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'World's Biggest, Slowest, and Most Impractical Camera' Made in a Shipping Container

Shipping containers have been turned into some interesting and unusual things over the years, but one photographer has found a new use for them: a giant camera. Photographer Brendan Barry turned a shipping container into a giant camera that even has a built-in darkroom. Barry is known for turning unusual things into fully operational cameras, including mannequins and melons.

Construction of the Shipping Container Camera

The storage container was painted to resemble a giant polaroid camera, and Barry joked that it is "the world’s biggest, slowest and most impractical Polaroid camera." The camera is solar-powered, fully ventilated, and even wheelchair accessible. It features an adjustable lens and a mechanical shutter, giving the feeling of using a camera, just on a much larger scale.

Barry hosted workshops in the Conex container for three weeks, inviting the local community in Exeter to visit his container camera and learn about the traditional process for photos. Once the three-week period ended, Barry transformed the camera again, this time into a gallery to display the photos taken by the shipping container camera.

“The aim of the project was to reach out to a diverse range of people and invite them to make portraits of the community by the community," Barry says. He shared his other goal of "bring[ing] these together to create a series of images that collectively touched on themes of inclusion and collaboration, celebrated diversity, promoted acceptance, and inspired engagement and participation in the arts."

A short documentary was put together to cover more of Barry’s journey with his storage container camera.

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Author: Auz Burger