Our Holiday LomoAmigo Cc-in-paris believes that “In photography, Lomographers always get the money shot!” Don’t we all agree?
Could you begin by telling us a little about yourself – Maybe an interesting fact people might not know about you?
My name is Carolina, I’m Portuguese, I live in Paris but I’m getting ready to move to New York. I was doing my PhD in genetics and cell biology (a true lab rat) in Paris and I’ve graduated this year (yeah!). I’m going to continue doing scientific research in New York, starting January 2012. I’m very excited and quite nervous about this move!!
How long have you been into Lomography and how did you discover it?
Looking back, I guess I’ve always loved cameras. As a kid I begged my parents for a camera. Instead of getting to use my dad’s Pentax ME super, I got a Kodak Pocket Instamatic, a small camera that uses 110 film. I was very trigger-happy. Sadly I’ve lost that camera. In my early 20s, I gathered my savings and bought a fancy Canon SLR, a camera that I love very very much although, every time I see for how much they are selling for on Ebay nowadays, I want to cry. Then, I must confess, I started dabbling with digital. Maybe it was the perfect boringness of digital, maybe it was that I was to busy with the whole PhD thing, the truth is that I lost a bit of interest in photography. Until….
I got a Diana F+ with hipster magazine subscription. This is quite ironic. I immediately fell in love with it and the beautiful colorful images it could produce. One failed film + very expensive lab experience later, and the Diana F+ returned to the shelf.
Summer 2010, I picked it up again and haven’t put it down ever since! After a trip to the lomoshop, getting some tips and the recommendation of a good, reasonably priced lab, I started shooting and getting happier with my photos. Last April, just after graduating, I decided to start a Lomohome … and it’s been quite an adventure ever since! I’ve met tons of other lomographers, either in real life or through a more virtual connection, have made many new friends and also learned a lot! One of the things I like the most in the community is its generosity. Most people are willing to help and give tips and you get a lot of free, super-valuable information.
What are your plans for the winter holidays?
Packing. Spending time with family and friends, saying goodbyes. Oh, and eating absurd amounts of Christmas sweets.
Any New Year’s resolutions for 2012?
Oh, the usual – drink less, sleep more, be more organized and run a marathon. Photography wise, I want to learn/master pinhole photography, start developing my own films and start to learn how to work in the darkroom.
If you could recommend one movie and one song to everyone, what would they be?
One movie and one song?!?!?! One?!? This is too hard! Ok, I’ll try. Since I can only pick one, I’ll go for heavyweights.
If I would have to recommend one movie, I suppose it would have to be Melancholia, by Lars von Trier. von Trier is definitively not an easy director, his movies are very tough (I almost walked out of the Antichrist) but they are always challenging. He makes you think, he’s not afraid to shock or insult and just pushes movies further. I had the privilege of seeing Melancholia at the world premier (at 8.30 am) during the Cannes film festival. The movie blew my mind away. Its photography is stunning, the music (Wagner) shakes the room, or at least it feels like the room is shaking and while the story is actually quite straightforward, a blessing for once, you spend days and days thinking about it. Oh, and the acting is incredible, memorable, just monumental. All this without saying that it’s actually a sci-fi movie about the planet Melancholia crashing into the Earth. It’s so sci-fi that I dare say it even has a reference to the famous binary sunset of Tatooine. Then von Trier gave the infamous press conference in the afternoon where he joked about being a Nazi except nobody got the joke and everyone was expecting von Trier to do something scandalous. We were all left wondering if we were wrong in loving the movie so much. I re-watched it again in Paris. I must stand by it. Whatever demons von Trier has, he is a brilliant director. This is, maybe not my favorite movie of the year, but it’s the one that has left the longest impression.
I spent most of 2010 overworking on my thesis so I didn’t get to listen to a lot of the new music of that year. During 2011 I’ve been listening mostly to albums from 2010. But instead of talking about how much I love Sufjan Stevens or the Arcade Fire, I’ll tell you about one 2011 album I really loved. The song that I want to recommend is ‘Sadness is a blessing’ by Lykke Li. Yes, I do realize that both the movie and the song seem to be about depression. And Stellan Skarsgård is in both Melancholia and in the clip for the song, which is also brilliant. Maybe there is a theme here. Sadness is part of life but its important not to be consumed by it. I like to experience how other people deal with it. ‘Sadness is a blessing’ is a beautiful song, I’m deeply moved by it. And Lykke Li is a super talented gal! I love her last album, ‘Wounded Rhymes’, all of it.
What’s your favorite analogue camera to shoot with?
What are you going to ask next, who do I love more, mom or dad? I’ll answer with the camera that I use the most, which is not the same thing. I always have my Lomo LC-A+ on me, its compact, small and reliable. I’ve done some of my best pictures with it. Couldn’t live without it.
What’s the next camera you’d like to get your hands on?
That’s easy. Horizon Perfekt.
What’s your favorite memory from this year?
Well, this has been a full year, many exciting things have happened. One of my favorite moments of the year is when I found out I had won the ‘Mingling with the Stars’ rumble and that I was going to the Cannes Film Festival (merci Lomo!!!). Cinema is one of my passions and every year I look forward to the Cannes film festival, when all the hot movies will be screened for the first time. That’s when you find out which movies you’re going to be talking about during most of the year. And when I found out that I was going, I was so excited that I was unable to concentrate at work during two days. I got to see some of the best movies of the year at the world premiere. It was almost a dream come true.
And now for the toughest question – What’s been your favorite photo from the past year?
Are you trying to kill me here?? One photo? All of my favorite photos of the year were taken by other photographers. But since I’m assuming you’re asking about a photo of mine, here it goes. There was one roll of film that really made me happy this year. I had this idea for doubles and it worked out really well, although not exactly how I had imagined.
In this photo from that album there is a girl amongst the rocks. But she is also on a giant flower, like a little fairy. I love how you can play with film. For these doubles I had imagined textures of flowers and plants mixing in the textures of the rocks and sea and the sand. I was not expecting Tinker Bell and that was a wonderful surprise!