Monday, July 8, 2013

Inspired by a Toy Camera

If you have been reading my posts, you already know that I bought a Diana F+ toy camera.  I've been mostly shooting with the instant photograph back so I've been using Fujifilm instax film.  On a recent trip to visit family in Mexico for a birthday celebration I was using the Diana F+ to play with.  I also took an old Nikon flash (SB-26) and an Olympus E-M5.  I was having so much fun with the Diana F+ but then it soon got dark.  The party was in full swing and I ran to my bag and pulled my flash. When I bought the camera I decided not to get the flash attachment so the question was, how to use the flash.  I decided that shooting in bulb mode, which is one of the modes on the Diana F+, and triggering the flash manually with my other hand would probably work.  It took me one photo to get the flash power where I wanted it. And I shot the rest of the instax pack that  way and got great results.  Soon I was out of film, so I pulled my Olympus E-M5, but I was having a lot of fun with the Diana F+ that I decided to mimic as much as possible the feel of the toy camera. I set the Olympus EM-5 to bulb mode with an aperture of F/11 and ISO 800 because I get really good "grain-like" noise at that ISO from that camera.  Surprisingly enough, those settings gave me the exact same exposure as the Diana F+ with the instax film. I prefocused to about 4 feet, but at F/11 on a MFT camera is enough to have much of everything in focus.  I kept shooting, and I was having a blast.  Before using the flash on the Diana F+ I tried some double exposure shots, so I was like "let's try some in-camera double exposure."  I came up to F/8 and started shooting; exposing two subjects with my flash.  As you can see on the photo below, it's a very cool technique, and not that hard to do.  I didn't even have a flash sync cord, it was all manual.  This could easily be incorporated into street photography when the light goes dim for the day.  And I plan on carrying that same flash with me on my street photography outings from now on. 

"Double Exposure" by Jesse Acosta | Olympus E-M5 | Mexico | 2013


  1. Love all your videos, especially the ones on street photography. Keep them coming.
    Sam Hardy

    1. Thanks Sam. Keep watching, I have more videos on the way.