TEFAU – pinhole camera

TEFAU is a pinhole camera cut-out, which works as a simple camera obscura. The camera obscura effect was first described by the Chinese philosopher Mo Ti in the 5th century BC. The light reflected from an object passes through the hole in the chamber wall and falls on the wall opposite, which forms an inverted image of the object.

Pinhole camera consists of two main parts; a lightproof chamber and a hole, through which light passes to the chamber. In order for the pinhole camera to record projected image, two more parts are needed; a shutter (often just a black tape or some other simple mechanism) and photosensitive material (photographic paper, film or nowadays also digital matrix).

Project TEFAU was developed as a part of a master’s thesis. The project consists of two parts. The first part is a final product developed by the author intended for eventual production and the second part is an open source project licensed as Creative Commons ‒­ some right reserved; meaning that it can be downloaded from the project website and the print design can be customized in various ways. The files for customization can be downloaded from the project website too. The modified project can be further distributed freely for non-profitable purposes only; with the original author appropriately credited and project website link included.

The project was inspired by a children’s toy in a shape of a television set originating from Cologne, which contains a simple mechanism that enables backlight picture viewing.

If you like TEFAU; you created a creative version of the camera; or you want to share the pictures made by your TEFAU; send it to tefau@polygonrain.com (include your full name, the name of the camera version, the author and title of every picture, the exposure time and the type of the film and film development). Don’t forget to consent to the free indefinite presentation of your works at www.polygonrain.com.

Creative Commons License

Tefau – pinhole camera by Ondrej Revicky is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

download pdf
download svg

V5.0 – Modified backside of element X3

V4.0 – Fixed missing line/hole for shutter in element C

Tefau custom
tefau visual closed
tefau visal det
MOCKUP UZKY (Custom)


special thanks to Dawid, Monika, Karolina, Jakub, Zuzka, Seba and University of Rzeszow