Saturday, August 22, 2009

Through the Viewfinder (TTV) Photography

I wrote a post the other day about "fake TTV". Well after doing a little more research on the subject, I figured out it would be easier to do real TTV photography (especially since I don't have photoshop and would have to sweet talk someone to do the photoshopping for me).

This post from gives a great explanation on exactly what TTV photography is:

You’re wandering around your favorite thrift store/ flea market/ crazy cat-lady neighbor’s attic and you find a great vintage camera.

You get all excited until you open the back and discover it only takes some bizarre outdated film that hasn’t been around since President Taft was voted People Magazine’s “Sexiest Man Alive.” So you put it back, sigh, and daydream about that naughty naughty Taft.

But hark, dear reader: you can take digital pictures using that incredibly cool old camera. Combine your digital camera with your kitschy cam, and you’ll end up with some serious vintage-style awesome.


through the viewfinderYou’ll need two cameras for this trick: one (preferably digital) to take the picture and another to aim through. Most people seem to favor cameras with waist-level viewfinders because they’re large and easy to see.

Frame your shot using the older camera, then aim your digital camera at the viewfinder and take the picture. Afterwards, crop the photo to take out everything but the viewfinder image.

Well hello there mind-readers over at I have a handful of vintage cameras that I have collected over the past year - the Kodak Brownie Holiday (cir.1953), the Kodak Brownie Flash Six-20 (cir. 1946), the Kodak Brownie Starlet (cir. 1956), and the Keystone Capri K-30 8mm movie camera (cir. 1950).

I have always wanted to take photographs with them, but the film & development would be too expensive for it to become a hobby. Since none of these cameras had a waist-level viewfinder, they would have to continue to collect dust on my mantle. I made a trip to the Rink Gallery and crossed my fingers that I would find a camera. It was my lucky day! I found a Kodak Brownie Hawkeye for $27.

I made a little "smokestack" out of file folders and painters tape in order to block out the light and reduce the glare on the lens.

Time to experiment!

It takes a little getting used to... the images are reversed in the old camera. I don't have the steadiest hand, so a lot of the shots turned out blurry. Maybe it's time to invest in a tripod?


Beth said...

Awesome! I like how all those cameras have the word brownie in them!

Anonymous said...

These photos look like they belong in a dream sequence of a movie. I haven't forgotten about lunch...trying to manage my redic schedule. I'll call you this week!