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Solarcan - The "All-In-One" Solargraphy Film Camera

Our Price: £16.00 GBP



Solarcan is a fascinating product that sits at a unique junction between photography, astronomy and art. Each Solarcan is a self-contained and pre-loaded solargraphy camera which means it can be used to take long-exposure photographs of the sun. And by long exposure, we mean looooooong exposure! Weeks if not months, as each day brings a new sun trail to layer onto the contained photography paper. Check out the sample images for examples of what the community has already created, and find out how easy they are to use with the instructions and video below!  

What is a Solarcan?


How do I use?

Experimentation and creativity are highly encouraged. However for consistent results we would recommend the following process:

  1. Buy your Solarcan from this very product page :-) Or if you want to get a bulk discount and experiment with several exposures then grab the 5-pack!
  2. Find a suitable location facing the Sun with a good view of the sky and horizon
  3. If any doubt, seek permission from local authorities/land-owners for the installation (remember this is a silver metallic can that will be in place for several weeks!)
  4. Using the supplied cable ties, secure your Solarcan firmly to an appropriate sturdy fence/pole/pipe
  5. When you’re ready, carefully remove the black label covering the pinhole and let the magic begin
  6. Place the black label on the end of your Solarcan for safe keeping and mark a date in your calendar for retrieval
  7. Remember where you put it (!) and check in on your camera once in a while
  8. When ready to recover your Solarcan, head back and cover the pinhole using the black tab you saved to end the exposure and stop any unwanted light passing through
  9. Snip the cable ties to release your Solarcan from it's mooring and take everything back home with you
  10. Open your Solarcan in subdued light and marvel at your image!



How do I develop it?
There is NO chemical development needed after retrieving your Solarcan! It's so simple, you can either use a scanner and invert the image in Photoshop (or similar) - or take a photo on your phone and use an app to invert.
Will the paper remain light sensitive once I remove it from the Solarcan
Yes - but it is a very-low ISO photographic paper so don't worry about it being ruined as soon as you open the can. We would however recommend opening the can in subdued light and scanning/photographing the image reasonably quickly to ensure any post-exposure light pollution is kept to a minimum.
Can I fix the paper?
No chemical developing is required. We encourage experimentation though - so if you do try to fix/stop then please share your results with Solarcan and us on social media!
Note that every Solarcan comes with a 16 page manual with detailed instructions on how to develop and process so if your questions aren't covered here then they will be in the leaflet!



Format: Unique!
Colour: Colour
Type: Negative (no processing needed)
ISO: n/a
Exposures: 1
Pack size: 1 or 5


About the brand

Solarcan is the brainchild of Sam Cornwell: a photography, artist, astronomer and now camera genius! The Solarcan perfectly combines his love for the night sky with his passion for analogue processes and film photography. Initially supported by a successful Kickstarter in 2017, Sam has recently produced the 5,000th unit (that we will be gifting as part of a joint giveaway!) which shows that the Solarcan has already been accepted into the heart of the photography community.

We spent some time with him in preparation for our launch of the Solarcan - as well as discussing his journey so far - and you can read the resulting interview here.


Where we ship

When you buy your camera and film from us we can ship it across the UK, Europe, USA, New Zealand, Australia and Canada (more countries planned soon!) So buy Solarcan today and dive back into the fun of solar film photography!

Customer Reviews

Based on 14 reviews
Fun Product With A Different Take On Analogue Photography

So let me state first that i'm a huge fan of pinhole photography. The concept of capturing time within a single frame continues to fascinate me. So the idea that you can make a single photograph that captures upwards of a year is incredible to me.
Before Solarcan was a thing i was making my own cameras that would so the same thing but now everything you need comes in this handle product. It was a real faff doing it yourself, not to mention the amount of paper you had to buy from the off, and the fact that Solarcan now provides it all, ready set up and ready to go is great. The camera arrives in lovely packaging with a great instruction manual giving you all the details you could need and example photographs - and even comes with the zip ties to mount it somewhere!
Everything thought of and executed well and affordable. Give it a shot, but remember you'll be waiting a long time to see your results!
5 Star product for sure.

Summer-Winter Solstice 2020

I put up my Solarcan on 21 June and took it down on 21 December and am ending my year with a rainbow 🌈 I processed this in a combination of PS and Lightroom. Might try a year for my next one. Fun and easy to use. Now planning my next one.

Solar can

Finally found the right software for processing the solar can image! Fab! It is so easy to use, my mother was even able to follow along with the instructions! I had this installed at the end of July, took it down at the end of September. It was quick, easy to use and is not intrusive or looked out of place. I will be getting more, putting them up for longer this time.

Just bought my second!

really cute and fun tool for tracking light trails and gives some cool results! I left this one out for 6 months in my garden, my neighbors decided to put a cannopy up a few weeks after i installed it so i only have half an image haha, but still very cool! Just ordered a new one which i want to leave somewhere for a whole year.

Fun and rewarding

Quite honestly I love this solarcan. It’s well packaged with very clear instructions. I left my first one out for six months in my west facing garden. Once the exposure was complete I followed the instructions and got an amazing image. I have bought another one and is currently outside taking another six month exposure. I’m at the moment planning to buy some more to try out some ideas I have. I recommend this camera