So I have been missing from the Lomography world for a while now. I am unsure what happened but something inside me broke, something went, something unseen, unheard and unknown silently left and analogue photography, film, cameras and Lomo was nothing more than a void.
Films gathered dust in forgotten parts of darkened basements, my cameras once an arsenal that followed me every where stared blankly at me from their display case seemingly indifferent to their demotion to museum pieces.
I turned to my Digital camera, shooting everything on that, gratifying myself with instant results, with control. It was free, it was easy, it was an affair. A brave new world of discovery. Playing with white balance and flirting with exposure rolling in the bed of photo-shop and discovering true control over an image, and it was glorious. It was the big love. The problem with big love, with any love is that at some point it changes. You realize that the little things you once found cute begin to annoy you, the charm goes stale, the one sided control creates an uneven relationship, that the bright shining brilliance of it all is, in fact, not so brilliant, bright or shiny. I felt Clinical. Sterile. Desaturated.
Just before Christmas I was asked to shoot an exhibition called “Digital Natives”. The term: “Digital Natives”, describes those born in the digital era, where internet, Ipods, mobile phones, HDTV, sat nav, and more technology than Starfleet could have dreamed, are not just a way of life but a part of life, as essential as a fridge or a cooker. The exhibition was fantastic, a cacophony of technology. Interactive displays beautifully designed bringing enjoyment to everyone. Everything lit up and demanded attention, touch screens were caressed and pawed and seemed to purr with delight. The ambient light that each display gave off made shooting it a treat. The guests explored and played and were totally in their world, in their element. And then there was me. A little older than the Digital Natives, who had been involved in the creation of this techno wonderland. I walked through them, round them, unnoticed, invisible because people chose not to see me, as I worked and took the pictures I needed. The more unnoticed I went the more I realized that I am not a digital native.
I didn’t belong. I took a moment to edit the images on the LCD screen, and I felt something. Ancient and brilliant, full of colour, of light. My analogue heart had not left. I had been shooting as if I were shooting with a Lomo camera, taking note of the details, shooting from the hip to capture something unseen, changing the white balance so the colours were slightly out, slightly x pro.
My analogue heart was beating again. (Man, I can be cheesy at times)