My camera collection

As Christmas and my birthday have just been I have been lucky enough to get a couple of new cameras and I think I have completed my collection. This is my “need” list of cameras rather than “would like”. There are still lots of cameras out there that I would love but I don’t actually need them. A Leica would be nice but I don’t really have a spare £1500 lying about!

So in order of when I got them, let me introduce you to the gang.

The classic Lomography LCA+ (Pictured is an original LCA) This is an awesome camera and arguably all you need. It has fixed focus points and has a great MX button to make double exposures easy. This kick started my love of analogue and was a wedding present to my wife and I. It is robust (I have dropped it a couple of times) and takes great images with its glass lens.

The next camera I got was the Lomography supersampler in black. I was the “lomohome of the day” on the lomography site so they gave me 50 piggie points to spend. Piggie points equate to pounds so I bought this little beauty. This camera is great fun to use and has a pull string to start capturing 4 images as one. There are two speeds and is ideal at capturing movement. Its really tough and an fit in your pocket. It has limited use but I have had great fun with it so deserves a place on my shelf.

The next camera I got was a lubitel 166b. I had recently won a competition and had again been given a number of piggie points. @achocolatemoose tweeted that she had one of these bad boys spare and would anyone like to buy it. I offered her a straight swap for a Diana Mini (bought with my piggie points). She accepted and shipped the lubitel from Belgium. This is a 120 format camera and takes a lot of getting used to as it doesn’t have any light meters and there is nothing automatic about it. I love this camera although it is bulky and because it is old (1980) it does have a personality of being difficult.

My next edition was a 1967 Zenit E. I got this camera whilst out shopping for halloween costumes. I went into a fabric shop with a wife and as she was browsing this Russian was smiling at me from a shelf. After a quick chat with the owners (who thought I was weird for wanting it) I purchased it for £5. An absolute bargain. This camera is great and takes amazing photos but the all mechanical action and heavy metal body make it as effective a weapon as a camera.

The next camera was a birthday gift from the in laws and what a gift it is too! A Zorki 4 from 1956. This camera I have yet to use but have spent a long time reading about it online. The lens is incredible and KMZ sold alot of these cameras for 17 years. It is basically a poor Russian mans Leica. I can’t wait to learn how to use this. It oozes analogue.

Last but not least is my new Olympus OM1 from 1972. I was given some Birthday money so decided to buy this camera. Although I had the Zenit for an SLR it is not a typical SLR with all of the crazy cool features and easy to get hold of lens’s. The OM1 range was basically the very first of the truely professional SLRs. The OM range went on to produce a lot of cameras from 1 to 10 I believe. As years went on they added more and more electronics and made it more automatic. The OM1 is truely manual and has a neat feature of a light meter needle that doesn’t even need batteries. This is such a good camera and I can’t wait to use it to see what it can do. The whole OM range is great and made very well but the OM1 is special as it was unique and kick started a massive revolution of SLRs.

Thats it, thats the gang, my homies. I have the LCA for great shoot from the hip shots. The supersampler for pure fun. The Lubitel for arty shots that require time. The Zenit for that bit of Russian SLR goodness. The Zorki for range finder shooting with a lens anyone would desire and the OM1 for anything I need. Bring on 2012.

I will just mention too the awesome birthday pressie my wife got me. An Epson V500 the best of all negative scanners. I have never been able to scan my own negs and have relied upon the lab. Now I have even more control over my developing. What a great present and I didn’t even ask for it!

What I love about this collection is that all it has cost me is £5 (The Zenit) They have all been gifts or won or swapped.

Shoreham Cement Works Shoot

I have never tried an actual modeling shoot and fancied giving a go.

I had also just been introduced to a website called 28 days later.  This website is for people to post shots of their urban exploring adventures. The idea is to gain access to forgotton about sites, run down and disused and take photos. The buildings are like a time capsule of the day they were shut.

So combining these two I picked an old cement works in Shoreham to be my back drop.

Looks cool hey? It was a creepy place to be. Next step I needed a model. I have a friend by the name of Newton, Newtdog, Ads, whatever you want to call him, the guy is a legend. He would be up for anything. This guy got naked in a beer tent at Glastonbury. Not that unusal no but it was Thursday lunch time, bands had not started and most people weren’t even there yet. He is a legend and can often be seen working the pubs wearing a “Me and my tiny penis are going raving” Tee shirt.

So we set off to Shoreham and when we arrived we were greated with a reminder of just how creepy this place can be. Readers meet crack fox. It made me think it wasn’t just cement they were making here.

After a quick morbid shot of crack fox we headed down to the main buildings.Unfortunately as it was mid day and on a busy road gaining access was pretty tricky. We walked up a path and saw some guy staring at us from his house. So we came back down and crossed the road to site no.2 which is not boarded up and is just as freeky.

It was all a bit strange and we were getting jumpy. I had decided to pick up some props for the shoot in the way of a gas mask. We were also going to basketball practice straight after the shoot so we were all wearing joggers and had a basketball as an extra prop.

This is me looking for the right backdrop and setting up my cameras. A Zenit E loaded with slide film and a Lubitel 166. I was still nervous of using the lubitel so wanted to make sure I knew what the light was doing and shadows were at a minimum.

Onto the shoot and the results. We were there for all of about 10 minutes before we hear sirens coming our way. It was a busy road so could of been for anyone but either way that led to a swift exit. Below are a couple of the shots but if you would like to see any more please visit my lomohome http://www.lomography.com/homes/welland/albums/1778745-cement-works

Im annoyed as the best shots came from the Zenit. The backdrop looks awesome, the problem is the obvious lack of focusing. That is lomography though! This camera is very old and you need to learn it and not trust it at the same time. What you see in the viewfinder may not be what you get. A lesson learned.

Zenit E

Im a fan of most analogue cameras, especially ones from USSR. I was out shopping for a halloween costume on Friday and we needed to get some fabric to complete the Little Dead Riding Hood costume. So we went to an old fabric shop run by an old guy and his even older mother.

Amongst all of the fabric was this little beauty. I had seen examples of its shots before and rated it highly for its SLR magic. This camera is bloody heavy and can serve as a weapon but the make is so good it doesn’t require batteries and has an awesome bulb setting for light paintings.

Check out the awesome hazyness this fantastic camera takes

Specifications

  • Film format: 135 (35mm)
  • Picture size: 24mm x 36mm
  • Lens: Industar-50-2 lens 50 mm f/3.5.
  • Shutter: Focal plane
  • Shutter speeds: B, 1/30-1/500
  • Viewfinder SLR
  • Exposure meter : Uncoupled selenium meter
  • Size: WxHxD 138x93x72mm
  • Weight: 800g (with lens)
  • Battery: Not needed
  • PC X and M sync, accessory shoe
  • Self-timer

Zenit E is a single-lens reflex camera, fitted with a built-in and uncoupled exposure meter and with a reflex mirror of instant return type The camera is supplied in two variants: with HELIOS-44-2 lens 58 mm f/2 and with INDUSTAR-50-2 lens 50 mm f/3.5.

The glass lense is exceptional quality. People may scoff at the look and weight of this aging relic of the USSR but its probably got a better lense then most modern digitals.

Can’t wait to start using it