Pinhole Camera in Your Pocket

Last Updated on December 16, 2020 by Susheel Chandradhas

Photograph of two trees on a ridge taken with a pin hole camera

Most serious or semi-serious photographers have wanted to use a pinhole camera, but thought that it would be too complicated to make one themselves, or possibly just didn’t know how.

Now, if you’re interested, you could make one yourself, out of a matchbox, a tin can, curled binder plastic and a whole lot of tape.

Guided DIY Pinhole Camera Build: brings you a full-fledged tutorial in 9 seemingly simple steps:

  1. You’ll need
  2. The Box
  3. The Pinhole
  4. Shutter
  5. Clicker
  6. Loading
  7. Light-Proofing
  8. Winder
  9. Using

That’s it, and you’re on your way to taking memorable photographs such as these:

Will this really work?

Yes, I think that following this simple build will enable you to make a functional pinhole camera with just a matchbox, film, and some tape.


Photography with pinhole cameras typically has more to do with exploring the artform, and understanding the process of chemical photography. It’s a novel idea for this time of digital and cellphone photography, and I think it’s important that we acknowledge it as such. The camera has little functional use, except that it may help your DIY skills, and will help you gain an appreciation for the process of photography.

Will I Make One?

I certainly hope so. I will keep readers of this site informed if I ever do get around to making this form of pinhole camera. Stay tuned. 🙂

Photos by Matt Callow and Demetri on Flickr.

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