this camera are very sharp. I'll be posting a few examples in my next post.

Many thanks to Mr. Matthes for providing the information and pics. of this camera.

Friday, November 20, 2009

A paper made rangefinder

This is a novel gadget by Thomas Achtemichuk . You can customize,download and print this card sized rangefinder. Ideal for cameras that use zone focusing like my Horizon. I use a 1930's Simon-Brown instrument but this handmade rangefinder is possibly going to replace the old one.

Get this DIY paper rangefinder from here.

Monday, November 16, 2009

A great handmade 6x12 panoramic camera

Have a look how Steve Smith constructs his 6X12 step-by-step from simple starting materials. The lens he'll be going to use is a large format Super Angulon 65mm. He also fabricated a helicoid focussing mount of his own. The viewfinder is handmade too. The camera is now almost complete. To have a regular update visit this page.

I thank Mr. Steve Smith for allowing me to use this picture. To see more of his works have a visit to his site.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

The Panoraflex 6x17 panoramic camera

Panoraflex is a modular panoramic camera with solid metal body and supports lens shift. This is a 6x17 format camera, but with appropriate masks, one can get 6x12 or 6x14 sized pictures. The following large format lenses are acceptable with cognate adapters: 75 mm, 90 mm, 150 mm, 180 mm and 210 mm.

For more information visit the camera home page:

There are only a few companies left that make 6x17 cameras now-a-days. Both Fuji and Fotoman have stopped production recently. Hope that this camera will fulfill the needs of medium format panoramic photographers, who are not left with many options these days.

I thank Mr. Achim Hoos for allowing me to use the picture and for his encouraging words.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Noblex in action

Look how the Medium format Noblex camera rotates, gaining up speed and then exposes the film. Unlike most other rotational panoramic cameras it can make multiple exposures.

Compare the movements of Noblex with that of Panon (Widelux) medium format swing lens panoramic camera.

Updating my blog

I was a bit busy for the last 2-3 months or so, with my 'professional' activities, unfortunately which is not panoramic photography. As a result I couldn't write as frequently as I was doing earlier. I hope to resume my regular speed and make at least one post per week.

I would much appreciate if you can kindly provide any information regarding film panoramic photography or any novel photographic gadget which you found to be interesting. I'll post about it with due acknowledgment.

The Siciliano and Psyclops cameras by Thomas Roma

PSYCLOPS CAMERA from Kai McBride on Vimeo.

Sicliliano was a 6x9 format camera handmade by Thomas Roma. To quote again from wiki "In the 1970s, Roma started manufacturing and selling cameras under the name "Siciliano Camera Works". He produced the medium format "Siciliano". This video shows the related "Psyclops" camera. The format being 6X? :). The Psyclops was designed by Thomas Roma, inspired by Kai McBride, and built by Mr. Roma, Mr. McBride, and Dennis Santella. Read a story of the Siciliano from Joe Reifer's page.

For latest information, visit:

The Pannaroma camera by Thomas Roma

The "P-anna-roma" camera was made by Thomas Roma. He's "an American photographer who has worked almost exclusively since 1974 exploring the neighborhoods and institutions of his native Brooklyn, photographing scenes from churches, subways and everyday life, using a homemade camera"(from wikipedia).

Professor Roma built this camera from the gutted body of a Nikon F. The picture of which appears in Joseph Meehan's book. This I beleive one of the earliest examples of converted 35mm panoramic cameras.

Quoting again from wiki "He milled an adapter out of aircraft aluminum to go between the Nikon body and a Mamiya 50mm Sekor lens. He also made a bright-line optical viewfinder for the camera. The camera was called a “Pannaroma 1X3″, making a play on words between “panorama” and Roma’s wife’s name “Anna,” to create the word "P-anna-roma"." :)

Though I can't provide a picture of this camera at this moment, some example photos are taken by Danis Santella using this camera can be found here.

You can also read a 1978 newspaper article which tells about the inventor and his invention.

Some more information on Thomas Roma can be found from the Wiki entry , an interview of him from Columbia university website (where he's a full professor) and from his website .

I'm indebted to Mr. Olaf Matthes for all these informations. Do have a look at his great handmade panoramic cameras.

Mr. Roma made other camera's too including a 6x9. I'll write about it in my next post.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Old but interesting article

I found this article on panoramic photography while looking for some works of David Avison, a pioneer panoramic photographer of our times. The article is dated, but nevertheless worth reading. First appeared in the Camera Arts Magazine , you can find it here.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Pana-Vista: Another 3D Panorama viewer

Pana-Vista is a 3D-panorama viewer made my Henry Chung . Apart from 25mm x 54mm slides this can be used to view "Realist Size" mounted" 3-D Slides. To have more information on this slide viewer and price/availability follow this link. I thank Mr. Henry Chung for kindly allowing me to use these pictures.

The Fotoblur Magazine

The photoblur magazine is a high quality photography magazine available as online and printed version as well. The online version is free to download. You can access the magazine at or have a quick preview at the Top favorites gallery .