Raspberry Pi Powers Digitally Analog Polaroid Camera

Raspberry Pi
(Image credit: Nico Tangara)

As the saying goes, take a photo it will last longer! But in the case of maker and developer Nico Tangara’s recent Raspberry Pi project, it will last as long as the e-Ink display keeps it. Using our favorite SBC, Tangara has created a portable camera that outputs images to an e-Ink display HAT. He dubs the project a digitally analog polaroid camera, for its ability to immediately output captured photos on its display.

The screen used in this project is a Waveshare 2.7-inch ePaper HAT. This HAT also sports a series of buttons off to the side. It snaps into place using the GPIO on the Raspberry Pi. To capture an image, Tangara uses one of the buttons to initiate a script that interacts with a camera module. Once a photo has been taken, the Pi processes it for the e-Ink screen and displays it.

Raspberry Pi

(Image credit: Nico Tangara)

The HAT has a total of four buttons that can be programmed with custom functions. Using just one would be a waste, so Tangara decided to throw in a few extra features. For example, one button can be used to clear the image from the display while another button is dedicated to showing the name of the project on the display.

The case for the project was designed by Tangara, using Blender and Snapmaker. The final design was then 3D printed. It houses the Raspberry Pi 3B+ as well as the Camera Module, with a window showing the e-Ink display. Although a Raspberry Pi 3 is used for this project, you could get away with using a Pi 4 or even something smaller like a Pi Zero.

Another interesting aspect to this project was Tangara’s decision to create the code using Chat GPT. All of the scripts were AI-generated and adjusted to work with his final design. You can see more about this process in the video he shared to YouTube showing off the camera. If you want to see this Raspberry Pi project in action, check out the demo video and be sure to follow Nico Tangara for more cool creations as well as any future updates on this one.

Ash Hill
Freelance News and Features Writer

Ash Hill is a Freelance News and Features Writer with a wealth of experience in the hobby electronics, 3D printing and PCs. She manages the Pi projects of the month and much of our daily Raspberry Pi reporting while also finding the best coupons and deals on all tech.