Coming from a heavily digital background, I had some bad experience in Lomography. First is the one with 4 lens in one photo camera (Action Sampler) which i broke it the second time I used; Second is the medium format Belair which I pre-ordered with excitement, but when arrived, found the tactile extremely toy in such size, and I mistakenly thought it has a reasonably usable aperture. (it’s f8 day-light camera when I found out later)
For many people, Lomography is highly overpriced for selling cheaply constructed camera with cheap plastic lens. But is it?
I have to say I have new impressions after I re-visit their site and the photos taken by its community. I’m impressed and aspiring about the somewhat “avant-garde” philosophy about Lomography.
The photos in their site and photobooks are special, energetic, and all those “cheap” construction somehow works together so well. Most people will either love or hate between the lo-fi feel of it. I used to hate it too, but this time I somehow see through that “absolute image quality” criteria and focus on the actual photos, the subject and content, and the “energies” of the subjects that they present.
Im tempted for this new perspective of taking pictures, and I pick the most classic and practical camera to start with: L-CA+
The beauty of this little camera is that, you don’t need to think when taking a picture, and it makes you a better photographer.
Why is it so?
I must say most other lomo cameras with no autoEV and with f8 or above is quite impractical unless you are a full-time day light shooter. And for me, the plasticky feel of them are toys for fun.
well L-CA isn’t. it has a f2.8 and autoEV. fundamentally making it practical. Together with ISO 800 or 1600 films, you can basically shoot in low-light. And its zone-based focus lever isn’t as bad either: its very quick to do it once u get used to.
You do not have the live LCD to judge precisely and you don’t have the review picture like DC. the VF is not precise. aperture is fixed. ISO is fixed. shutter is autoAE, the only thing you have to set is the easy and quick zone focus.
With all the above and its cute yet solid/ un-intrusive form factor, taking pictures is more fun then ever. You lost your control, you focus purely on what you see good.
First roll of ISO800/36 film in my LCA+ yields me 20 photos that i love! what a high hit rate! and even the rest is less exciting, there is only 4 under/over exposures failed photos.
It’s just amazing how a camera can change the habit of your photography.
With more than 10 cameras. film & digital. Lomo L-CA+ is still one of my favorite: pocketable, nothing to set, just work, looks cool, feels analogue. 🙂