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LomoAmigo: Emrah Altınok from Turkey

Our LomoAmigo Emrah Altınok says: "Analogue photography is indispensable; because it is genuine, it is exciting, it is open to surprises." We had a pleasant conversation with photographer, poet and musician Emrah Altınok, about the adventures of his photo shoot with Diana F +.

Just last month, Altınok’s exhibition, entitled ‘The Lack,’ decorated the walls of our store. He dived into the magic of medium format photography with Diana F+ Chamonix. He also shot with Lubitel 166+ for this exhibition. Read on and get to know the versatile artist more closely!

Tell us about yourself.

Since childhood I have been interested in different branches of fine arts. I was singing and playing mandolin at home and at school, I was looking at poetry anthologies for hours at home in front of the library; I was looking forward to drawing lessons for learning better ways to draw. Music and poetry has always been in my life. My interest in drawing made me an architecture student; I graduated from Urban Political Economy. I am working as an assistant professor in the Department of Architecture at İstanbul Bilgi University and I’m teaching undergraduate and master courses. Graphic design quite attracts me. I love designing posters and book covers. Lately I designed the book covers (poetry series) for 160 km. publishing house. I have been making music with my friends for about 10 years, we are making psychedelic / post-rock style improvisational recording and we are performing at concerts. Our group name is “Etreh”. Our last concert was two years ago at Indigo. All of the band members gave themselves to business life, so now finding time to make music has become much more difficult; but we still are looking for a way to break this inertia. By the way I’ve been writing poems since the early 2000s. I have published three poetry books (in one of the books I used a pen-name). In 2005, my first book “Aradaki” (in between) had received Melih Cevdet Anday and Rıfat Ilgaz poetry awards. And my last book was published in 2010. You can still find three of the in bookstores. When it comes to photography, my relationship with it is a little more professional. Especially in the last 4-5 years, I’m taking portfolio photos for artists in a studio environment. Therefore, I can say that photography is a kind of second job for me. Before this I took portraits of more than 100 people for an international photo project for about 1,5 years. The name of this project was “Facity". Also I should mention that I use mostly analogue cameras for my personal / art photography works. Briefly, I’m actually a mortal who is always busy.

What attracts you to analogue photography?

All the cliches that come to mind. Noisy shutter sound, the combination of chemistry and mechanics, the impossibility of seeing the photos immediately, grain structure, and all soiled parts of the work… Analogue photography is indispensable; because it is genuine, it is exciting, it is open to surprises.

What was the first photo that you ever took?

My father had a 110 format camera. I vaguely remember the camera. I think it was one of metallic body Agfamatic’s or maybe Olympus. I don’t remember I managed to take a photo but the camera had a unique smell, I loved it.

Do you use other analogue stuff such as notebooks and vinyl?

I love listening to music from my record player. We have a Dual HS 151. We’re taking care of it.

You took photos with Diana F+. How would you describe it in two words?

Sometimes I call it: “You tramp.”

Which photo do you like the most?

I don’t compare, they all have a different story.

Do you have new projects?

I think for a project; the name will be “yer çekimi” (Gravity). Until now I am still postponing the project, because it requires a specific production; but I’m planning to implement it at the moment I have the opportunity this summer. “Yer çekimi” (Gravity) is a portrait project as “Facity”. I will work with children, adults and elders in this project. I won’t mention the details here, let’s keep it a surprise.

Where would you want to be and what would you like to do right now?

I would like to be asleep on a beach in Assos.

Which popular culture icon would you like to photograph the most?

Lars von Trier!

The Diana F+ is a new twist on the ‘60s classic cult camera. Famous for its dreamy and soft-focused images, the Diana F+ is now packed with extra features such as panorama and pinhole capabilities. Available in our Online Shop.

written by merveengin and translated by merveengin

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The original version of this article is written in: Türkçe.