The Man Who Turns Things in to Cameras: From Pineapples to Caravans

I have seen some bizarre cameras in my time, and a caravan is strangely not number one, but watermelon and pineapples are most certainly up there.ILFORD Photo have made another great mini documentary as part of their ILFORD Inspires series, and this one is a little more on the technical side. Photographer, lecturer, and builder of the craziest cameras, Brendan Barry, shows us around his creations and they warrant the title of "unique" where few others can genuinely claim it.

Barry's large format — and that's almost to underplay that term — camera which he's most well know for, is a converted caravan. Hitched to his car, this camaravan is set up in beauty spots and takes portraits of visitors and locals. It is not inconspicuously decorated either, making it more than clear what the rolling ex-house might truly be.

What is just as interesting is Barry's application of the principles of making a camera. With the lens and body established, he seems to look for objects which he can wedge between them to create unusual picture making machines. In this video alone he shows multiple fruit, Lego, and a wooden log. While I might not be fully sure of his motivations for partially organic cameras, the caravan large format I can get behind. Not least because the resulting images are that beautiful aesthetic than only large format cameras can create, with its unusual depth of field and feel.

What's the strangest camera you own?

Rob Baggs's picture

Robert K Baggs is a professional portrait and commercial photographer, educator, and consultant from England. Robert has a First-Class degree in Philosophy and a Master's by Research. In 2015 Robert's work on plagiarism in photography was published as part of several universities' photography degree syllabuses.

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As long as no extra light creeps in the area between the lens and the film/sensor, can't anything be made into a camera?

Unless you freeze it, dogshit might be a challenge...

I would love to see this happen and even better yet have the resulting photographs look better than expensive new gear. Just to hold above pixel peeping gear junkies.

Especially if you mold it into the shape of their favorite camera...

Absolutely. A camera is essentially a container of light with a method of focusing the light (the lens) and a method of capturing the light (the sensor/film).