Through the Viewfinder (TtV) photography is a photographic or videographic technique in which a photograph or video or motion picture film is shot with one camera through the viewfinder of a second camera. The viewfinder thus acts as a kind of lens filter.The most popular method involves using a digital camera as the image taking camera and an intact twin-lens reflex camera (TLR) or pseudo-TLR as the "viewfinder" camera. TLRs typically have square waist-level viewfinders, with the viewfinder plane at 90 degrees to the image plane. The image in a TLR viewfinder is laterally reversed, i.e. it is a mirror image. Most photographers use a cardboard tube or other apparatus connecting the two cameras in order to eliminate stray light and prevent reflections from appearing on the viewfinder glass or on the lens of the imaging camera.
Depending on the model of TLR, the resulting image may have an old-fashioned feel to it, often with vignetting, blurred edges, distortion and dust. TLR models popular among TtV photographers have a brilliant type ('bubble glass') viewfinder. They include the Ansco Anscoflex, Argus 75, Kodak Duaflex and Kodak Brownie.
While waist-level viewfinders have been common in box cameras since the beginning of the 20th century, large viewfinders of the sort that are suitable for TtV photography became popular in the late 1920s and 1930s with medium format TLR and pseudo TLR cameras such as the Rolleiflex and the Voigtländer Brillant. Similar large, clear square viewfinders were popular in TLRs and pseudo TLRs until the mid-1960s. These medium format cameras became less popular with the advent of 35mm SLRs and compact cameras in the 1960s and 1970s.
The idea of photographing an image through the viewfinder of such a camera is relatively new, and TtV photography and filmography has come into use with the advent of digital cameras and EyeTap devices. Before the advent of digital photography it was necessary to use extension tubes to photograph a close-up object such as a viewfinder, and it was difficult to judge focusing precisely. Both compact digital cameras and digital SLRs are able to focus on close objects without the need for extension tubes, and their autofocus function and digital viewing screen make it easy to focus and judge framing and exposure. Moreover, the EyeTap device captures exactly what the eye sees,and therefore can capture video recordings of anything that the human eye can look into. It is thus much better suited to this type of photography/videography than most previously known cameras.
U.S. Patent 6614408 (S. Mann, 1999), entitled "Eye-tap for electronic newsgathering, documentary video, photojournalism, and personal safety", describes this method of using 2 cameras, the first of which is a wearable camera, and the second camera is handheld, so as to record the experience of one camera looking through a second camera:
This embodiment..., when manufactured in a wearable form (e.g. covertly concealed in eyeglasses) may be used for meta documentary, such as when shooting a documentary about shooting a documentary. In metadocumentary, the wearer of the glasses carries an ordinary camcorder and records the experience of looking through the viewfinder of the camcorder. In this way the wearer, in effect... a viewfinder for the viewfinder of the camcorder. Thus the wearer can capture a true and accurate depiction of what it is like to walk around with a camcorder, so that those viewing the documentary are, in effect, taken inside the eyecup of the camcorder viewfinder so they can vicariously experience the making of a documentary. The camcorder need not actually record, but may in fact be nothing more than a prop.
In addition, the popularity of digital photography and of on-line auction sites has led to a big increase in the number lot of older medium format TLRs and pseudo TLRs on the second hand market. Many people find it more convenient to use these cameras for TtV photography than to use them with film.
Videos shot using TtV are known as "Meta Documentaries", an example of which was ShootingBack, by S. Mann, in which a covert EyeTap wearable camera was used to shoot through the viewfinder of various standard hand-held video and motion picture film cameras.In some situations both of the two cameras record, and the resulting "Meta Documentary" is edited down from both camera feeds (the camera being looked into, as well as the camera that's looking into its viewfinder). In other cases, the second camera is just a "dummy" camera that does not actually record, and its purpose is only to be looked through.
The following equipment is required:
The contraption may be a simple cardboard tube, or an open ended box that fits around the bottom camera.
Post-processing can be done with image editing software. This normally involves cropping the image to a square and straightening it. The cropping is necessary because in most cases the (normally square) viewfinder image covers only about 25- 50% of the area of the (normally rectangular) digital picture.
Additionally some photographers prefer to 'flip' the TtV image so that it is no longer a mirror image, especially if the image contains lettering.
Color and saturation adjustments depend on the taste of the photographer, some photographers prefer to keep such adjustments to a minimum while others prefer more radical adjustments, such as the "Urban Acid" action for the image editing programs Adobe Photoshop or GIMP.
A single-lens reflex camera (SLR) is a camera that typically uses a mirror and prism system that permits the photographer to view through the lens and see exactly what will be captured. With twin lens reflex and rangefinder cameras, the viewed image could be significantly different from the final image. When the shutter button is pressed on most SLRs, the mirror flips out of the light path, allowing light to pass through to the light receptor and the image to be captured.
A camera is an optical instrument that can capture an image. Most cameras can capture 2D images, with some more advanced models being able to capture 3D images. At a basic level, most cameras consist of sealed boxes, with a small hole that allows light to pass through in order to capture an image on a light-sensitive surface. Cameras have various mechanisms to control how the light falls onto the light-sensitive surface. Lenses focus the light entering the camera, and the aperture can be narrowed or widened. A shutter mechanism determines the amount of time the photosensitive surface is exposed to the light.
A rangefinder camera is a camera fitted with a rangefinder, typically a split-image rangefinder: a range-finding focusing mechanism allowing the photographer to measure the subject distance and take photographs that are in sharp focus. Most varieties of rangefinder show two images of the same subject, one of which moves when a calibrated wheel is turned; when the two images coincide and fuse into one, the distance can be read off the wheel. Older, non-coupled rangefinder cameras display the focusing distance and require the photographer to transfer the value to the lens focus ring; cameras without built-in rangefinders could have an external rangefinder fitted into the accessory shoe. Earlier cameras of this type had separate viewfinder and rangefinder windows; later the rangefinder was incorporated into the viewfinder. More modern designs have rangefinders coupled to the focusing mechanism so that the lens is focused correctly when the rangefinder images fuse; compare with the focusing screen in non-autofocus SLRs.
A twin-lens reflex camera (TLR) is a type of camera with two objective lenses of the same focal length. One of the lenses is the photographic objective or "taking lens", while the other is used for the viewfinder system, which is usually viewed from above at waist level.
Medium format has traditionally referred to a film format in photography and the related cameras and equipment that use film. Nowadays, the term applies to film and digital cameras that record images on media larger than the 24 mm × 36 mm used in 35 mm photography, but smaller than 4 in × 5 in.
Minolta Co., Ltd. was a Japanese manufacturer of cameras, camera accessories, photocopiers, fax machines, and laser printers. Minolta Co., Ltd., which is also known simply as Minolta, was founded in Osaka, Japan, in 1928 as Nichi-Doku Shashinki Shōten. It made the first integrated autofocus 35 mm SLR camera system. In 1931, the company adopted its final name, an acronym for "Mechanism, Instruments, Optics, and Lenses by Tashima".
An electronic viewfinder (EVF) is a camera viewfinder where the image captured by the lens is displayed on a small screen which the photographer can look through when composing their shot. It differs from a live preview screen in being smaller and shaded from ambient light, and may also use less power. The sensor records the view through the lens, the view is processed, and finally projected on a miniature display which is viewable through the eyepiece.
Mamiya Digital Imaging Co., Ltd. is a Japanese company that manufactures high-end cameras and other related photographic and optical equipment. With headquarters in Tokyo, it has two manufacturing plants and a workforce of over 200 people. The company was founded in May 1940 by camera designer Seiichi Mamiya and financial backer Tsunejiro Sugawara.
In infrared photography, the film or image sensor used is sensitive to infrared light. The part of the spectrum used is referred to as near-infrared to distinguish it from far-infrared, which is the domain of thermal imaging. Wavelengths used for photography range from about 700 nm to about 900 nm. Film is usually sensitive to visible light too, so an infrared-passing filter is used; this lets infrared (IR) light pass through to the camera, but blocks all or most of the visible light spectrum.
A point-and-shoot camera, also known as a compact camera and sometimes abbreviated to P&S, is a still camera designed primarily for simple operation. Most use focus free lenses or autofocus for focusing, automatic systems for setting the exposure options, and have flash units built in. They are popular for vernacular photography by people who do not consider themselves photographers but want easy-to-use cameras for snapshots of vacations, parties, reunions and other events.
In photography, a viewfinder is what the photographer looks through to compose, and, in many cases, to focus the picture. Most viewfinders are separate, and suffer parallax, while the single-lens reflex camera lets the viewfinder use the main optical system. Viewfinders are used in many cameras of different types: still and movie, film, analog and digital. A zoom camera usually zooms its finder in sync with its lens, one exception being rangefinder cameras.
A digital single-lens reflex camera is a digital camera that combines the optics and the mechanisms of a single-lens reflex camera with a digital imaging sensor.
Rolleiflex is the name of a long-running and diverse line of high-end cameras originally made by the German company Franke & Heidecke, and later Rollei-Werke.
The history of the single-lens reflex camera (SLR) begins with the use of a reflex mirror in a camera obscura described in 1676, but it took a long time for the design to succeed for photographic cameras. The first patent was granted in 1861, and the first cameras were produced in 1884, but while elegantly simple in concept, they were very complex in practice. One by one these complexities were overcome as optical and mechanical technology advanced, and in the 1960s the SLR camera became the preferred design for many high-end camera formats.
Digital photography uses cameras containing arrays of electronic photodetectors interfaced to an analog-to-digital converter (ADC) to produce images focused by a lens, as opposed to an exposure on photographic film. The digitized image is stored as a computer file ready for further digital processing, viewing, electronic publishing, or digital printing.
The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to photography:
Live preview is a feature that allows a digital camera's display screen to be used as a viewfinder. This provides a means of previewing framing and other exposure before taking the photograph. In most such cameras, the preview is generated by means of continuously and directly projecting the image formed by the lens onto the main image sensor. This in turn feeds the electronic screen with the live preview image. The electronic screen can be either a liquid crystal display (LCD) or an electronic viewfinder (EVF).
The waist-level finder (WLF), also called waist-level viewfinder (WLVF), is a type of viewfinder that can be used on twin lens and single lens reflex cameras. While it is typically found on older medium format cameras, some newer and/or 35 mm cameras have this type of finder.
The Mamiya RB67 is a professional medium format single-lens reflex system camera manufactured by Mamiya. There are three successive models: the RB67 Professional, RB67 Pro-S and RB67 Pro-SD. It is primarily designed for studio use, but can also be used in the field.