A View Camera Photo Booth Created with a DSLR and Sawed Off iMac


For their Chicago-based rent-a-photobooth business Fotio, event planners Nick Harvey and Theresa McMullen created a custom camera rig that looks like a vintage view camera. The ingredients — besides the wooden shell and bellows — included a DSLR and an iMac.

Harvey took the 20-inch iMac and sawed off the stand to make it a simple computer-equipped display:

Fotio-iMac-Photo-Booth copy

He then paired the display with a Canon T4i, and stuffed the two devices into a view camera shell created using solid oak, brass, and leather.


The resulting photo booth is extremely easy to use. Guests simply step in front of the camera and push a red wired shutter release button to trigger a shot.




The booth (and the software it runs) does the rest of the grunt work. Photographs are processed and then displayed on the camera’s giant 20-inch “LCD screen.”


Harvey and McMullen currently rent the camera to customers for $600 for 6 hours of supervised fun. As each guest snaps a photograph, he or she is given a red ticket with a number used to view the photo through an online gallery.


Here are some sample photographs captured using the photo booth:





Image credits: Photographs by Nick Harvey/Theresa McMullen/Fotio and used with permission

  • Dave Reynolds

    Really cool. The imac amputation seems to be a shame though.

  • brob

    ok… what kind of lighting are they pairing this with? cause those examples don’t really look that good

  • John Milleker

    Agreed, could easily be done with a lower end LCD and a netbook or smaller form factor EEE pc.

  • John Milleker

    I’m guessing the sphere above the camera is a flash by the harsh on-camera looking lighting (which is most likely the T4i on-camera flash). It wouldn’t be hard to install an AC powered strobe in a strip softbox a few feet above the box.

  • miah8000

    Love this concept, very fun and creative with a touch of nostalgia

  • Borja Batalla

    Esto lo que es , es una gilipollez y una autentica falta de respeto a la fotografia.

  • Sean Lucky

    Also unnecessary… Apple monitors/iMacs are being used in the film industry all the time, and they have adapters to allow them to mount to all sorts of grip equipment.

  • Rontae Hardy

    Obviously he didn’t want the lcd stand, nor did he need the imac for any other purpose. Why spend unnecessary dollars when you can simply cut off the lcd stand for free. Its just a computer.

  • Rontae Hardy

    Cool idea and a great use for older imacs that cost nothing.

  • Remi Boucher

    What an idiot! The stand can be easily removed (to install a VESA mount for example). Do people google anymore before doing something stupid?

  • Bob Agens

    Couldn’t he google “remove imac stand”? It’s so easy to do!

  • Nate Matos

    Good? Not really.

    What people expect out of photobooth pictures? Absolutely.

  • Tom Bryan

    I mean, it’s not really a view camera but rather a t4i lol. Good idea though.

  • Andres Trujillo

    Por que?

  • Flicker Stage

    Great concept! Lighting could be improved, but love the simple elegance!

  • Nate Lowman

    The VESA mount is only for for the 27″ and older 24″ imacs. I bet they used the 21.5″ or 20″, in which you have take the entire mac apart to remove the stand. Google it.

  • Joey Duncan

    ya Google it!…… uhhhhh lol

  • Joey Duncan

    I would say though, honestly I would think that he wouldn’t have gone through the trouble of hacking off the base if he really didn’t think he needed to. Seems like a lot of work for such an expensive product.

  • Alan B. Dodson

    Cute, but not a photo booth, just a camera on a stick variation. real photo booths are enclosed. Actually kind of lame.

  • Bua

    Clever idea and a great money maker.

  • Andres Trujillo

    Borja, creo que estas exagerando tu reaccion, personalmente, a mi no me gusta la idea. Pero decir que es “una falta de respeto a la fotografia” es una de las idioteces mas grandes que e escuchado en mi vida.

  • Ronald Keith

    Remi, it seems you’ve missed the point. The point is what they created provides loads of fun at the time, plus lets them keep a memento of the event. I happened to attend an event in which it was the hit of the party. Lets look for the positives in life, rather than encourage negativity.

  • allie

    I disagree, actually. They look like snapshots with on camera flash. When people think what photobooth lighting looks like, they often think of that very soft evenly lit portraits (think of the old black and white photobooth photos).

    A large diffused strobe above the lens would give the right effect.

  • Remi Boucher

    You’re right. Didn’t notice they used the 20″. I’d still take apart the mac instead of using a saw.

  • PhotoShark

    way too cover up your premature criticism…

  • photoJames

    Interesting concept, love the possibilities. But like you said Alan, “Not a Photo Booth”. Not even a kiosk. A little like Polite in Public, and there was someone on PBT that built a booth that was more like an old movie projector.