How to Make a Pinhole Camera with a Shoe Box: A Modern DIY Project for the Whole Family

With so many cool DIY projects out there, it’s hard to know where to start. With so much information about the latest tech gadgets, photography equipment, and furniture design, it can be difficult to decide what you want to do. Fear not! This guide will show you how to make a pinhole camera with just a shoe box and some basic items that you might have around your house. It’s easy to modify the design based on your needs too! So go ahead and try out this project for yourself!


What is a pinhole camera?

A pinhole camera is a simple camera that requires a single hole to take pictures. Modern pinhole cameras can be made from various materials, but the most common one is a shoe box.

In this guide, we’ll discuss how to make a pinhole camera from scratch with household items and show you how to modify the design for your own needs too.

What do I need to make a shoe box camera?

The first thing you’ll need is a shoe box. It’s best to use a cardboard box and not a plastic one because it will be easier to cut.

You’ll also need:

– A sharp knife or scissors

– Tape

– A hole punch

– Cardboard

– A needle and thread

– A light source (a light bulb works, but the sun can work even better!)

Tools and Materials for this project

– A shoebox

– Tape or glue

– Ruler

– Scissors

The first step for this project is to measure the inside of your shoebox. Make sure that it’s at least 6 inches deep and 6 inches wide. This will help you determine how big to make the pinhole in the front of the camera. You want the hole to be about 1 inch in diameter, so measure accordingly.

Next, tape or glue one end of an index card over the top of the hole on one side of your shoebox. It should be flush with the edges of your box. Then cut a rectangle out of another index card that’s slightly smaller than your shoebox opening on that side (so it’ll fit easily between two flaps). Place this rectangular piece over the hole on other side, making sure it covers up any openings on either side of it. Finally, tape or glue this second piece in place so it’s firmly affixed to both sides of your shoebox opening.

Now you’re ready for shooting! Take a photo by placing an object outside your box and looking through its open front hole at something inside. The depth of field will be much shallower than with a DSL.

Steps to making a pinhole camera with a shoe box

The first step is to cut a hole in the lid of the shoe box.

The second step is to take a piece of paper and hold it over the hole. Tape the paper to the inside of the box.

The third step is to poke through one side of the paper with a needle or pin, making a small hole.

The forth step is to make another hole on the other side of the paper, opposite of where you made your first hole (shown in image below). Put this second hole close enough that light can pass through both holes.

The fifth step is to take pictures by looking through one hole, then move over and look through the other. Try different distances–and see what happens!

Tips and tricks for getting the best photos from your pinhole camera

Anyone can make a pinhole camera! It’s an easy DIY project that doesn’t require much in the way of materials. Follow these tips to get the best results from your homemade pinhole camera.

– Don’t use construction paper or aluminum foil, because light will leak in and ruin your pictures.

– If using cardboard or paper, cover one side with black tape to prevent light leakage.

– Experiment with different sized holes for different effects. The smaller the hole, the sharper the picture will be.

– Consider keeping your object in front of a window so you don’t have to worry about lighting.


The pinhole camera is a great project for the whole family. It takes a little time and patience, but can produce lots of great memories. Pinhole cameras are also inexpensive and you can customize them in any way that suits your needs and your style.