After months of development, artist Kelli Anderson has created a new pop-up book titled “This Book is a Camera.” As you can probably guess from the title, the book contains a pop-up camera that can actually be used as a real camera.
“I wanted to make a working camera within an educational pop-up book—one that connects the dots between design and science/structure and function,” Anderson writes. This book does just that — it both explains and demonstrates how a camera uses light to produce a photograph.
Inside the book are detailed instructions and a starter pack of black-and-white Ilford photo paper. Open the book, and a camera emerges from the pages. Lock the tabs on the upper corners to turn the camera into a proper box.
From there, it’s standard pinhole photography: simply load the camera with some paper or film in darkness, open up the shutter when you want to expose a photo, and develop your paper/film.
With black-and-white photo paper, you can take the negative and invert it digitally for the final image.
Here’s a short instructional video that shows the process from start to finish:
Anderson is self-publishing “This Book is a Camera,” and it’s currently available for $29 on her website. If you like do-it-yourself projects, Anderson has also generously made her camera’s design available for free as a PDF under a Creative Commons license.