Order in the court! Our latest LomoAmigo Michael Alexander tells us what happens when the barrister wig comes off and when the fun while shooting the LOMO LC-A+ in Australia and beyond comes in!
Name: Michael Alexander
1. Tell the community a bit about yourself. What do you spend most of your time doing, the things you like or waiting to do the things you like?
By day, a barrister, practicing in Brisbane. By night…..a barrister, practicing in Brisbane. Long days in courts and reading endless documents but thankfully I get to work with some of my closest friends each day.
When the wig comes off, I love to explore my more creative and adventurous side. In recent years I have been taking photography along with me in my other hobbies, such as: trekking Kokoda, skiing, overseas holidays or a day boating with friends and hanging out at one of Australia’s beautiful beaches.
Hopefully 2010 will see less time in court and more time behind the cameras, both Lomography and completion of a number of documentary proposals currently underway.
2. How long have you been a Lomographer (or are you new to this whole thing)?
I bought my first lomo camera approximately two years ago, after experimenting with a friend’s Fisheye 2 at Bondi Beach in Sydney. My imagination was immediately captured by the different effects, colours and multiple layers that Lomography can capture (in a way that even my most hi-tech digital cameras can not.).
Without hurting the Fisheye’s feelings, the LC-A usually comes along with me anywhere I go (save for court and bathrooms!).
3. You also work with on making documentary films in the time you can. Analogue or digital and are there any parallels between your work with snapshots and your film work on documentaries?
Unfortunately recent pressures of my day job have held up some documentaries I had been working on, however I have some new exciting proposals presently under consideration with some local networks.
My documentary style reflects my snapshots in that I always try to let nature or people reveal themselves, instead of me forcing a situation to be something it’s not. In both snapshots and documentaries, true beauty and entertainment arise from reality and the imperfections that exist without scripts and manipulation.
4. Seems like you enjoy being behind a camera. While you are capturing beauty and entertainment as a result of your images, what is it about actually using and being behind a camera that you like best? Is the process something you find exciting as well?
As my friends and family will be quick to agree, I always have an opinion, and there is no better way to express a point of view than through images. I love capturing footage and images of the world as I see it and how it finds me.
There is nothing more satisfying than producing an image or video that transports people to where the scene was shot or how the subjects of the image felt at that point in time. Of course that’s particularly rewarding when it’s an image of a friend’s wedding, or first photos of parents with their children.
I have also never really grown up from that 12 year old boy who loves experimenting. Aside from being fascinated by technology, I love learning new techniques for capturing images and perspectives.
5. Describe the LC-A+ in five words.
Perfect flaws caught on film.
6. If your photos shown here could have a soundtrack of three songs, what would they be (song title & artist please).
- “Let me be” Xavier Rudd
- “One Summer” Darryl Braithwaite
- “Rambunctious Boy” John Fogerty
- “Walking on a dream” Empire of the Sun
- “Love Lost” The Temper Trap
7. If you could pack up right now and take off with your Lomo LC-A+ camera and a sack of film where would you be heading?
The LC-A is such a versatile camera that it suits so many different locations and environments. On a recent trip through Europe, I loved how the LC-A captured the dimensions of buildings and architecture in Paris and Oxford, the expansive landscape of the alps in Val D’Isere and the vibe and attitude of Londoners in the UK.
If I had to choose one place, however, it would be anywhere near my home in Queensland with sun, surf and sand. Noosa (on the Sunshine Coast) has a national park stretching along the coastline, a sandy beach and eclectic population. It always provides different images each time I go. Another favourite is to throw the LC-A in the krab, hold my breath and head underwater to the wrecks off Moreton Island.
8. Your advice to future Lomo LC-A+ shooters.
Focus on what you see through the lens and not what you think or hope the image will look like when developed. The real fun of using any of the analogue family and developing on film is the element of surprise and instinct that comes with shooting from the hip, without constantly reviewing a shot on a digital screen.
Remember to think about your ISO setting and focal length before each shot. Whilst unintentional flaws, such as lens flare and noise can be a welcome surprise, a poorly focused or completely over(under) exposed photo can lead to disappointment.
From time to time, take a roll of shots and then give the roll to a friend to see what he / she comes up with over the top.
Shoot for the moment and take risks, it’s only a roll of film!
9. What are you working on most these days (besides work)? Any projects coming up that we should know about?
I currently have plans to release a book of some of my favourite Lomo photos from around the world, and am also in discussion with some fellow Lomographers to collaborate on a book of images of an Australian Summer. I want to share the fun of Lomography with as many people as possible, and hopefully encourage them to grab a camera and try it out.
I have a short film which I am working on for entry in a competition later in the year, and will be focusing allot of energy on a documentary series with QPIX, a local member of Screen Development Australia. It’s a great concept and will be very entertaining and uniquely Australian (fingers crossed!)
Watch this space!