Wait for 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! This is a fantastic STEM project for future engineers, tinkerers, and the curious, who can learn the science behind how a camera works.
A great way to learn really about photography is by using a fully analog camera (which means film, not digital).
We couldn’t help it. We ordered one.
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 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! It’s a little finicky and takes patience since assembling is not quick. It’s also a great tool for learning to read instructions and figuring out how to apply them practically.
Yes, film still exists. Film cameras really teach you how to take photos – you can’t fix your mistakes with a delete button. You have to think before taking a picture, which requires 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 the 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, 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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