Just a lomography question.

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Utradar New Member • Posts: 24
Just a lomography question.

So yeah, was wondering what lomography actually means and what would be the correct time to say that I am shooting lomography, I found some decent articles online but I do have a specific question in mind. So as far as I can understand you can see lomography as two types:

Lomography by using analog cameras and vintage leneses and

Lomography as a a photography style, that emphasizes taking soft looking pictures with bright colors.

And as someone who doesn't use analog cameras but uses a lot of vintage lenses, can I be technically called a lomography photographer? That was my mine question, this of course isn't anything important, I was just asking out of curiosity.

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justinwonnacott Senior Member • Posts: 1,080
Re: Just a lomography question.
2

Lomo is just a trademark that stands for cheap plastic photographic toys....that is it.

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Phil A Martin
Phil A Martin Senior Member • Posts: 2,623
Re: Just a lomography question.
3

justinwonnacott wrote:

Lomo is just a trademark that stands for cheap plastic photographic toys....that is it.

This is incorrect. Lomography comes from the name of a Soviet Compact camera, the LOMO LC-A which was derived from the Cosina CX-1.

Here is a fuller history of the camera and how it became a popular device in Europe and the West and spawned the Lomography Movement, dedicated to using lo-fi cameras in opposition to the exactitude and predictability of digital cameras.

https://www.lomography.com/about/history

Autonerd Senior Member • Posts: 1,281
Re: Just a lomography question.
3

Utradar wrote:

So yeah, was wondering what lomography actually means and what would be the correct time to say that I am shooting lomography

Lomography is pretty much a made-up word coined by the International Lomo Society and used by the Lomography company. If you've perused their site, you know that Lomography specializes in low-fi and "toy" cameras that produce less-than-perfect images through light leaks and/or imperfect plastic lenses, as well as funky films that often have random streaks of color.

Wikipedia redirects "Lomography" to "toy camera", which is a rather brilliant bit of marketing, if you ask me. Personally I don't think that should be the case, Lomography should redirect to a page about the company (which does not exist).

The truth is that low-fi cameras and photography are not new and predate both corporate entities listed above. I remember when Holgas got popular in the early 90s.  You had to load them in a darkroom then tape the crap out of them to avoid light leaks.

Back then we didn't have the word "lomography", we just called it "shooting cool pictures with strange crappy cameras".

Lomography by using analog cameras and vintage leneses and

Nope, that's just film photography. Pretty much all film camera lenses fit the vintage category nowadays!

Lomography as a a photography style, that emphasizes taking soft looking pictures with bright colors.

I would consider that just a creative choice.

And as someone who doesn't use analog cameras but uses a lot of vintage lenses, can I be technically called a lomography photographer?

I would say no, because I don't think Lomography extends to the digital world, and btw I believe they like the word "lomographer".

But why be part of the marketing effort? Shoot what you love, and call yourself a photographer and an artist.

Aaron

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FrancoD Forum Pro • Posts: 13,669
Re: Just a lomography question.
2

justinwonnacott wrote:

Lomo is just a trademark that stands for cheap plastic photographic toys....that is it.

Now it does but lomo did make a huge amount of cameras over many decades.

I think that their Smena, 16 versions from 1953 to 1991, is the best selling 35mm camera ever :

their Lubitel was also rather popular as an affordable 2 1/4

but they made the Almaz SLR too, 2 versions I think :

linux99 Senior Member • Posts: 2,075
.....call yourself a photographer and an artist.
1

Autonerd wrote:

But why be part of the marketing effort?Shoot what you love, and call yourself a photographer and an artist.

Aaron

This.

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alcelc
alcelc Forum Pro • Posts: 14,416
Re: Just a lomography question.

Generally it is referring to the sort of unothordoix imperfect result from low cost toy cameras.

Over time, some people like those imperfectness, becoming a style of shooting. On top of those imperfectness like soft, abnormal exposure, polarized colour, vignetting etc, AFAIK the unpredictable outcome is actually another major attractiveness of shooting with this sort of toys.

Since it is loved by some, in digital world there are filters been created to replicate the result.

Hence, it is no longer limited to analog film or digital, nor is independent on certain lens or camera.

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justinwonnacott Senior Member • Posts: 1,080
Re: Just a lomography question.

Thanks...idid not know this. They still make shoddy stuff though.

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FrancoD Forum Pro • Posts: 13,669
Re: Just a lomography question.

justinwonnacott wrote:

Thanks...idid not know this. They still make shoddy stuff though.

Obviously lomography fans don't share your opinion.

You will find that they think of it as fun, different , challenging and so on.

To wit, I find Bolliwood movies very silly indeed , however  hundreds of  millions of fans don't share my opinion.

tonybelding Senior Member • Posts: 1,065
Transparency
1

One major thing that’s different about lomography is that it accepts and celebrates artifacts of the photographic process.

In most photographic tradition, or conventional wisdom, the goal is to make images as transparent as possible, like looking at a scene through a picture window.  We’ve got a whole long list of possible defects that a photo could have that might detract from its transparancy:  over or under exposure, bad white balance, unnatural colors, vignetting, chromatic aberration, softness, flare, glare, rough bokeh, haphazard framing, noise or film grain, geometric distortion, etc, etc.

Lomography says these are not defects at all.  They’re just natural artifacts of the photographic process that add character, and we make no effort to avoid them.  Sometimes we introduce them deliberately, even.

So, are you doing lomography?  It’s all in the attitude.  If you are using a vintage film camera and lenses, and you are shooting nice, clean, professional looking images that might have appeared in The Complete Kodak Book Of Photography (which has held up well since the 1980s and is still worth studying, IMHO), then you are not doing Lomography.  If you are deliberately breaking every rule in the book, then you probably are a Lomographer!

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Mark Scott Abeln
Mark Scott Abeln Forum Pro • Posts: 16,165
lomography.com
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Hike Pics
Hike Pics Senior Member • Posts: 1,991
The Best Way To Understand Lomography Is....
1

.....just read through the "10 Golden Rules"...

https://www.lomography.com/about/the-ten-golden-rules

I am active on Lomography a good bit, and with both film and digital cameras. For film, I pretty much always use outdated (sometimes very) film and shoot with cheap plastic cameras on up to any of my nicer 35mm cameras.

Lomography actually sells "artistic" lenses for digital cameras, so they are very much aware that there is a digital presence there. The digital cameras I use for "digital lomography" are very specific and have their own strange and weird output without any post-processing artsy filter needs.

Personally, I carve my own planet in photographics.....shooting my own style that makes me happy and even challenges me. I don't mind to be called a photographer, lomographer, picture taker or whatever. Just don't call me late for supper!

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...Wes...

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sybersitizen Forum Pro • Posts: 18,596
Re: Just a lomography question.

Utradar wrote:

... as someone who doesn't use analog cameras but uses a lot of vintage lenses, can I be technically called a lomography photographer?

Maybe, but I see no reason why you would use the term.

DeathArrow Senior Member • Posts: 3,387
Re: Just a lomography question.
1

As long as your photos are unfocused, have camera shake, optical aberrations, low contrast, color aberrations and overall IQ is very poor, then I think you might be called a lomographer no matter what camera you use.

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embie
embie Senior Member • Posts: 2,205
Re: Good to know thanks !
3

Really that's good to know...

When in the future someone says to me that one of my pictures is crap I tell him/her that they don't know where they are talking about because...that is lomography.

LOL

eMBie

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Overrank Senior Member • Posts: 1,419
Re: Just a lomography question.
1

Utradar wrote:

So yeah, was wondering what lomography actually means and what would be the correct time to say that I am shooting lomography, I found some decent articles online but I do have a specific question in mind. So as far as I can understand you can see lomography as two types:

Lomography by using analog cameras and vintage leneses and

Lomography as a a photography style, that emphasizes taking soft looking pictures with bright colors.

And as someone who doesn't use analog cameras but uses a lot of vintage lenses, can I be technically called a lomography photographer? That was my mine question, this of course isn't anything important, I was just asking out of curiosity.

As others have said Lomography is a company, that sell some nice films e.g. Lomography 800 ASA is nice, relatively cheap and fast, Lomochrome Metropolis is a fairly new film that’s had positive reviews and has a bleach bypass effect.  Lomography also sell cameras, mostly “cheap” plastic cameras, although they also do Instax cameras with possibly better lenses than the Fuji Instax.  Lomography is also an artistic movement (see the ten rules elsewhere ).

You can pick any of these - I predominantly use film cameras and use some Lomography  film, but I wouldn’t consider myself a “lomographer”.  Lomography as a movement does get a lot of stick but in keeping things relevant for new photographers it’s probably had a positive effect on film photography.  Digital photography could do with some equivalent to move people from their phones to cameras.  Digital cameras lack a USP over phones for the majority of phone users - whereas film is completely novel.

linux99 Senior Member • Posts: 2,075
The real positive about Lomography..
2

For me the real positive about the whole Lomography movement was the idea of shooting with low-fi cameras and realising that the fun and spontaneity is as important as the precision.

It made me think in quite a different way about my photography - a good thing.

These were shot with a Smena on Ilford XP2 400.

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embie
embie Senior Member • Posts: 2,205
Re: The real positive about Lomography..
2

linux99 wrote:

For me the real positive about the whole Lomography movement was the idea of shooting with low-fi cameras and realising that the fun and spontaneity is as important as the precision.

It made me think in quite a different way about my photography - a good thing.

These were shot with a Smena on Ilford XP2 400.

Wel, well, well...Lately I saw that this is the same result that nowadays people are trying to achieve with their expensive high tech cameras and then be hailed for it, LOL.

eMBie

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Overrank Senior Member • Posts: 1,419
Re: The real positive about Lomography..
1

linux99 wrote:

For me the real positive about the whole Lomography movement was the idea of shooting with low-fi cameras and realising that the fun and spontaneity is as important as the precision.

It made me think in quite a different way about my photography - a good thing.

These were shot with a Smena on Ilford XP2 400.

I know this will sound a bit of a film geek, but was the XP2 pushed ? I’ve always found the grain structure on XP2 to be smoother (almost non existent if you over expose it a stop or two)

linux99 Senior Member • Posts: 2,075
Re: The real positive about Lomography..

Overrank wrote:

I know this will sound a bit of a film geek, but was the XP2 pushed ? I’ve always found the grain structure on XP2 to be smoother (almost non existent if you over expose it a stop or two)

Sounds right.

I was rating it at 1600 at time I think.

Here are a couple where I shot it as described on the box. You're right - very smooth.

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