LIFE

Photographer Buys Dingy Camper For $200 And Transforms It Into A Gigantic Portable Camera

by Caralynn Lippo
Caralynn is a writer, native New Yorker, TV enthusiast, and dog mom to Hobbes.

Photography is such an incredible and versatile art form.

According to the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas at Austin, the first known surviving photograph made by a camera was taken by Joseph Nicéphore Niépce in 1826 or 1827.

It depicted the view from an upstairs window at his estate in the Burgundy region of France.

The art form has come a long way since then. Nowadays, cameras are built into just about every smartphone, meaning the power to capture and memorialize an image is literally in the palm of virtually every person’s hand. Digital cameras allow professional photographers to take award-winning pictures anywhere and everywhere.

But one photographer came up with the ingenious and creative idea to return to an “old school” form of photography — and the results are astounding.

Scroll through to see Brendan’s amazing DIY “Caravan Camera” project!

Thumbnail Photo: Brendan Barry

[H/T: Bored Panda]

Brendan Barry is a professional photographer based in England.

In an article for Bored Panda, Brendan explained the genesis of his amazing “Caravan Camera” project.

A year ago, Brendan built a 16 by 20 inch ultra-large-format, old-school camera.

He made it out of plywood, a pane of glass, and some blackout material. He used a 20-inch military aerial lens that he had borrowed off a friend.

Later, he even built a shed camera, an even larger device, that worked better than his previous version, but wasn’t mobile.

Shortly after, Brendan had the idea for the Caravan Camera.

He purchased an old, dingy RV off eBay for 150 GBP (approximately $200).

Then, he completely tore it apart to create his vision.

Brendan removed everything from the inside of the cheap vehicle, then blacked it out.

He built himself a mount for the lens and set up space for darkroom trays inside, making the RV an all-in-one camera and darkroom to both take and develop photographs.

The inventive photographer then had a friend named Pat Cullum create a custom paint job for the outside of the caravan.

The final result is an RV that’s hardly recognizable as such — it looks exactly like a giant camera on wheels!

But would it take photos?

Brendan arranged with the director of a local pop-up art space called The Boatshed to park it outside for a week.

During that week, he took portraits of passersby to see if it would really work.

Over 300 people experienced the Caravan Camera during this time.

Brendan had people step inside to see exactly how the Caravan Camera works, then pose outside to take a portrait of their own.

After posing, Brendan would invite his subjects back inside to see the development process as he brought their images to life.

The resulting images are incredible, one-of-a-kind prints — the likes of which simply can’t be matched with your standard digital or smartphone camera.

Brendan also uses his experience with the Caravan Camera as a tool for teaching photography to students — and it’s certainly a one-of-a-kind method!

Isn’t Brendan’s work amazing?

Don’t forget to SHARE this photography project on Facebook!