It has been a while since our last Ask Your Guru feature. Hey, it has been tough looking for the best Community members to do the questioning and answering for this curious article of ours!
But we’re back this month! And we’re sure to bring you the most intriguing film photography questions ever asked in our Community. To welcome the first week of June, meet our featured Lomographers for our favorite Ask Your Guru!
It took him a year of discovering film photography and toying with his Supersampler until he decided to join our Community. More than two years after, Peer Scholz or more known as moodification already owns more than 20 film cameras, have shot almost 5,000 Lomographs, and have made more than a hundred Lomo acquaintances!
He is a doctor in a psychiatric hospital by day in which he shares “maybe it’s my interest in people that links my profession to my hobby. I really love the Community with its warm, friendly and helpful atmosphere all around the world.” He is also a vocalist and drummer for a funk band in which just like Lomography, is a great outlet for his creativity!
A graphic designer who owns a Diana Mini for his first Lomography camera, Jussi Lehkonen or jutei has been doing photography for almost a decade! He develops and scans his own negatives but admits that space and time is kind of difficult for him now.
Both men of Lomography, from Finland to Germany. Interesting one, eh? Let’s see how their questioning and answering went!
Jussi Lehkonen (JL): What is your favourite film and why?
Peer Scholz (PS): That’s an easy one! It is and ever will be Fuji Astia 100F film. When I started taking analogue pictures and buying my first rolls of medium format film, this great film was still easily available online. The Diana F+ was my first medium format camera and Fuji Astia was one of the first films I tried. The x-pro colors of this film with its nice pink and purple tones blew me away instantly. When I realized that it was going out of production, I started buying every single roll on eBay that I could get. So I still got a little supply in my fridge but I fret about the day I’m running short of my all time favourite.
JL: Do you like colourful cameras or is stylish black your thing?
PS: Tough decision! I love the full black of the LC-A or my Canon AE-1 because of its stylish understatement. I admire the classic combination of silver and black on my 1955 Rolleiflex that looks so precious. But I wouldn’t want to do without my red and white Holga either because it makes people smile every time I have it on me. Quite frankly… please don’t make me decide upon that. ;-)
JL: If you could decide, what kind of camera would be the next one from Lomography?
PS: If I really could choose I wouldn’t wish for a new one but a revision of the Belair X 6-12. The concept of this camera is so great with the interchangeable formats, the light-weight plastic body, the auto-exposure function and now the new 35mm back. But this camera is a demanding lady in real life and is very hard to handle. I don’t seem to get sharp pictures and the exposure is often incorrect. And a cable release socket would be more than useful to take full advantage of the B mode. Please LSI, could you do that for me?
And while we’re on it… Let’s have more film! I think it’s great that the LSI is bringing out new emulsions! I’m so looking forward to the Lomochrome purple! But I’m missing the X Tungsten so bad. I’d drool over a medium format version, too! Ok then, before I get carried away that’s probably enough wishes until Christmas.
JL: Lomography and traveling is a perfect match. I’ve been to Düsseldorf and Köln, what city would you recommend for me to visit in Germany?
PS: I totally agree with that, I just love taking my cameras to new places. So you’ve already seen Düsseldorf and Köln, two big cites in North Rhine Westphalia. Then I really have to recommend returning and visiting my hometown Essen and the Ruhr area. The Ruhr area – affectionately called “Ruhrpott” (like in “melting pot”) by its inhabitants – is famous for its industrial culture: Old mines, slag heaps, shaft towers, coking plants, and other buildings from the coal mining era were bit by bit turned into cultural places, museums, concert halls, and historic monuments. They create the backdrop for that special urban atmosphere around here. But what I like most of all apart from the architecture, are the people of this region. You couldn’t find more outspoken and warm-hearted people in Germany – on the other side: I grew up in the Ruhrpott, so what can I say? If you’ll ever come to Essen, let me know! You’d have a guide!
JL: If you had all the time and money, where would you go shooting? And what cameras would you take with you?
PS: Let me divide this in two parts: location and equipment. Location: Maybe you noticed that I love shooting architecture. For that, Brasilia in Brazil must be the place. The futuristic buildings by architect Oscar Niemeyer are just awesome! It must be a dream to walk this city just shooting away. But I also want to go to Australia again. My sister married a great Australian guy and we all went to Australia for the wedding in 2008. That was before I converted to analogue photography and so I only have digital pictures of this fantastic trip. I’d love to return to this beautiful continent and capture the amazing and colourful nature on film.
Equipment: This is always the toughest part in preparation of a trip! Normally, I don’t have much trouble making decisions, but this question always drives me mad. Especially when I go on vacation and can’t return for a quick change. So here you go: I always have one of my classic Lomo cameras with me (LC-A, LC-A+ or LC-Wide), I often take another 35mm camera with me like my Canon AE-1 for crisp and less “lo-fi” shots or the Horizon Perfekt if I want to go wiiiiiiiide. When it comes to medium format, I always need either my Holga or Diana F+. For “Lomo-like” pictures and one high-class camera from this group: Kiev Salyut-C, Pentacon Six TL (I own the normal 80mm lens and another 50mm wide angle lens), Rolleicord, Lubitel 166+, Rolleiflex. You can’t take more than one camera from this last group because apart from the Lubitel, every single one is so heavy that you end up with weak shoulders in the evening. I try to use all my cameras periodically because each one has its own style and flaws.
JL: One of your New Year’s Resolutions for this year was to take more portraits. If you could choose from all the people of the world, who would you like to photograph?
I really would like to take pictures of Jim Rakete, a German photographer who does fantastic portraits in black and white and also in colour. But that’s probably because I admire his work so much and he’s got an interesting face. If I would choose someone just for his face and charisma, I think I’d have to go with Keith Richards. He’s got one the most interesting and expressive faces I’ve ever seen. If wrinkles could talk, this face would buzz from voices. ;-)
JL: Have you built any accessories to your cameras by yourself or have done any modifications to your cameras?
PS: Although my alias coming from “modification” might suggest that (I just liked the play of words), I’m not much of a tinkerer. I’m sorry, no interesting answer on this one.
JL: What is your favourite album in your Lomohome? Why?
PS: At the moment I like the album of Our Wedding the best for obvious reasons. Although the pictures were not taken by me but our close friend artichekt , who did a fabulous job on this and allowed me to put this album in my LomoHome. At least I developed and scanned the film myself!
But as that doesn’t really count as a proper answer, here’s one of my favourite albums of my own pictures — On a Night Hunt for Lights.
I like that album so much because I was really surprised when I saw the results. For these night shots, the combination of my trusty Lubitel 166+ and Fujichrome RMS film was just perfect in my opinion. It’s very rare that I like every single shot from the album, but in this case that’s true. And it’s another recommendation on my hometown Essen and its great architecture.
That was mighty entertaining! From personal favourites, to tips on film and travel, thank you Jussi and Peer for this! Until the next Ask Your Guru! :)
Are you a curious Newcomer? Or maybe a LomoGuru who would like to share tips and tricks to our noobs? Then this is your time to be featured! Just drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org. Catch ya!