Wait a second. You can build your own, fully functional 35 mm SLR camera…from scratch?!? Our inner geek was super excited to discover this. It actually WORKS!
We just couldn’t help it. We ordered one.
It’s a perfect STEM project for future engineers, tinkerers, the curious, or to help a beginner photographer understand how a camera works.
The only true way to learn about photography is by using a fully analogue camera (which mean film, not digital).
Pieces and Features Included
- Multiple exposure function
- Bulb setting
- Detachable 50mm f/10 lens
- All needed items and supplies are in the box (no glue is needed)
Yes, it’s plastic, and not exactly perfect, but still pretty cool.
It’s a little more complicated than a basic Meccano set and may be better suited for early teens, but younger kids may still want to try! It’s a little finnicky and takes patience since it’s not quick to assemble. It’s also a great tool for learning to read instructions and figuring out out how to apply them practically.
Yes, film still exists. Film is a classic way to learn how to take photos. You have to really think before you take a picture, which requires some forethought, patience and skill. But it also makes each picture extra special.
Kodak ISO 400 can be used indoors or on cloudy days. With fingers tingling loading actual film, there is something special about it – the smell of the film and sound of loading, and then the patience and excitement waiting for the film roll to be developed. Admittedly, we don’t have high hopes for the photos…this is a DIY kit after all…but it was great fun just putting it together.
Should you decide to develop the film, a few places still develop rolls such as Henry’s in Canada, and it seems Walmart does as well but they don’t return your negatives. Just do a little googling. The lead time is a little longer for 35mm film development.
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