Some Assembly Required: Michael Candy

This series focuses on those who take the making of pictures a step or two further, creating their own photographic tools.


Michael Candy, Australia

Giving old cameras a new life, Michael Candy crafted “Frank,” a one-of-a-kind digital camera comprised of several generations of camera components, some 40 years apart. The end product is homemade single functional three-megapixel digital camera. 

The initial idea for Frank was born from procrastination during Candy’s first year of university where he majored in fine arts and industrial design. Before beginning his photography assignment, Candy resolved to construct his camera, buying him some additional time on the assignment. The camera’s construction took one week to complete and is constructed from a variety of photographic parts, including the lens from an old VHS video camera and the image sensor from an old Cannon DSLR.

Stylishly encased in wood, Frank has a retro look to it. The resulting images have a cinematic quality, most noticeably from the grainy quality of the imagery and the horizontal lines reminiscent of a home movie placed on pause. The success of Candy’s creation inspired The Blind Camera Project, an initiative in which Candy worked with several local photographers to design and build one-of-a-kind cameras best suited to their vision. Candy’s work has since shifted direction and the Blind Camera Project is on hiatus, though he hopes to revive it at some future time.

Photo made with Frank

View more of Candy’s work on his website.

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