Made in the early 1960s, Fisher Price’s Picture Story Camera was the first “camera” owned by many photo-enthusiasts. They’re built out of paper-covered wood and plastic, and contained a tiny disc with eight different “photographs” that could be seen by looking through the viewfinder — similar to the View-Master, except not in 3D. To change the photo, you simply hold down the shutter and turn the “flash”, a yellow block with pictures representing the four seasons.
The Necono Digital Camera is a funky cat-shaped digital camera out of Japan that might make it easier for you to take smiling baby photos. It’s a 3 megapixel camera that doesn’t have any LCD screen embedded for you to review your shots — you have to connect it to a “Monitor Ground” base that includes an LCD or transfer the images to your computer via USB. The cat has a shutter button on its butt, the camera and a self-timer LED in its eyes, and magnetic feet that allow you to stick it in random places.
Like many novelty cameras, the Necono doesn’t exactly come cheap… It’ll run you a whopping ¥15,750 ($192). At least you can be the only one among your friends to take pictures with a cat.
If you want your kids to grow up with the same love of photography you have, you can try performing some “inception” giving them photography-related toys from a young age. “Zoom” is a camera windup toy by Z Wind Ups that waddles around, looking at things with a magnifying glass.
With a big lens housing his clear camera eye, Zoom should be able to pick up the spots on Lanie the Ladybug’s back from several feet away. Unfortunately, Zoom is missing just that–the zoom button that the factory seems to have forgotten to install! No worries, though, because that magnifying glass works just fine [...]
You can buy one for $5 over on Z Wind Ups.
Zoom (via Chip Chick)
The Gizmon Half D is a digital toy camera by that mimics the look of the Olympus PEN F half frame 35mm camera. The 2 megapixel camera has a 1.5-inch LCD screen, ISO ranging from 100-400, VGA video mode, three aspect ratios (standard, half, and square), and 10 different color modes. Like the Chobi Cam One, the Half D has a number of lenses that can be used for different looks. You can buy one for $120 through the Gizmon store.
Gizmon Half D (via 43 Rumors)
Valentine’s Day is just around the corner (February 14th, to be exact), and if the special person in your life is a photography-lover, you might want to think about ditching the cards, flowers, and chocolates, and going with something a little more… lomo. Lomography has released two special edition Diana cameras for this special occasion. The “Love is in the Air” Diana Mini costs $119 and the “Take My Heart” Diana F+ costs $99.
Fall in Love with the Diana F+ and Diana Mini (via Photography Monthly)
Ordinary DSLR cameras too big and bulky for you? Check out the CHOBi CAM ONE, a DSLR-style toy camera the size of an eraser that actually has lenses you can swap in and out. It shoots 1600×1200 still photos and VGA video at 30 frames per second.
If you’re looking to get your kid hooked on photography from an early age, giving them this Voltron Star Shooter toy might be a good place to start. Made in 1985, it starts out as an innocent looking SLR camera but transforms into a beastly Voltron action figure. The best part of it is that it’s actually a working 110 camera, even though the big SLR lens on the front is fake (the real lens is above it). This brings new and awesome meaning to the term “toy camera”.
Image credit: Voltron Star Shooter by John Kratz
If you think the Japanese come up with the strangest product ideas, it’s because they do. The Fuvi Chocolate camera is designed for people who want to look like they’re shooting with a chocolate bar, with dark, vanilla, and strawberry as the possible flavors. Sadly, what’s gained in looks is lost in specs — the camera only boasts a 0.3 megapixel sensor and is limited to onboard memory (i.e. it doesn’t use a memory card). If you’re a chocolate lover and need this camera on your keychain now after seeing it, it’ll be available in Japan starting in January 2011 for ¥ 2,730 (~$33).
Chocolate Camera (via Crave)
Wow, who knew this little toy camera by Penchan would beat all the big camera corps in being the first to offer terapixel photos?… Now all you need is a
terapixel petabyte memory card.
Image credits: 5.5 Terapixel Penchan Camera by Jim O’Connell
Behold — A Leica M8 camera created using Lego bricks! Schfio Factory this awesome toy camera using a $50 pink Lego digital camera and carefully building bricks around it to turn into Leica look-alike. It shoots at 3 megapixels and holds up to 80 photographs on its internal memory. Sweet.