My friend was looking at getting his sister a Lomography Camera for Christmas. He knew nothing about Lomo, and didn't want to spend more than £50, so I wrote him this short guide for buying Lomo for a beginner on a budget. (please forgive the poor grammar, it was sent on facebook)
Lomography do loads of different cameras.
Here’s all their stuff: http://uk.shop.lomography.com/cameras?limit=all
— The Diana F+:
The diana is definitely my favourite, you can change lenses on it and customise it and is only £35 without flash, which would be a good start. The only thing to be aware of is that it takes 120 format film, which some places don’t develop or it can be expensive to send off. You can get an adapter which allows the camera to take standard 35mm film which you can get developed anywhere, but that would be another £35 on top… And of course you would need a flash at some stage and that’s about £30 i think. I love it because you can buy different lenses, like a fisheye, and you can get a polaroid type attachment for it and different flashes. It’s fun and versatile. The costs do mount up, but if you think she would like the customization you could always just get her the body and let her collect the accessories? But you should think about whether she will want to spend out on the accessories or developing?
—The Diana Mini:
If you think she won’t want all the extras then they do a Diana mini which is £40 without flash, and takes normal 35mm film already (which is cheaper in the long run). It’s good for someone who wants to have a cool looking camera but maybe won’t want to spend loads on all the extras. You would need a flash for it at some stage though, but again she could always buy that herself, or get your parents to buy it? It also does this cool thing where you can split a frame of film in half and take 2 pictures on it, doubling the amount of photos on one roll to 70+ pictures. And I think you can still do the cool lomography effects like double exposures or panoramas. You can’t really customise this one as much, but if she won’t buy all the accessories anyway, this is a better camera for her.
They also do these fisheye cameras for £35 (or the upgraded fisheye2 for £60), which have a fixed fisheye lens. Personally I’m not too keen cause I like to take some normal pictures but with that camera every picture will have a fisheye effect. They take great pictures but I like the option to choose fisheye or normal. The cool thing about it though, is you can buy a case for it to take in the sea… maybe good for you when surfing?
— Other cameras:
They also do a collection of other funky cameras, which take a sequence of pictures on one frame, like the action sampler (£25) which takes 4 pictures one after the other to get a motion effect. Or the pop 9 (£35) which takes 9 of the same picture on one photo, like pop art. Or the coloursplash which has a rotating colour wheel inside the flash to make the flash different colours (cool but you get colour gels to put in the diana flash to give the same effect).
Hopefully that helps you out. My verdict: Diana if you think she’ll buy all the bits for it, or diana mini if she’s more casual about it as a hobby.
Let me know what you decide :)