US3906528A - Photographic composing aid enclosed within a camera handle - Google Patents

Photographic composing aid enclosed within a camera handle Download PDF

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US3906528A
US3906528A US5038070A US3906528A US 3906528 A US3906528 A US 3906528A US 5038070 A US5038070 A US 5038070A US 3906528 A US3906528 A US 3906528A
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handle
image
camera
subject
lens
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Bruce K Johnson
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Polaroid Corp
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Polaroid Corp
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    • GPHYSICS
    • G03PHOTOGRAPHY; CINEMATOGRAPHY; ANALOGOUS TECHNIQUES USING WAVES OTHER THAN OPTICAL WAVES; ELECTROGRAPHY; HOLOGRAPHY
    • G03BAPPARATUS OR ARRANGEMENTS FOR TAKING PHOTOGRAPHS OR FOR PROJECTING OR VIEWING THEM; APPARATUS OR ARRANGEMENTS EMPLOYING ANALOGOUS TECHNIQUES USING WAVES OTHER THAN OPTICAL WAVES; ACCESSORIES THEREFOR
    • G03B13/00Viewfinders; Focusing aids for cameras; Means for focusing for cameras; Autofocus systems for cameras
    • G03B13/18Focusing aids

Abstract

A coincident image optical system for composing flashilluminated portraits incorporated within the handle of an inexpensive portrait camera. Enclosure within the handle permits use of an unusually large baseline, thereby providing accurate control of subject-to-camera distance for focusing and flash illuminating the person to be photographed. A frame image forming optical system is also enclosed in the handle. It does not require a separate window being illuminated through one of the coincident image receiving windows. The frame image formed thereby aides the photographer in determining the relation between his view and the recorded image.

Description

United States Patent [191 Johnson [4 1 Sept. 16, 1975 [75] Inventor: Bruce K. Johnson, Andover, Mass.

[73] Assignee: Polaroid Corporation, Cambridge,

Mass.

[22] Filed: June 29, 1970 [21] Appl. No.: 50,380

[52] US. Cl. 354/162; 354/202; 354/221; 354/225 [51] Int. Cl. ..'G03b 3/00 [58] Field of Search 95/44 C, 11 R; 354/162, 354/202, 221, 225

[56] References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 1 1,993,463 3/1935 Thorner 95/44 C 2,249,589 7/1941 Woodbury 95/44 C 2,336,330 12/1943 Wittel 95/44 C 2,693,744 11/1954 Smith et al...... 95/44 C 3,041,919 7/1962 Baur et a1. 95/44 C X 3,076,397 2/1963 Briskin et a1.... 95/44 X 3,331,300 7/1967 Froehlich 95/44 C FOREIGN PATENTS OR APPLICATIONS 619,604 10/1935 Germany 95/44 C 673,707 1 H1963 Canada 95/44 C 1,023,317 l/1958 Germany 95/44 C 639,994 7/1950 United Kingdom 95/44 C Primary Examiner-Richard M. Sheer Attorney, Agent, or FirmFrederick H. Brustman; John W. Ericson [5 7] ABSTRACT A coincident image optical system for composing flash-illuminated portraits incorporated within the handle of an inexpensive portrait camera. Enclosure within the handle permits use of an unusually large baseline, thereby providing accurate control, of subject-to-camera distance for focusing and flash illuminating the person to be photographed. A frame image forming optical system is also enclosed in the handle. It does not require a separate window being illuminated through one of the coincident image receiving windows. The frame image formed thereby aides the photographer in determining the relation between his view and the recorded image.

1 Claim, 9 Drawing Figures PATENIEHSEP rs ms 3. 9 O8, 528

SHEET 1 q 9 IIQVENTOR.

BRUCE K. JOHN80N mma! cma Wm ATTORNEYS PATENTS] SET 1 6 I978 SHEET 2 {l W ways INVENTOR.

BRUCE K. JOHNSON PATENTEB SEP I G i975 saw 3 o g INVENTOR.

BRUCE K. JOHNSON BY A TTORNEYS PATENTED SEP 1 8 I975 ATTORNEYS PHOTOGRAPHIC COMPOSING AID ENCLOSED WITHIN A CAMERA HANDLE BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Photographic portraiture has been the subject of aesthetically as well as technically oriented study throughout the history of photography. In the course of development of the art and its related technology, portraitists have evolved a myriad of techniques, specialized equipment, and studio arrangement to achieve what are considered desirable portraits. Because of the highly specialized nature of the art and its equipment, photographic portrait cameras have not been commercially introduced at prices commensurate with popularly priced cameras of a variety suited for the amateur market. Conversely, conventional cameras suited for use within the amateur or high volume market are not operationally versatile enough to permit an inexperienced amateur photographer to take casual portrait pictures evidencing desirable or significant quality.

Inexpensive portrait cameras versatile enough to relieve the inexperienced amateur photographer of the more complex considerations in taking casual portrait pphotographs is disclosed in my co-pending US. Pat. application Ser. No. 50,648, filed on even date herewith, entitled Portrait Camera Having Synchronization F lash Illumination Source, and assigned to polaroid Corporation, a coporation of Delaware. Unlike expensive and bulky cameras for professional and commercial use which employ reflex or focal plane viewing and focusing, cameras intended for casual portrait photography comparatively inexperienced amateur photographers must employ a simpler auxiliary optical arrangement to compose the portrait and establish the proper subject-to-camera distance. The portrait composing auxiliary arrangement must also be free of parallax.

Studio portrait work is often characterized by conditions which are confusing, inconvenient, or impractical for an amateur photographer engaged in making casual portraits. Portrait photography, particularly in commercial studios, is often characterized by a considerable amount of expensive equipment, complex lighting arrangements, backdrops, props with whichto pose a subject, and particularly by expensive cameras which are often large and immobile. The professional portrait photographer often determines the camera-subject distance with tape measures and sets his lenses accordingly. Sometimes, he arrives at a chosen subject-tocamera distance by observing an upside-down image of his subject through a ground glass camera back while standing under a blackout cloth. In the latter circumstance, he continually focuses the lens while moving the camera forward and back, finally arriving at some arrangement of composition and focus that satisfies him. A third possibility frequently encountered in portrait studios is a fixed arrangement where the subject is posed in a stationary chair before a fixed camera a predetermined distance away. The same flexible arrange ment is used for all conditions and subjects day after day.

Portrait composition is usually through means of a ground glass camera back substituted for film, permitting the portrait photographer to see what will appear in the camera before making his photograph. Portrait composition in this manner usually requires the photographer to hide under blackout cloth to see the image appearing on the ground glass. Further complication is caused by the image which is upside down and reversed laterally. Later, he must exchange film for the ground glass being careful not to upset his arrangements if his portrait is to appear as intended. Typically, despite complex lighting arrangements common to professional portrait work, careful photometric measurements are usually made of the subject using delicate, expensive light meters to determine appropriate lens settings for the portrait camera.

Photographic cameras suited for use by amateurs have, in the past, been provided with various arrangements for aiming the camera and measuring in some manner the distance to the scene. Rangefinders for measuring an unknown distance to the subject suffer many drawbacks. They must be manipulated to make the measurement or to set the camera and frequently become uncalibrated from continuous use or the shocks of normal handling. Their accuracy leaves must to be desired due to the relatively short baseline commonly employed. Direct measuring rangefinders can be confusing to use. They are complex, expensive, and very fragile. Further, when they are used for aiming the camera as well as ranging, they frequently cause composition errors due to parallax introduced at short distances. Arrangements to correct viewfinders for parallax are often extremely cumbersome and complicated, requiring programmed movement of the rangefinder assembly during ranging. Parallax errors as used herein refer to substantial and misleading differences between the photograph composition seen by the photographer through the viewfinder and the composition of the image within the film format because the camera and viewfinder are not coaxial. Rangefinder-viewfinder combinations often require a third window to illuminate the viewfinder reticle.

Construction of a versatile self-contained portrait camera system both suitable and convenient for amateur use requires satisfying several strongly interrelated conditions. A pleasing portrait of an individual should have a relatively large image of the subjects head and shoulders. Amateur cameras are usually fitted with simple fixed focal length lenses. To maintain a pleasing proportionality between portraits, magnification should be the same for all. This is accomplished by having every subject precisely the same distance from the camera. A relatively large image on the specific film size is achieved by using a lens having a narrow field and focal length substantially longer than usually associated with the same film format in non-portrait cameras.

Comparatively short distances at which portraits are made result insignificant magnification changes if the subject is not a specific distance from the lens for each photograph. Focusing capability in the lens does not solve the magnification problem, but merely provides a sharp image with inappropriate magnification. Assuring the subject to be an appropriate distance from the camera eliminates the necessity of a focusing mechanism, thereby simplifying the portrait cameras use and assuring the user of appropriate image magnification.

A versatile portrait camera for amateur use desirably have a self-contained system for illuminating the subject. Illumination falling on a subject, by which it can be photographed, is proportional to the square of its distance from the light source. It can be appreciated that samll distance variations between subject and light source result in marked illumination changes. Permitting illumination on the subject to vary requires providing means for evaluating the variation and compensating the cameras optical system therefor. As noted above, this can become complex, time consuming, and inconvenient; it is certainly an undesirable situation for a portrait camera intended for convenient use by amateurs. Variations in subject illumination can be eliminated by establishing the subject at a specified distance from a standard light source. This can be a standard flash cube placed on the portrait camera.

The discussion above clarifies the importance of always positioning the portraits subject a specific distance from the camera. Precise positioning of the subject permits construction of a versatile, easy-to-use, portrait camera which consistently and reliably produces pleasing portraits with minimum complication and maximum convenience for the amateur photographer. Having the subject at a precise distance before the camera relieves the photographer of a concern for precise illumination, focus, mangification, and their consequences, freeing him to concentrate upon obtaining the most pleasing composition for his portraits.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The present invention is addressed to an arrangement of optical components whereby the amateur portrait photographer looking through this novel optical system has merely to approach his subject with the camera until a single image of his subject is seen. This precisely establishes the proper subject-to-camera distance. The photographer can simultaneously compose the portrait.

The novel portrait composing aid comprises two widely separated optical paths which intersect a predetermined distance in front of the portrait camera. Images transmitted along each path are combined by an optical system, contained within the portrait cameras handle, presenting to the photographer a single image of his subject when the camera and subject are sepa rated by the proper distance. At all other distances, dual vertically separated images of the subject appear. Their separation is in relation to the subjects distance from the camera. Enclosing the optical system within a long camera handle permits using an exceedingly large baseline. inside the handle, with the range establishing optics. Accuracy with which the distance can be set depends directly on the systems baseline. With the optics mounted inside the handle, ordinary third window means for illuminating a frame reticle are not possible. An optical system, concentric about the distanceestablishing optical system, within the portrait cameras handle provides the photographer with a virtual frame image, superimposed around the subject, defining the extent of the portrait, thereby aiding him in his composition. Illumination for forming the frame image enters through one of the two windows for receiving the optical paths. The entire optical system is adjusted relative to the camera to eliminate parallax errors when the subject is at the predetermined distance.

It is an object of this invention to provide an optical system whereby the amateur portrait photographer can reliably compose his subjects portrait within the camera simultaneously assuring that the subject is a predeterminedunique distance from the camera.

Another object of this invention is to provide such an optical system with a field defining frame to aid the photographers composition.

A further object of this invention is to provide a simple but precise distance-establishing optical system.

Other objects of the invention will in part be obvious and will in part appear hereinafter.

The invention accordingly comprises the portrait composing and subject distance-establishing optical ap paratus possessing the construction, combination of elements, and the arrangement of parts which are exemplified in the following detailed disclosure and the scope of the application will be indicated in the claims.

For a fuller understanding of the nature and objects of the invention, reference should be had to the following detailed description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings wherein:

FIG. 1 illustrates a versatile easy-to-use portrait camera with a portrait composing, subject distanceestablishing, optical system incorporated within its handle;

FIG. 2 illustrates a cross-section through the camera handle showing the arrangement of elements of the concentric optical systems;

FIG. 3 illustrates the mechanical arrangement and relation of the principal optical elements of the apparatus;

FIG. 4 illustrates in plane view a portion of the beam splitter retaining plate;

FIG. 5 illustrates the reticle whose image forms the field defining frame; I

FIG. 6 is a plane view illustrating the field mask;

FIG. 7 illustrates in plane view another field mask;

FIG. 8 is a schematic illustration of the optical system including certain frame image-forming light rays;

FIG. 9 illustrates the use of the optical system and its optical paths to establish the portrait subjects distance from the camera.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION Reference should now be had to FIG. 1. Illustrated therein is a self-sufficient portrait camera 10 for amateur photographers. It comprises a housing 12 with a portrait lens 14 having relatively long focal length and a film chamber 16 holding a phtographic film pack (not shown) designed to present in sequence several sheets of photographic film into the image plane. Mounted on top of camera body 12 is boss 18 to receive flash cube 20. Fresnel lens 22 is also mounted at the front of camera body 12, to control flash cube light distribution on the portraits subject. Contained within handleshaped housing 26, which is attached to film chamber 16, is an optical system 24 to aid the photographer in composing his portrait. Handle 26 contains entrance windows 28 and 30, each having a transparent cover 32. A grip, by which the handle can be grasped, separates windows 28 and 30. The image by which the photographer composes the portrait enters through window 28. Light for illuminating the field defining frame image enters via window 30 which also admits another partial image of the subject which together with the other imge determines the subjects proper position.

A cross-section of handle 26 illustrating its features and the arrangment of the portrait composing optical system 24 is presented in FIG. 2. Handle 26 comprises a front shell 26,, with entrance windows 28, 30 integrally molded therein from plastic. Rear shell 26,, is also molded from plastic and encloses the optical system when assembled with front shell 26,,. Other structural elements are molded integrally with plastic shells 26,,

and 26, They are described below. To protect the op-; tics from dust, entrance windows 28, 30 are fitted with.

transparent covers. 32- having mounting tabs which attach to pins (notshown) molded into front shell 26 Exit window 40 snaps into retaining clips (not shown) formed in rear shell 26,,. Through window 40, the photographer composes the portrait and determines its subject to be at the proper distance from the camera. Thumb rest 42 is incorporatedinto rear handle shell 26,, for the photographers convenience. Light baffles 44 are molded as integral parts of front and rear shells 26,, and 26,,. They inhibitthe passage of stray light rays which might otherwise detract from the information the optical systems present to the photographer. Both optical systems are mountedon main frame 46 which can be economically made from a metal stamping. Main frame 46 is attached to handle 26 by a support tab 48. Support tab 48 has a mounting tab 49 (see FIG. 3) which fits over mounting post 50 molded as an integral part of front shell 26a. Support tab 48 and through it the optical systems are retained on mounting post 50 by fastener 52.

The principal optical elements are a mirror 54, dual positive lens 56, dual negative lens 58, and beam splitter 60. Central portions of dual lenses 56 and 58 form a weak Galilean telescope. It yields a weakly magnified virtual image of the subject. Its purpose is to compensate the image portion entering window 30 for the difference in optical path length represented by the unusally large baseline used between mirror 54 and beam splitter 60. Outer portions of dual lenses 56 and 58 are both positive. They illuminate and form the field defining frame image used to compose portraits. Outer segment S6,, of dual lens 56 serves as a field lens bending light rays through reticle 62 toward the outer portion 58 of dual lens 58 which forms the virtual frame image of the reticle seen by the photographer. See FIG. 8, also.

Other important elements in the optical systems are portrait composing frame reticle 62, image field limiting mask 64, field mask 66, and beam splitter retainer 68, whose aperture shape 108 helps define the boundaries of the portrait composing optical system.

Attached to the lower end of main frame 46 is lateral locating tab 72, having a vertical locating slot 73 (see FIG. 3). Lateral locating tab 72 prevents lateral displacement and vibration of main frame 46 by engagement with locating post 74 molded integrally with front shell 26. Portions of the metal stamping forming main frame 46 are bent to form main frame stiffeners 76 (see FIG. 3). Main frame light baffles 78 are also punched and bent from the stamping. The arrangement shown in FIG. 2 is used rather than a single long baffle to prevent excessive weakening of main frame 46 at the baffle 78 location. Main frame light baffles 78 serve the same functions as integrally molded light baffles 44. Mounting brackets 80 retain dual negative lens 58 and field mask 66. They can be made by bending and shaping extensions of the metal stamping forming main frame 46. Mounting brackets 82 retain dual positive lens 56 and portrait composing frame reticle 62 in place. They, too, can be made by bending and shaping extensions of the principal metal stamping.

Beam splitter 60 is retained in position betwen beam splitter retainer 68 and beam splitter support bracket 84. Beam splitter support bracket 84 is attached to main frame 46 and canbe formed as part of the principal metal stamping. Support bracket 84 has a relatively large aperture through which the photographer can see his portrait subject. Beam splitter retainer 68 is preferably formed as a single piece with field mask 66 and spring clips 86. Spring clips 86 bear on beam splitter support bracket 84 gripping beam splitter therebetween. Engagement of field mask 66 with mounting bracket restrains the other end of retainer 68.

Mirror 54 is held in place between mirror support bracket 88, also attached to main frame 46 and mirror frame 90. Spring clips 92 connected to mirror frame slip over support bracket 88 (see FIG. 3') thereby retaining mirror 54. A tab 94 (see FIG. 3) attached to mirror frame 90 opposite spring clips 92 prevents it from moving laterally.

Additional features and structure of the optical system can be seen by having reference now to FIG. 3. Mirror 54 is held by sping clips 92 against a three point optical suspension system comprising dimple I00, lateral adjusting screw 102, and vertical adjusting screw 104. The three points of suspension are arranged so rotation of the screw 102 adjusts the image reflected from mirror 54 laterally in exit window 40. It pivots mirror 54 about an axis defined by dimple and adjusting screw 104. Turning screw 104 adjusts the image vertically. It pivots mirror 54 about an axis defined by dimple 100 and adjusting screw 102.

Beam splitter 60 is located by three dimples 106 (one not shown) pressed into beam splitter retainer 68, in turn held onto main frame through spring clips 86 (see FIG. 2). Dimples 106 in beam splitter retainer 68 are also arranged to form a three point triangular optical suspension system. Beam splitter retainer 68 has a large trapezoidal aperture 108. Aperture 108 defines the viewfinders field while a virtual frame outlines the cameras field within it. The apertures 108 trapezoidal shape is due to its inclination.

Mounting bracket 80 is provided with lens tab retaining slots 110 to engage integral lens mounting tab 112 and field mask mounting tab 114. Mounting bracket 80 is fitted with channel 115 to simplify engagement of mounting tabs 112 and 114 with slot 110. Mounting bracket 82 is perforated by lens tab retaining slot 116 into which is inserted integral lens mounting tab 118 and reticle mounting tab 120 retaining both reticle 62 and dual positive lens 56. Channel 121 is bent into the end of mounting bracket 82 to facilitate assembly of lens 56 and reticle 62 with mounting bracket 82.

Image field limiting mask 64 has a central squareshaped mask aperture 122 which transmits one of the dual images viewed by the photographer while composing his subjects portrait. Mask 64 is attached to main frame 46 by field mask support 132.

FIGS. 4 7 illustrate in greater detail certain parts of Tabs 120 retain it in brackets 82. Slots 134 are brightline reticle elements from which the image of the field defining frame is formed. Aperturel36 permits the passage of one image for use in the coincident image range-establishing optical system.

FIG. 6 illustrates image field limiting mask 64. Its central aperture 122 transmits one of the dual images whose coincidence indicates camera to be properly spaced from the portraits subject. Field mask support 132 attaches field mask 66 to main frame 46.

FIG. 7 illustrates field mask 66. Attached to it are tabs 114 which serve to hold it in place. Mullions 124 support frame 126. The inner edge of frame 126 helps define the field of view for one of the two image paths of the portrait composing optical system.

The portrait composing optical system of this invention comprises two concentric optical systems. The outer imaging arrangement in the verticle handle 26 forms a virtual frame image about the subject aiding the photographer in composing his portrait. The inner image-forming optical system is a Galilean telescopic arrangement which adjusts the magnification of the image transmitted through it so the superimposed images viewed by the photographer have the same magnification and appear to be equally distant. Reference should now be had to FIG. 8 which is an optical schematic of the portrait composing system. Principal optical components and the handle 26 in which they are housed are shown. A photographer viewing through exit window 40 sees dual images combined by beam splitter 60. One image reaches the eye via upper optical path 150 through window 28, beam splitter 60, and exit window 40. It is seen by the photographer at 1:1 magnification. By 1:1 magnification is meant the image,

through the optical system, is the same size as one seen refraction through the Galilean telescope comprising 7 weak positive lens 56,- and weak negative lens 58,. After refraction through the Galilean telescope, the lower optical path image is reflected by beam splitter 60 through exit window to the eye. upper optical path and lower optical path images are combined at beam splitter 60. Upper optical path 150 and lower optical path 152 intersect at a preselected distance in front of the portrait composing optical system. See FIG. 9, too. Images of any subject located precisely at this intersection appear in registration to the photographer viewing through exit window 40. Images of any subject in the line of sight not precisely at the intersection are seen to be separated. Separation increases very markedly with increasing displacement from the point of intersection. This unusual sensitivity is due to the unusually large separation between beam splitter and mirror 54 compared to the distance to the intersection. The unusually large baseline, for a camera, is possible because the optics are located within camera handle 26. In portrait composing optical systems according to this invention, the distance between mirror 54 and beam splitter 60 is preferably greater than ten percent of the intended distance between the camera and subject.

One-to-one magnification is used in portrait composing optical systems according to this invention for several reasons. Annoying wiggling and jumping of the images due to camera movement is avoided. Further, experience has taught that users find it far easier to use aberration-free one-to-one optical systems for portrait composing than a system with magnified but aberrated images. This stems from distracting qualities of uncorrected, magnified images. Correcting magnified images is extremely expensive and impractical in simplified inexpensive portrait composing cameras. Elimination of image mangifying optics also slighly improves image brightness in comparison with a system using finite magnification. Another advantage in one-to-one magnification is the photographer can alternate between viewing his subject directly and through the portrait composing optics without having to accommodate his eye to different image sizes.

The weak Galilean telescope comprising positive lens 56,- and negative lens 58,- is incorporated into lower optical path 152 to compensate for the unusually large optical path differences between upper optical path and lower optical path 152. Lower optical path 152 is 10 percent, or more, longer than upper optical path 150 because of the unusually large baseline distance between mirror 54 and beam splitter 60. The weak Galilean telescope has sufficient power to cause the image transmitted along lower optical path 152 to seen closer by an amount equal to the path differences between upper and lower optical paths 150 and 152. The magnification is changed appropriately as well so a photographer viewing through exit window 40 notices no difference in apparent image sizes or distances. Offaxis optical rays passing through the telescope are not shown in the drawing because their refraction is so slight. Axial light rays can be considered to travel to the eye along paths defined by 150 and 152.

Full-field super-positionof the separate images traveling along optical paths 150 and 152 is not used. The image perceived viewing along optical path 150 has an angular subtence approximately equal to the frame size. This is established by eye position size and trapezoidal shape of field defining aperture 108. Angular subtence of the image reaching the eye along lower optical path 152 is defined by the approximate position of the eye and mask aperture 122. Angular subtence of the image transmitted along lower optical path 152 is intentionally limited. That image has approximately half the linear dimensions of the other. Limiting the extent of image super-position avoids distracting effects which might be encountered with full-field superposition.

The frame image forming the optical system is unusual in two respects. It is arranged in a roughly concentric manner about one optical path in the portrait composing system and, in consequence, it also does not require the use of a third window to illuminate the frame reticle. Referring to FIG. 8, it is seen that field lens 56 which is the outer portion of dual lens 56, refracts reticle illuminating light rays 153 toward outer lens segment 58,, of dual lens 58. Field lens 56 refracts reticle illuminating light rays 153 in a direction appropriate to pass several light baffles 44 and 64. Frame reticle 62 is spaced from outer lens segment 58,, a distance not greater than its focal length, thereby forming a virtual image. Light rays 153, incident on reticle frame 62, illuminate bright-line reticle element 134. Frame image-forming light rays 154 pass between baffles 44 and the'outer edge of field mask 64, which also serves as a baffle. They are incident on outer lens segment 58 It forms a virtual image of bright-line reticle element 134. After refraction by outer lens segment 58 light rays 154 are reflected by beam splitter 60 towards the pupil of the viewers eye. To the photographer viewing through window 40, light rays 154appear to have traveled along apparent light path 154 Lens segment 58,, forms a bright-line frame for picture composing which is an image of reticle elements 134. Its power is se lected so the frame image appears to be located where the subject is to be. This corresponds to point where upper and lower optical paths 150 and 152 intersect. Reticle elements 134 are sized so they form a frame image of appropriate size about the subjet when their virtual image is magnified by outer lens segment 58,,. Further, reticle elements 134 are spaced along the axis so the portrait composing virtual frame image encompasses a field, about the subject, having linear dimensions approximately seven percent smaller than the linear dimensions actually recorded on the photographic film. This provides the amateur portrait photographer with a useful margin of safety in composing his portraits. Minor composing errors, e.g., due to inexperience, do not result, inadvertently, in excluding a por tion of the subject.

Beam splitter 60 can have a full reflecting mirror on its surface, except for central beam splitting portion 60 The full reflecting portion of beam splitter 60 increases the reflection of frame forming light rays 154 toward the eye while eliminating transmission of light rays from the edge of the subject field. The necessary image to be received along optical path 150 is transmitted through semitransparent portion 60,,.This arrangement considerably enhances the apparent brightness of the frame, aiding the photographer in composing his portrait. The appearance of the scene viewed by the photographer is that of the portraits subject with brightness of his surroundings decreasing toward the fields edges. A bright frame appears in the region of decreased brightness surrounding the subject. This is an attractive arrangement for the photographer because it tends to simulate a desirable portrait lighting arrangement, vignetting, which is often achieved.

Avoiding a third window to provide light for illuminating the reticle is important. This optical system has been located within the portrait cameras handle so a large baseline can be used. Being within the camera handle there is no convenient position for a third window. Therefore, the concentric optical system arrangement disclosed had to be devised.

In certain circumstances, it might be convenient to provide tilting adjustments for beam splitter 60 so the field if view bordered by the frame image can be adjusted, at assembly, to correpond to the field recorded by the photographic film. Tilting adjustment can also be provided for mirror 54 so, at assembly, the point of intersection between upper optical path 150 and lower optical path 152 can be set at the precise distance from the portrait composing optical system where the subject is to be.

As seen in FIG. 1, the portrait composing system encompassed within handle 26 is set off to the side of the cameras optical axis. Because this portrait composing system is always used comparatively close to the sub ject, it is desirably mounted on the camera with a slight offset toward the cameras optical axis so upper optical path 150 and lower optical path 152 intersect each other and the cameras axis at substantially the same place. Portrait composing errors due to parallax are thereby avoided.

The basic method of the photographer in using this optical system in composing portraits of his subjects is to aim at the subject sighting through exit window 40.

He then advances toward or retreats from subject until the dual images coincide and the subject is pleasingly positioned within the frames image. He can then snap his photograph with assurance that the portrait will be properly illuminated, in proper focus, and as it was posed. While the camera handle contained ranging system described is particularly adapted to verifying the subject to be a predetermined distance from the camera it is within the scope of this invention to modify the components inside the camera handle so the ranging system can also be used to determine an unknown range to the subject. Since certain changes may be made in the above camera handle encased portrait composing optical system without departing from the scope of the invention herein involved, it is intended that all matter contained in the above description or shown in the accompanying drawings shall be interpreted as illustrative and not in a limiting sense.

What is claimed is:

1. A portable photographic camera comprising: means for forming a real image of a subject on a photosensitive material within an area of given size and shape;

a handle, fixed to said camera, having a grip thereon to grasp said handle by, for providing manual support to said camera;

first and second entrance windows, in said handle, separated by said grip, for allowing light to enter said handle;

a fixed beam splitter, inside said handle, behind said first entrance window, for receiving a first image of said subject through said first entrance window;

a fixed mirror, inside said handle, behind said second entrance window, for receiving a second image of said subject through said second entrance window and reflecting said second image along a base line through said handle past said grip towards said fixed beam splitter where said first and second im ages are combined by said fixed beam splitter, said first and second images reaching said first and second windows along first and second optical paths, respectively, that intersect at a predetermined fixed distance from said camera;

an exit window positioned behind said fixed beam splitter to transmit said combined images;

lens means, inside said handle and disposed along said baseline, for adjusting the size and apparent origin of said second image so said first and said second images of said subject appear, viewed through said exit window, to be the same size and diistance from said camera;

frame means, inside said handle, for forming an outline of bright lines around said combined images of said subject, said outline being illuminated by light entering said handle through said second entrance window and reaching said frame means via said mirror and its size being related to said area on said photosensitive material within which said real image is formed, said outline being viewable through said exit window, said frame means including a field lens, a reticle and a magnifying lens, said field lens directing the light rays forming said outline through said reticle, said reticle having transparent portions in the shape of said outline, towards said frame lens, said magnifying lens forming said outline as a virtual image of said reticles transparent portions, said reticle, said field lens, and magnifying lens being coaxial with said baseline and surrounding said image size adjusting lens means; and

a main frame member, inside said handle, vigidly supporting said beam splitter, said mirror, said lens means, and said frame means.

Claims (1)

1. A portable photographic camera comprising: means for forming a real image of a subject on a photosensitive material within an area of given size and shape; a handle, fixed to said camera, having a grip thereon to grasp said handle by, for providing manual support to said camera; first and second entrance windows, in said handle, separated by said grip, for allowing light to enter said handle; a fixed beam splitter, inside said handle, behind said first entrance window, for receiving a first image of said subject through said first entrance window; a fixed mirror, inside said handle, behind said second entrance window, for receiving a second image of said subject through said second entrance window and reflecting said second image along a base line through said handle past said grip towards said fixed beam splitter where said first and second images are combined by said fixed beam splitter, said first and second images reaching said first and second windows along first and second optical paths, respectively, that intersect at a predetermined fixed distance from said camera; an exit window positioned behind said fixed beam splitter to transmit said combined images; lens means, inside said handle and disposed along said baseline, for adjusting the size and apparent origin of said second image so said first and said second images of said subject appear, viewed through said exit window, to be the same size and diistance from said camera; frame means, inside said handle, for forming an outline of bright lines around said combined images of said subject, said outline being illuminated by light entering said handle through said second entrance window and reaching said frame means via said mirror and its size being related to said area on said photosensitive material within which said real image is formed, said outline being viewable through saId exit window, said frame means including a field lens, a reticle and a magnifying lens, said field lens directing the light rays forming said outline through said reticle, said reticle having transparent portions in the shape of said outline, towards said frame lens, said magnifying lens forming said outline as a virtual image of said reticle''s transparent portions, said reticle, said field lens, and magnifying lens being coaxial with said baseline and surrounding said image size adjusting lens means; and a main frame member, inside said handle, vigidly supporting said beam splitter, said mirror, said lens means, and said frame means.
US5038070 1970-06-29 1970-06-29 Photographic composing aid enclosed within a camera handle Expired - Lifetime US3906528A (en)

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US9372347B1 (en) 2015-02-09 2016-06-21 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Display system
US9423360B1 (en) 2015-02-09 2016-08-23 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Optical components
US9429692B1 (en) 2015-02-09 2016-08-30 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Optical components
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US9535253B2 (en) 2015-02-09 2017-01-03 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Display system
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US9827209B2 (en) 2015-02-09 2017-11-28 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Display system
US10018844B2 (en) 2015-02-09 2018-07-10 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Wearable image display system
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US10317677B2 (en) 2015-02-09 2019-06-11 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Display system
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Cited By (26)

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US5715489A (en) * 1996-04-10 1998-02-03 Inaba; Minoru Stereo camera
US20130162673A1 (en) * 2011-12-23 2013-06-27 David D. Bohn Pixel opacity for augmented reality
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US9297996B2 (en) 2012-02-15 2016-03-29 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Laser illumination scanning
US9779643B2 (en) 2012-02-15 2017-10-03 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Imaging structure emitter configurations
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US9581820B2 (en) 2012-06-04 2017-02-28 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Multiple waveguide imaging structure
US10192358B2 (en) 2012-12-20 2019-01-29 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Auto-stereoscopic augmented reality display
US9304235B2 (en) 2014-07-30 2016-04-05 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Microfabrication
US10254942B2 (en) 2014-07-31 2019-04-09 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Adaptive sizing and positioning of application windows
US9423360B1 (en) 2015-02-09 2016-08-23 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Optical components
US9827209B2 (en) 2015-02-09 2017-11-28 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Display system
US10018844B2 (en) 2015-02-09 2018-07-10 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Wearable image display system
US9535253B2 (en) 2015-02-09 2017-01-03 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Display system
US9372347B1 (en) 2015-02-09 2016-06-21 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Display system
US10317677B2 (en) 2015-02-09 2019-06-11 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Display system
US9513480B2 (en) 2015-02-09 2016-12-06 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Waveguide
US9429692B1 (en) 2015-02-09 2016-08-30 Microsoft Technology Licensing, Llc Optical components

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