I always want to take more analogue photographs, and set it as a sort of New Year goal. And I always seem to get to the end of the year and feel like I haven’t done enough. Well it costs money to have films developed, and I struggle to find occasions to photograph. I know the ethos of Lomography is along the lines of ‘no need for an occasion just go out and shoot’ but they are not people who spend most of their free time hanging around the house doing laundry. It’s pretty impossible to use most of my cameras inside due to the low light levels, and during the week in the winter it’s dark when I set off to work and return home. So that screws that up.
Still I decided to give my film cameras a sort out, and see what I’ve got and keep them better organised. I’m hoping I’ll be able to always have one on the go, so that I can just grab it and shoot if I do end up doing something exciting.
Top left are the cameras that I use the most. My new fave is my Agfa (on the left), next to it my Beirette. Both were made in Germany. Both are heavy, chunky, awkward to hold and carry around, but they’re also reliable and sturdy. The Beirette did lose a screw though which caused the back to fall off and so is currently unusable. They both taken regular 35mm film, which is the easier to get hold of and develop, so that’s another reason I love them.
The little one underneath is my only electric film camera, it’s the Canon Ixus and uses expensive batteries to function. (Well, the battery cost £8 but has lasted quite a while). It takes APS film which is simpler to install, unfortunately it’s more expensive to buy and develop. The film also has a It’s been a very reliable camera though, and super compact so great for carrying around.
Moving down to my 5 most unreliable cameras! These are all my Lomography cameras, and I have some awesome pics from them but not without much frustration. The pink one was my first analogue camera (I mean after all the ones I used in my childhood!) and it’s a fisheye lens that I got my parents to get me from Urban Outfitters. It actually worked really well, and was pretty reliable. But I got a bit sick of the fish eye gimmick. The photos come out as circles in the middle of black rectangles (very technical language I know) which makes them look a bit rubbish imo. But I haven’t used it in ages so I should try again.
The two blue ones as Diana F+ cameras, I have had a handful of great shots from them when weird things happen- the point of Lomography I think. But most of the time its a waste of time, and money. The cameras don’t wind on properly so I destroy films having to open the back to check out what’s going on. It’s impossible to know how much to wind on the film after each shot so most frames overlap whether you want them to or not. And the cameras are sensitive to shaking and a lot of photos came out blurry because I couldn’t keep my hand still enough. They feel cheaply made and I wouldn’t really recommend them.
The camera on the left is the Actionsampler which takes 4 shots in quick succession. I took a roll of film which got stuck and came out of it’s film container, the film was entirely exposed to light and ruined so I don’t know the pictures would have come out. The black one is a display copy of the Konstruktor camera which you put together yourself. I understand it’s quite fiddly, but I didn’t make this one, and I’ve never tried to use it.
Moving on to my 110 film cameras. These are more 1980’s style. The Le Clic at the top is one I’ve used a lot and had some good results. 110 film is vert easy to use as you can just slot it into the camera, you can also pull it out part way through the roll and switch it for another one (swapping colour for black and white for example) and only lose 1 frame. But a lot of the stuff you buy online will be expired so a lot of my shots ended up with odd pink blotches. I have a roll of film from the Minolta 470 so we’ll see what that produces.
Below are my 5 digital cameras, I enjoy a good Lumix as you see. I’ve only ever had the compact point and shoot cameras, never fancy SLRs but I don’t really need anything fancy. The red one at the bottom is my current camera, although I find myself relying on my phone a lot more. The other 4 are broken and need to be thrown away!
Then I got all organisy and attached notes to all my cameras and rolls of films. I marked which cameras that have films in them, so I know which camera to pick up next to finish off that roll of film. I also marked which films were colour and which were back and white, which highlighted what film I needed to buy so I put a little order in.