As I twittered (tweeted, twooted, twinkled, twunctated or twhat-have-you) yesterday, I’ve finally finished scanning all the 120 rolls from my December trip to O’ahu; now I face the Herculean task […]
Diamond Head, the iconic Hawaiian volcano, is probably one of the most photographed mountains in the world and, as a good tourist on O’ahu, I tried my best to do […]
How to flip a Brownie Hawkeye Flash lens
I’ve noticed a lot of search traffic hitting my site specifically looking for information on how to flip the lens of a Kodak Brownie Hawkeye Flash (BHF). While there are probably multitudes of other resources on the interwebs, I figure I’ll just throw my two-cents out there.
For those who don’t know, the BHF is a black bakelite beauty with a top-down viewfinder, single element meniscus lens, shutter speed somewhere around 1/30 to 1/60 & a bulb setting, while it lacks a tripod mount, it has a nifty handle. In it’s heyday, the BHF was a very popular camera. Your grandparents most likely had one. Nowadays, you can find them cheaply at thrift stores, flea markets, garage sales, and eBay, or for a higher premium decorating shelves in antique stores & hipster boutiques.
I, personally, got mine for free on Craigslist thanks to a kind-hearted Samaritan who was donating several cameras to anyone who could justify receiving one. I simply wrote “I’ll use it.” It arrived in the mail a couple days later and I’ve been enthralled with it ever since.
Anywho, an unmodified BHF takes a relatively normal photograph, but something magical happens when you flip the lens. It’s like the soft focus of a vintage Diana multiplied to the Nth degree. The lens’ focal point shifts from infinity to about 3 feet in the center, while the edges just melt away into blurry goodness. The effect can be quite surreal.
Flipping the lens of a BHF is actually a simple procedure with a very low-risk of permanently #@$%-ing anything up and is easily reversible. That said, I assume no responsibility with these directions if you somehow manage to accidentally bork your favorite family heirloom.
Ready? Let’s get flipping.
Not Dead, Just Thinking.
The updating here at expiredfilm.com has been a little lax of late, as I have been thinking of doing some sort of a major overhaul of the site design. I want to […]
BHF – Bridge to the Adirondacks
Yet another flipped lens Brownie Hawkeye Flash, Rollei Retro 400 developed in Diafine. Tinted in PS.
BHF – More from the Adirondacks
NY 86, near Lake Placid, NY. Ausable River. High Falls Gorge. All taken with a flipped lens Brownie Hawkeye Flash, Rollei Retro 400 developed in Diafine.
BHF – Ausable River
The western branch of the Ausable River, near Lake Placid, NY. Flipped lens Brownie Hawkeye Flash, Rollei Retro 400 developed in Diafine.
BHF – Strawberry Picking
Bucket of strawberries @ Hafner’s Farm, Baldwinsville, NY. Kodak Brownie Haweye Flash with a flipped lens; Ilford HP5 Plus developed in Diafine.