Getting scared is great and all, and it looks even better on film! Next October, take your camera into your local haunted attraction, or to my favorite place: Knott’s Halloween Haunt!
My name is Levi and I’m a special effects artist, as well as a “Talent” (just a fancy word for monster) for Knott's Scary Farm, a Halloween event for Knott’s Berry Farm.
This, along with Lomography, is my passion and my life. It’s my favorite time of the year, when the fog machines kick on, nights grow longer, and the monsters come out to terrorize the living.
But how do you capture these creatures of the night on your camera? Well, you don’t. We’re trained to be quick and deadly, not to stop and get our pictures taken (however, if you’re sporting a nice Lomo LC-A, I’d stop for you).
Why, you ask? BECAUSE monsters don’t take pictures. A werewolf wouldn’t stop ripping somebody apart, just to pose with you!
However, I’ve found that some actors, if they notice, will appreciate the fact you are shooting on film, and understand the limitations. They won’t say,“Yeah, sure, lets take a picture,” but they will give you a decent growl for the go ahead.
Here’s an entire guide on how to shoot monsters (on FILM, not with a gun)!
Diana F+ with an Instant Back+:
Nothing’s better then instant gratification! There’s something about that little winding sound, followed by a little white rectangle, that’s so satisfying!
Here’s something I always used as a rule of thumb:
Is the monster with in arms reach? Keep the flash on, it’ll reach them just fine, specifically with the 800 ISO that Instax films have.
Is the monster 5 feet away? Put your Diana on BULB, take your flash off, and have someone fire the flash closer to the monster. Here, you’ll have a blurry background, yet your terrifying subject is frozen in one place. Be sure to warn the monster. There’s nothing worse then having someone fire a flash, and being blinded for the next 10 minutes.
Further than that? Don’t even bother.
Polaroid 600 cameras:
Polaroids don’t do well with quick monsters. Don’t even try it. However, if you time it right and flaunt off that vintage camera, you’ll get any monster’s attention. Make sure they’re at least 5 feet or closer. Also, be sure to warm up that film, or you’ll get the ‘blue haze’ effect.
Polaroid 210 Land Camera:
This was, by far, the hardest camera to work with out there. If you feel like fumbling around with a huge clunky camera, then go for it.
Unless in daylight, your subject needs to be in arms reach…and perfectly still. I only had two night photos come out, and I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone.
As for other cameras, I haven’t processed my rolls yet. However, when using the Colorsplash Flash, the lighting technique goes a little something like this:
ISO 100 Film @ 125/second: F8——F5.6——F4——N/A
ISO 200 Film @ 125/second: F11——F8——F5.6——F4
ISO 400 FIlm @ 250/second: F22——F16——F11——F8
Just a slight guide line for that nifty little contraption.
Also note, there’s two types of gels: Color correction, which gives the subject a nice, even tone and still lets through the subjects’ natural colors peek through; And the harsh, I’m-drenching-the-entire-photo-in-one-color gels. So watch out for that.
ALSO NOTE: Don’t touch the monsters. Seriously.
Until we meet again!
Enjoy my little stack of instant photos I made during my adventures!