One of our treasured community member, and LomoAmigo, Mafiosa, has been shooting with her first Lomography Camera for only three years now. However, she has truly proven her worth with her amazing Lomoskills, her passion for Lomography with her wide collection of our cameras, and her magnificent Lomohome! Meet this week’s LomoAmigo from Canada, Mafiosa!
Logography Username: mafiosa
Location: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Tell us about yourself. What do you do for a living? What are your interests?
By day, I am an environmental geophysicist. Being a scientist, I feel it is necessary to maintain a creative outlet. I’ve always been drawn to the 1950’s era. I love the styles (hair, clothes, make-up, cars, furniture, etc.) that emerged from that decade. Overall, I’m an old-school girl in a modern world. Hence my attraction to shooting with film.
Besides Lomography, my interests include movies and baking. I consider myself a pop-culture buff, and try to watch as many films as possible – including foreign and independant films. My favorite directors are Martin Scorsese and Quinten Tarantino. I love making all types of baked goods, and always try to come up with my own ideas so as to make them unique. I plan to combine my love of baking with my love of Lomography to make a recipe book (stay tuned).
How long have you been a Lomographer and how did you find out about the Community?
I got my first Lomography camera in 2009 (a white Diana sans flash). I first saw the Lomography cameras while on a trip to Las Vegas, and literally thought they were toys. I was fascinated by the photos on the packaging and could not believe that those types of photos could actually be created using those cameras. I didn’t have too much of a background in photography prior to that beyond the fact that I just liked taking photos and would occasionally take photos that other people thought were good. When I first bought the camera, I was really excited to try it. I had never heard of medium format or 120 film before, and did not realize it would be readily available at the nearest drug store. My first adventure in loading the film was quite comical – but I eventually figured it out and snapped some shots. The results were disastrous to say the least. Firstly, the lack of flash was a major downfall. Secondly, I’m pretty sure I had the camera set to accidental bulb. My initial excitement about the Diana camera was immediately deflated, and it sat collecting dust for months.
At one point, a friend recommended taking a workshop offered by a local shop. Taking that one hour course made a huge difference. I was immediately hooked and began experimenting with double exposures, colour gels, homemade masks, etc. It was at that point that I started scanning the Lomography site (after noticing the website advertised in one of the camera manuals) and admiring all of the popular photos. I was reluctant to sign up at first because I am always weary of internet sites that ask for personal information. But I couldn’t resist for too long and set up a LomoHome in 2010.
Please tell us about Analogue Alberta, and how it got started.
I was approached by weedos who wanted to plan an Alberta-wide Lomo Meet. The idea of forming an official group evolved from our discussions on how best to bring Alberta Lomographers together, send out communications, and plan events. weedos is a technology genius, so he set up the Analogue Alberta website (and came up with the name). Our first Analogue Alberta event was Shooting Sylvan Lake in late April. It was an awesome opportunity to meet weedos and yyyhorn, and all of the other people that were able to attend. We are hoping to continue with at least one event every year.
Where in Alberta is the best to take photos?
That is a good question. One that I do not yet know the answer to. Alberta is a large province, with varying lansdcapes that include the Canadian Rocky Mountain Range, the foothills, plains, etc. Since I live in Calgary, this is where I do most of my shooting. I’ve also done some shooting in the Mountains, in Edmonton, and in some towns – including the Analogue Alberta Shooting Sylvan Lake event. However, there are sooooooooooooo many other locations around the province I have yet to shoot – I’m hoping to do a few road trips this summer. The locations I plan to visit and shoot soon include the windmills of Pincher Creek, the badlands of Drumheller, the train bridge in Lethbridge, star trails in Kananaskis – I could go on. So although I have a ton of photos already that I really love from around Alberta, I feel like the best is yet to come – and if not the best, at least a few cool ones.
What is your favorite camera?
This one is really hard to answer. It’s like asking a parent to choose a favorite child. The camera I have used the most often over the past year is the Sprocket Rocket. Here are the reasons why I use it so frequently:
• It is durable so I can just toss it in my purse with all the rest of the junk and not have to worry too much about damaging it.
• It is practically fool proof – I only have to worry about checking a couple of settings before shooting.
• Film loading is super quick and easy.
• Um, exposed sprockets <3
• Endless panos baby!
However, my most treasured camera is my Lubitel 166+. The quality of photos taken with the Lubitel 166+ continues to amaze me. But, the manual settings and delicate features make this camera less practical for everyday use. I have to plan ahead to use this one.
Describe that camera in 5 words.
How about a Sprocket Rocket Haiku instead?:
Neon plastic shell
Endless panos and doubles
Splendid sprocket holes
What’s your favorite photo you took with that camera and why?
My favorite photo that I’ve taken with the Sprocket Rocket so far is probably this one:
I just really like the colours, tones, shadows, and vignetting on this photo. I also think it conjures a certain nostalgic mood. With the people on the ride not facing the lens, anyone can visualize themselves on it. It brings back memories of being young and at the fair on a warm, yet breezy summer evening.
If your photos shown here could have a soundtrack of three songs, what would they be?
Hmmmm. The first song that comes to mind is Summer Wind by Frank Sinatra:
The summer wind came blowin’ in
From across the sea
It lingered there to touch your hair
And walk with me
Like painted kites, those days and nights
They went flying by
The world was new beneath the blue
Maybe also Summertime in the LBC by the Dove Shack
Why do we do what we do
Hangin’ out late with no curfew
Instant Karma by John Lennon
And we all shine on
Like the moon, and the stars, and the sun
Please tell us your favorite type of film and why.
This changes on a daily basis as I continue to try different film/camera combinations. Right now, I’m really into Fuji Astia 100.
Your advice to future Lomographers:
The best advice that I can give is: if you shoot the things you love, you will love the things you shoot :)
The Sprocket Rocket is the first wide-angle camera dedicated entirely to sprockets. And with dual winding knobs for easy multiple exposures, there is no limit to your analogue creativity with this panoramic wonder. See the Sprocket Rocket in our Shop!