Light leaks and learning curves

As many of you know I’ve been shooting almost exclusively with my Vermeer anamorphic pinhole and enjoyed a productive two weeks in Hawaii for the holidays. I shot 21 rolls of Kodak Ektar and Portra 400 and 5 rolls in my ONDU 35mm pocket pinhole.

I hadn’t shot many C-41 rolls in the anamorph before my Hawaii trip and wasn’t sure what to expect so I sent two rolls to Panda Labs in Seattle and the rest to Citizen’s Photo. My first rolls were ready a few days ago and here is an image from that roll:

anamorphic_050-edit yuck

That red color shocked me so I sent an email to Cezary, the Vermeer camera maker, to ask his opinion. He believes there is a light leak at the top of the camera and recommended taping it up for my next roll of exposures. Cezary has been incredibly gracious and supportive, I highly recommend working with him if you’re in the market for a pinhole camera.

I’ve been looking at these scans every day trying to love these light leaks and ‘accidents’ but I’m too disappointed. I have so many rolls from this trip and I expect they’ll all have similar red casts which I’ll have to convert to black and white for now:


I’m sure we’ve all experienced similar frustrations. What ‘accidents’ have you had and how did you resolve the issue?

Follow-up: The lab manager just called me to double check the mailing address and said they’ll have it in the mail by tomorrow morning. When the film comes I’ll start scanning the results in and hope for the best! Thanks for stopping by and happy shooting.

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One thought on “Light leaks and learning curves

  1. How sad…
    I had kind of a similar experience with my Zero 2000 at first. It was very uneven in the top of the back plate, but I did not see that at first, and the images was too blurry. I was greatly disapointed. Then, I tried to cut very thin strips of black electric tape, and taped the uneven area. I also got a tip from someone how to do a pressure plate to put pressure on the film plane to make the images sharper. So I did one and taped that to the back of the camera.
    Now my little Zero works perfect, and I’m very happy with it!

    Happy shooting to you too Jana! :-)

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