You’ve Got to See This Homemade Large Format Video Camera & the Time Machine-Like Footage Shot With It

Zev Hoover is an 18-year-old photographer based in Massachusetts with more ingenuity than money. So when he became fascinated by the quality inherent to large format still photography and wondered about the possibility of shooting stills and video with an 8X10 relic, he had only one option: Build it himself.

And when you watch the video below that Hoover shot with his cobbled-together large format video camera, you’ll be amazed at both his DIY skills and the amazing, time machine-like quality of the results.

Hoover acknowledges that his one-of-a-kind camera doesn’t really have an 8X10 sensor. He started with a vintage 8X10 camera fitted with a Ukrainian large format lens that projects an image onto a white plane inside the camera. This projected image is captured by a full-frame Sony A7S mirrorless camera and an Irix 15mm f/2.4 Firefly lens. The whole contraption is then mounted atop an inexpensive video slider.

Hoover focuses by moving the bellows, and he applies 12mm of shift because the Sony A7S is off-axis from the projecting lens on the large format camera. After adding a monitor he was good to go. You’ll also see him shoot hand-held.

The video below, captured with Hoover’s invention, is really cool and includes a discussion of how he put the project together. Check out his YouTube channel and blog for more details and future developments. And for more DIY follies, be sure to look at our earlier story about a homemade “multipoint pinhole camera" that creates images resembling 19-century pointillist paintings.