Creatives and the Law

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Toy Cameras

Photo Courtesy of Lomography Website
I love to shoot with "toy" cameras aka lo-fi cameras with a plastic lens. Some people consider these cameras to be cheap and not worth the money spent on them. But, I disagree. There is a certain thrill in not knowing exactly what your picture will look like. Sometimes you're surprised with happy accidents and other times you have dismal results.

My favorite toy camera is my Diana Mini. It can fit in almost any bag and it is very light. I prefer to use Kodak Elite Chrome film (no longer in production but you can find it on eBay) that I then have "cross-processed." In case you don't know, cross processing involves the deliberate processing of film in a chemical solution intended for a different type of film. So, usually, color negative film uses C-41 chemicals for processing and slide film (like Kodak Elite Chrome) uses E-6 chemicals for processing.  When I have my Elite Chrome cross processed, my pictures have the most vibrant colors that simply cannot be replicated in any photo editing program.

If you're interested in experimenting with a toy camera, consider trying a Diana Mini. It is one of my favorites and it is always in my camera bag. The Diana Mini camera is produced by Lomography and is modeled after the 1960s original Diana camera. The Diana camera first appeared during the early 1960s as an inexpensive box camera and they originally sold for 50 cents per unit. It is a plastic-bodied box camera that uses 120 mm film and 35 mm film and is known for taking soft focus, impressionistic photographs. The Diana Mini camera is similar in that it also produces the same lo-fi results. The Diana Mini shoots 35 mm film and allows you to choose between half-frame and square frame shots. You can purchase the Diana Mini and Flash for $99 at the Lomography store or website.