Iraina and Sam are better known as The Smoking Guns. They have a regular radio show on Soho Radio, just around the corner from the Lomography Soho Store. We lent them the Lomo'Instant Automat and they documented their trip to sunny LA, just as the rains came down here in the UK.
Tell us a bit about yourself?
We're Iraina and Sam also known as The Smoking Guns, a London lady DJ duo and Radio Hosts spinning 60s soul, rhythm and blues, funk, ska and Latin boogaloo. We present weekly music and culture shows on Soho Radio where we play our favourite records, share lost soul treasures, and chat to mates from the worlds of music, film, photography, and art.
What were your first impressions of the Lomo'Instant Automat?
Wicked! We absolutely love it! As we're all about all things with a vintage feel, vibe, and aesthetic we love the look of the instants! Also, there's something beautifully tactile about them, like vinyl, you can touch and hold them. They're like relics from a pre-digital world - now, everything is immediate, easily adapted, redone or retouched, on screens, almost "unreal." We love imperfection; we love things just as they are or were in the moment. That's true of so many of the records we love- they were recorded live in the studio with the occasional instrument out of key, or an improvised vocal intro, complete with human errors and individual qualities. You feel like you've got a slice of a moment in the lives of their creators and there's something magic about that.
How did you get on shooting with the Lomo'Instant Automat?
Well admittedly, as we're not professional photographers, it took us a go or two to get a good grasp of things but all is relatively straightforward and easy to use. We're still working on mastering the double exposure feature. I reckon we've nailed a shot or two, but there's always progress to be made.
What did you choose to shoot?
People. Places. Moments. We took advantage of LA's almost-eternal sunshine, we took fun shots of each other hanging around, swimming, chilling, relaxing, as that's what much of our trip was all about. We also met up with loads of friends out there and wanted to include them in our little series so we brought the Lomo'Instant Automat with us and snuck a shot here and there. I reckon they won't mind!
What's coming up in 2017?
Well, the great British summer is upon us so festival season it is. We're really excited to be playing a load of festivals. We've got one of our favourites coming up this weekend, a beautiful boutique Americana and rhythm and blues festival called Red Rooster. We're headlining the Howlin' Woods tent on the Saturday nights, which we did last year, so we're envisioning some more swinging round the pillars!!! And it's great to play a festival where you know the people love the genres you do. Also, our mate the delightful Dean Chalkley is playing just before us. We all run a night together with the terrific Eddie Piller at Old Street Records, called "Soul Box"- so it will be fun to roll through with part of our little soul loving family intact. We're also doing some festival reporting for InStyle UK. So we're really excited about that! We've been loving doing our Soho Radio show so it's exciting to further stretch ourselves in the world of presenting and reporting all that good stuff. And of course, loads of DJ gigs so come along for a dance!
For more information visit the Smoking Guns website.