Faux Pinholes



c2011 Helen Reynolds
Is a fake pinhole as worthy as a real pinhole photo? This photo has been taken with some of the most desirable, exquisite technology available in the 22nd century and then passed through the digital filters of the ToyCamera app. This app randomly selects whether your photo will end up with over-saturation, burnt out highlights, vignetting, plastic lens distortion and so on.
I love taking pinhole photographs - the pinhole camera has been an important teacher for me. You can never know how a pinhole photo will come out, except that there will definitely be some 'distortion' and the image is impossible to frame with any control.
But the absence of control can lead to enlightenment: how limited and lacklustre your imagination is compared to the pseudo-random beautiful accidents that come out of your pinhole camera. And your vision is opened.
So while I intellectually worry about the layers of sophistication used to create a facsimile of ineptitude, I find the randomising effect of the app has a similiar affect to an actual pinhole.
I can stare at these images and find new things I did not see when I first looked at the object.
And they connect me to the past - in photos of my vegetable garden I can clearly see all the way back to vegetables grown when I was two years old.


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