the Lomo LC-A, a cheap Russian camera which the founders had discovered took strange, high-contrast photos that often featured vignetting (the focus goes soft and the image darkens around the edges).
Today Lomography is mainly used to describe the “art” of taking photos with a Lomographic camera, or any camera sold by the Lomographic Association (popular examples include the Fisheye, Lomo LC-A, and Holga). The term is also sometimes used to describe photography using any cheap or quirky cameras.
The Lomographic Society has come under very severe criticism for several points, the main one being that the company seems to sell cameras and photographic equipment for far, far more than it’s worth. Notable examples include the Lomo LC-A itself, which was around $30 USD when the original Lomographers first purchased it, yet sells for around $250, or the new Diana+, an updated version of a camera that originally sold for $1 that is currently sold by Lomography for $50. The Lomographic Society also seems to emphasize wild experimentation with (expensive) film, which some point out might be a ploy to get consumers to purchase more film from the Lomographic Society themselves.
Recently (as in early 2007-ish), the Urban Outfitters chain of stores have begun to stock Lomographic cameras, giving the brand a much larger audience to cavort around green pastures snapping photos willy-nilly and calling it art.
(As much as I hate the Lomographic Society for their sales practices, I must admit that I do regularly use my Lomo LC-A, as well as my Holga and my Diana+. I also buy film from them very often. Hey, it’s a mean business practice, but Lomography is fun as shit.)
Person 2: Cool, dude! You just had $10 burning a hole in your pocket, did you?
Person 1: What the fuck? That thing cost me $75!
Person 2: What a rip. Also, know that the film for those things is $5 a roll, not including development, which you’ll have to get done at a specialty camera store because drug stores don’t develop that kind of film.
Person 1: FUCK.
Person 2: That’s Lomography for you.
This “art formÃ¢ÂÂ also includes the spending of $60-70 on a poorly made camera, which probably has only a dollar or two worth of plastic in it. Although you could have bought a decent used 35mm SLR for the same amount of money.
The camera is so poorly made that online vendors, who are trying to sell this kind of junk, use cute fraises to put a positive twist on the cameras design flaws. Such cute fraises include…
“Soft Focus” – This basically means that the pictures look dull and blurry due to the poorly made plastic lens
“Intense Vignetting” – This means that it looks like you look the pictures through an empty tissue paper roll, again due to the poor lens.
“Unpredictable Light Leaks” – In other words, the camera is so poorly build that light gets in and ruins the film.
These pictures are often fuzzy, blurry, out of focus, dull, and poorly composed, and a general waste of film, time and money.
Friend 2 – “Sure”
Friend 2 – “Man! those pictures look like crap!”
Friend 1 – “That’s not crap!… it’s Lomography!”
someone_who_doesnt_have_a_life: oh, the blurriness really makes it deep. what is it?
band_you_havent_heard_of: it’s lomography!
Lomography is my hobby…