Tuesday, 11 August 2009

I spy with my little Fisheye

For some time now, whenever I'm out during the day I'm accompanied by a very strange device. It's bright orange and plastic and looks as if it has a very big lens...
It's my Fisheye camera.
When people first see it they immediately say "Cool, is that an underwater camera?" I have to inform them that no he is not suitable for underwater use and no it is also not a child's camera.

I then have to try and explain what it does. It would be much simpler if I just carried around a picture and said "Here look". Because this is what the fisheye produces...

The trick is to get as close to your subject as possible - the closer you get the more distorted the picture. However I've also learned you can get some pretty good scenic distance shots with him.

And when I say you have to get close you have to get right up to the person's nose and "Click!" - no need to have your arm out-stretched desperately trying to make sure you get your head in shot - with fisheye's crazily wide angled lens he'll get everything in for you.

Don't bother trying to line your shot up either - there's a view finder but it's mostly obscured by the lens - just point and click baby!

Through buying my Fisheye I became re-introduced to the delights of analogue photography. Remember that feeling when you went to pick up your photos from Boots and you didn't know what was going to be in the set? You couldn't remember what exactly you'd taken pictures of and couldn't wait to see how they'd turn out? You don't get that feeling anymore now that digital reigns supreme.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not dissing the digital. I love my camera, it goes everywhere with me and I am usually the official documenter of all nights out/trips away. I like that I can take a photo, upload it and share it within a couple of minutes. And let's not forget that any unflattering photos can be deleted within a second without anybody ever seeing your multiple chins.

But I love a bit of nostalgia and through my Fisheye I've become initiated into the world of Lomography.

Through Lomography I've learned that it's not about the perfect shot. It doesn't matter if things are a little blurred and out of focus or you didn't load your film properly or you exposed the film to sunlight. In fact they positively encourage these things - with the Rat Lab giving you tips on burning your film or soaking it in water before developing it - and selling expired film for you to try.

The point is to just enjoy taking photos, much as you should enjoy life. Who cares if the composition of your photo isn't perfect? Life isn't is it? And Lomography welcomes both good and bad photographers alike.

I would take millions more Fisheye photos but time and my bank balance won't allow it. I would also love to buy more of the cameras sold in the Lomography shop - the Supersampler is on my wish list. What the shop is great for is the amount of films they sell - who knew there was more than just your bog standard Kodak? My favourite at the moment is Agfa Vista 400, it really seems to make the colours 'pop'.

Right I'm off to sit and twiddle my thumbs and wait for the Fisheye photos from France to be developed.

PS. In case Santa is reading, I really want the Submarine so that I can take pictures underwater - how cool would that be?!

1 comment:

The Curious Cat said...

I love fisheye cameras - they are mega cool - never owned one myself though...you can make wicked cards out of the photos too! Never heard of Lomography but will have a read up on it! xxx