I recently purchased an Olympus Pen EE-2 because of the half-frame format, but even before it arrived I had gotten caught up in the lomography world and had since purchased a Diana F+. I can't wait to start my Lomographic journey! The below explores how I ended up deciding on the Diana F+ out of all those possibilities.
I started a new job about three weeks ago. They weren’t overly prepared for my arrival so for a large part of the last two weeks my fingers have wandered through google.
I’ve always loved the idea of analogue photography and two weeks ago I stumbled across the Olympus Pen EE range and discovered the ‘half frame’ format. I fell in love with it immediately – Oh the possibilities…! I was outbid on the first Olympus Pen EE I found on TradeMe.com (New Zealand’s answer to eBay) but I soon found an Olympus Pen EE-2 in Australia. After fending off the competition it was soon winging it’s way to my eagerly anticipating hands!
In those long days spent frequently tracking the Pen’s journey from Australia, my idle hands (or fingers I guess) trawled through photos on Flickr and google for examples of arty things people have done using the half frame format. Somehow, and somewhere along the way, I stumbled across Lomography.com. Oh, the evils of too much spare time and the internet… After two weeks of devouring every photo, review and article on Lomography I was frustrated with the possible effects that could be achieved using other analogue cameras, but not the Olympus Pen EE-2 (e.g. multiple exposures – though I have since found out this IS possible with the Pen but you need to shoot an entire reel first, then reload it).
I soon craved another addition to my meagre anologue collection of one, and tackled the hard decision of which camera to buy – the Sprocket Rocket? The Holga 120 CFN? The Belair X 6-12 (which just looks so sexy)? The famous Diana F+?
I was overwhelmed with choice and apparently my eagerness to spend my yet-to-be-earned money! The below is how the Diana F+ beat out the competition, bearing in mind my limited knowledge and that I had already bought an Olympus Pen EE-2 so I was looking for something more versatile that I could experiment with:
Sprocket Rocket – I loved the idea of this camera. I loved the look of the film where you can see the sprockets and the panoramic vistas. And it’s cheap! But it seems that that’s all it does and I know I would soon get bored of its limited capability. I had also seen that it was possible to achieve the same effect using a modified medium-format camera. So I soon started looking at these types of cameras.
Belair X 6-12 – This sounds and looks like an awesome camera, but being a COMPLETE novice to lomography, I didn’t really want to go credit-card-happy on this fella just yet…
Holga 120 CFN – Clearly, a popular camera in the lomography community. However, after reading some reviews I found out that the Holga is definitely a light craving camera and could be difficult for novices to use. Though the light hungry device would not be a problem in New Zealand (where we have a enviable amount of extremely bright days), I didn’t want to be put off so early in my lomography journey. However, it had further potential for creativity with the option of choosing different colour flashes, but I just don’t think I would’ve used those and would’ve experimented in other ways. Finally, I was hoping to find a camera with interchangeable lenses to really vary what I could do with the one camera, which the Holga didn’t offer.
The Diana F+ – I eventually settled on the extremely popular Diana F+. I’ve never been one to follow the crowd, but how can the masses be wrong!? I was tempted by the sickeningly cheap Holga CFN 125 in Green (on sale for a mere US$47.50), but the Diana F+ had a feature I couldn’t pass up – interchangeable lenses. As I had already bought a 35mm which had a set focus and did not have this ability (the Pen), I wanted another camera that was far more versatile. The Diana F+ also offers a relatively cheap 35mm back (US$49.50) to afford me that “sprocket” effect that I had come to love from the photos I had seen here in Lomo Land.
I bought the Diana F+ Experimenter Bundle which included the Diana F+ camera (celebratory edition), 120mm 400 ISO film (Colour negative), 35mm 100 ISO film (colour negative) and the 35mm Diana + back so that I can really play around with that sprocket effect.
Being in New Zealand I don’t expect to receive them for a while but I’m hoping they arrive before my trip down to Wellington. The perfect little city to try out lomography!
I’ll put up pictures as soon as they’re scanned. I can’t wait!!!!