Yoshizen's Blog

Handmade Flash System (2) — Light Bender

Flash System-Kodak(1)A09A9662

As a matter of fact, this is my first Digital Camera. It was a broken Kodak DC215 Digital Zoom camera

which was given by my friend as its battery chamber has been smashed.

So, he gave it for me to play with. Lens was x2 zoom (29~58mm equiv) and Image sensor was 1.5 MP.

( In today’s standard, it is a toy camera level though, 10 years ago, it was rather expensive good

camera 😉 )      Since the camera has been dropped and a corner of it has been smashed, I was not

sure whether it was repairable even if I get spare parts from Kodak. Still, with internal check, the

suspension mechanism of Zoom and Focus was not broken, I tested it with external power supply

—– it was functioning !    So that, not just repair the battery chamber, instead, I made an

additional battery housing attached to the bottom of the camera to use it with

5 rechargeable batteries. (Originally, 1.5V x 4 = 6V —-> 1.2V x 5).

Flash System-Kodak(2)351-001

Flash System-Kodak(3)352-001

Camera has its built-in Flash and it was working though, as I wrote before, I don’t like this kind of

direct flash lighting.    So that, I made a Light reflecting adapter to bend the light upward.

Then with a hand held white paper this light was reflected again toward the subject

therefore able to create more natural lighting with soft shadow. (photos below)

Flash System-Kodak(4A)356-001

(Left: By camera’s built-in Flash.   Center: with the reflecting adapter and a paper.  

Right: (the same)—- the difference is obvious. (This is what the Photography is)

To have a modification of existing flash system, there could be tens of different approaches,

each having pros and cons.    Without a heavy internal modification, put a cover on the existing

flash with light sensor to trigger another flash-light is a viable alternative.  —– In fact, you can

test a small reflector like this, Just use a small piece of  baking-foil, stacked 45 degree on front of

your camera’s flash.  —– If you got a camera, which is no longer in use, why not to try.

There isn’t much mystery in the camera design, if it was designed by a human-being,

why not possible to modified by others.   Just do it.   It’s a fun.   :-)

And it would be a start of ACTIVE creative photography to play with light  !    



3 Responses

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  1. jake said, on July 12, 2013 at 04:25

    It’s hard to find knowledgeable people on this topic, but you sound like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks

    • yoshizen said, on July 12, 2013 at 09:50

      Thank you Jake.
      I think, anybody dealing the same subject over 50 years while checking, even repairing
      the equipment, naturally acquire some knowledge.

  2. […] by that old Kodak camera, and the photos were clopped —- hence, pretty […]

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