Lessons Learned from Lomography

(The old Amerada Hess Petroleum building. They packed up and moved to Houston in the 90’s. They left the building though. I like all the windows and the almost ceramic finish on the lower level exterior.)

Early last week before the big snow storm I grabbed my La Sardina Lomography analog camera and went for a walk around downtown. I’ve learned a few things about my cheap film cameras over the years. The first thing is that they work best on a bright sunny day. Duhh! is what you old time film photographers say, who would never leave digital. Sorry, is what I say, not everybody is as smart as you!

(This is the old YMCA on Denver Avenue. It is being repurposed into condos now. I was a member of the Y for about two weeks in the early 1990’s. The clientele was kind of rough. Subject of another post I think. This building is similar to the Amerada Hess building because of all the windows, and the ceramic like exterior on the first level. The Amerada Hess building is at the far right of the photograph.)

Second, you have to pay attention to the details because there is no “A” setting. I’ve learned on the Sardina that for single exposures I better have a 400 speed film or things will be dim. If I want to do double exposures I better use 200 film. 100 film, uh, no. Also, you have to manually focus and for goodness sake take the lens cap off. Film photography is expensive, make the most of it.

(The Tulsa County Courthouse. I’ll be visiting again to make my annual trip to pay our real estate taxes. It is across the street from the YMCA building. )

Third, you have to make yourself happy. Most people don’t understand why you are using film. Most of them happily abandoned film for digitial years ago and have never looked back and they don’t know what is wrong with you. (I’ll happily admit that a lot is wrong with me.) What of it. What can I say, I like the look and feel of the pics, I love seeing the grain of the film. Plus it is kind of like Christmas every time I pick up a roll of film. There is always some surprises and a few disappointments.


So far I have four Lomography film and three other film cameras. I hope to get another for Christmas. This one a pinhole camera. In other words no lens, just a pinhole. That’ll be fun. That’s getting down to basic.If I get it, as opposed to the lump of coal I deserve.

So that is what I’ve learned. Tuition has been kind of high. What have you learned lately?

6 thoughts on “Lessons Learned from Lomography

  1. Sylvia K

    I wish I could say that I’ve learned as much as you have, but I’m afraid that I can’t! Always love your posts and I do always learn something — that’s the good thing!! Keep it up, we’re both getting smarter, thanks to you!!

  2. DrillerAA09

    Without going all the way back to the pinhole, I do have an old Nikon n50 film camera that I haven’t used in years. I’ve been using digital, on some level, for around 10 years now, maybe a little longer. I really need to drag that old Nikon SLR (without the D)and shoot it again just for fun. I really like what you do with film.
    As for the buildings, I have a cousin that worked at Amarada Hess in the ’70’s. I was never a membre of the Y. Glad to see the building being repurposed. Have a great day Yogi.

  3. Beth Edwards

    i would love a more fun, different, or type of camera i could learn from … that would be awesome. we will see??! maybe one day. i hope. ( :

    fingers crossed for you on that new toy you are wishing for.

  4. Daryl

    so after the film is processed and printed you scan them so you can share them, right?

    i had a fabulous 35mm camera, a Minolta that loved morning light … i used slide film, it was cheaper

  5. Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti

    I loved my old Minolta film camera and had to be dragged, kicking and screaming, into taking digital photography years ago. As with many things, once one gets used to a new method, the old method seems to fall away. Good for you to keep up with taking film photos. They look fabulous!

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