View Full Version : Thomas Hudson Reeves

05-25-2005, 09:22 AM
Hi my name is Mike. I've been checking out this site for a while and well I'm new to photography, maybe seven months and I am really new to the darkroom and I think it's love for real this time so I went back to Mr. Reeves (http://www.papercams.com/) site, which I had seen months ago but was too in awe of and inexperienced about to utilize, to re-consider trying to build one of his all photopaper cameras. I love the joy in his work, the thrill-seeker in it. I love how it strips away everything...

...anyways, has anyone tried it themselves? It seems pretty simple if you use the Mark II but I only count nine cuts, he says there's three more. Also without a brass plate cardboard should work, right? I plan to try it today, picking up some new paper (my waste level is pretty high even for a beginner) and I was hoping for some last minute advice.

Thanks and if I haven't mentioned it yet, this site is a great resource. Thanks for being here.


05-25-2005, 09:36 AM
I looked at this website about a year ago, and made a mental note to try the technique someday. I have yet to act on this idea. It looks like fun to me. I would try to make a good pinhole, though. I use Coke can aluminum and hobby drills to make my pinholes, and I have had good luck. I don't have any color paper around, but I think that this would be fun with black and white as well. Maybe I will even try to make a camera out of 8X10 sheet film. But how to make the outside opaque? Black spray paint in the dark? Would the anti-halation coating prevent light penetration?

05-25-2005, 01:31 PM
Mr. Hudson uses black masking tape. I figure on using his technique as closely as possible. I hadn't thought of can metal, like the bottoms? I had figured like ceral cardboard. I wanted something that I could duplicate easy for instruction sake.

Tom Persinger
05-25-2005, 03:11 PM
if you attempt this, i urrge you to document your tests with a dig cam for all of us to appreciate...
good luck!

05-25-2005, 05:13 PM
Well, for whatever it's worth, RC printing paper is translucent enough you can put it in an enlarger and make a print, almost as if it were film (there's a thread on f295 somewhere about that). I'm not aware of an antihalation coating as such in photo paper -- the emulsion looks almost white, not the brownish or grayish color I'm used to see on 35 mm film leaders or sacrified film sheets. So, I'm in the dark as to how the papercams don't just fog solid black through the paper before you can even expose.

However, it clearly works for Reeves -- his sheltering of the cams until the moment of exposure (and presumably again afterward) and covering them in black masking tape in the darkroom are close to adequate.

I wonder if one might make such a camera from Ilfochrome paper, which as I recall is on an opaque black backing...

05-25-2005, 06:18 PM
But how to make the outside opaque? Black spray paint in the dark? Would the anti-halation coating prevent light penetration?
Suggestion: take a sheet (paper weight, not carton) of paper, expose it in bright light and develop it. It will be nice deep black. Then "sandwich" it (with glue, double sticking tape?) against a virgin paper (this one as inside negative) That should be enough. I just had a look on this link, but except the shots where you can more or less imagine how the Mark 1 and the Mark 2 are cut and folded I found no instructions. Am I blind or are there none ::)

Tom Miller
05-26-2005, 01:42 PM
Mr. Reeve doesn't divulge his secrets.

A possibility - and this is coming off the top of my head - would be to wrap the camera in the opaque plastic that photo paper comes in.

Roger Cline
05-28-2005, 02:27 PM
why couldn't one build a box that's the same size as the folded paper?

05-28-2005, 05:25 PM
That defeats the purpose. Any container for the paper is no different than putting paper or film into a beer can or an Altoid tin. The appeal of this idea is that the paper is the camera, and after the image is recorded, it ceases to be a camera and becomes the final product. I like Tom's idea - the covering could be similar to the bag bellows you see for view cameras, although this also dilutes the purity of the light-sensitive-material-as-camera design.