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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Passion for pinhole photography sparks class, exhibit on NE

Student+photographer+Aaron+Hutchinson+and+his+art
Student photographer Aaron Hutchinson and his art

By Cody Daniels/reporter

One of Aaron Hutchinson’s favorite photographs, “Spike,” is part of Answers Come in Dreams, an exhibit of his work on display in the NE Campus library. The photos in the exhibit were taken with a handmade pinhole camera.  Photo by Georgia Phillips/The Collegian
One of Aaron Hutchinson’s favorite photographs, “Spike,” is part of Answers Come in Dreams, an exhibit of his work on display in the NE Campus library. The photos in the exhibit were taken with a handmade pinhole camera. Photo by Georgia Phillips/The Collegian

Student photographer Aaron Hutchinson has taken photography at TCC to a more classic level and is teaching anyone interested how to do so as well.

Hutchinson has been a photography student on NE Campus for eight years and said he continues to get more creative every year he uses TCC’s photography program. He still needs to finish his basics for a degree but originally started coming to TCC to kill time and enjoy his favorite hobby around others with similar passions.

“I wasn’t really looking to do anything but fill up some time with it but taking photography courses at TCC has helped me to become really obsessed with the hobby,” he said. “I really love doing it and making pinhole cameras. It makes me happy.”

Hutchinson loves the classical aspects of photography and most of the time only uses pinhole cameras to shoot his photos.

“I like pinhole cameras better because the photographs always look better and are more detail-oriented,” he said.

Pinholes, which are usually homemade, have a single tiny hole carved in the middle in which sunlight is bounced off the subject of the photo into the hole, engraving an imprint of the subject onto paper embedded in the lining of the inside.

The longer a camera sits facing the subject in light, the finer the photograph. And the smaller the hole is, the further the distance of focus. Moving the camera during a photo being shot or adding other objects into view while it sits can manipulate photos taken with pinholes. They can be digitally manipulated by scanning and uploading the photos and using digital software.

Hutchinson said he recently started scanning his photos and manipulating them digitally so he could be better rounded in his craft. He also began taking a printmaking course this semester to learn that perspective of the art.

“It makes me happy that I can create these illusions of reality based on my perceptions,” he said. “I can’t really draw, so I let the pinhole camera capture the subject’s light and do the drawing for me.”

Student photographer Aaron Hutchinson shows off his hand-held pinhole camera in the NE photo lab.  Photo by Zach Estrada/The Collegian
Student photographer Aaron Hutchinson shows off his hand-held pinhole camera in the NE photo lab. Photo by Zach Estrada/The Collegian

As far as the future is concerned, Hutchinson plans on eventually finishing his core classes at TCC and attaining a photo degree in some field but wants to take his time and enjoy his art.

“I want photography to always be a hobby, always make me happy and always enjoy it,” he said. “Whatever happens after that, happens.”

Students wishing to learn about making and using pinholes can take Hutchinson’s class as part of the NE Campus photo club. The course will start Nov. 1 and run two weeks weekdays including Saturdays for three to five hours. For more information, email him at aaron.hutchinson@my.tccd.edu.

Some of Hutchinson’s favorite pinhole photographs are currently in the Answers Come in Dreams exhibit in the J. Ardis Bell Library on NE Campus.

His photos are also frequently shown on Saturday nights at the Crackle Art Gallery in Fort Worth.

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