My Friend Grenoouille by Weechonghooi


Name, location, age & occupation:

Name, location, age & occupation:
Charlotte. Just Charlotte. There is a French proverb saying: “To live happy, live hidden”. So Charlotte should be enough to say a lot about me. For instance, all the people who were still thinking that I am a guy are fully aware now that, actually, I am not…
I have one foot in Switzerland, Basel, where I work, and another foot in France, in a village that is probably not on any decent map, where I sleep and try to enjoy what remains as free time in my busy life… I was born in the last century and if my calculations are good I should be 34. Oh my God! 34!!!! Already?! yuuuk!…

Occupation? hmmm… I’m working in a backoffice as a “Settlements Officer” for an international financial institution which I cannot name if I still want to be part of it… not exactly what I was dreaming about, but well… makes me earn my living, so I will not complain… I am also a Researcher in the field of Child Development, Human Relations and Gastronomy, i.e. a Mum…

How did you discover lomography, and what do you think about it?
My first meeting with Lomography was back in 1994, when I was a student. I was looking for a cheap 120 camera and found a dusty Lubitel hidden in its box on the shelves of a big multimedia shop. First the guy didn’t want to sell it to me, for it was no longer in his inventory and he could not find the price. And he looked like I had found a dead rat in his shop; he was more willing to put that “thing” in the bin rather than selling it. I finally got it for 45 FRF = peanuts!

But I really met Lomography in 2006. At that time I was having a friendly internet relationship with a psycho who was obsessed by the number “4”. I was googling the net in search of something “4-related” that could please him and I felt on a Supersampler’s shot. What a shock! In a few clicks I was soon registered at the LSI and waiting anxiously for my first order to be delivered.

How often do you take your lomo cameras out? And where?
I DO NOT WALK OUT WITHOUT MY LCA+. I once forgot it home and it has been the weirdest day of my life. I would have gone to work dressed with my pyjamas that could not have been worse. Even if I know I will not use it, I have to have it with me.
And everyday I select one or two other cam to accompany “us”. Generally, my Holga, my Horizon or my Diana.

Tell us what lomography inspires you the most?
It inspires me as much as a pacemaker would inspire a person having severe heart trouble.
Unplug Lomography and I am dead!
Stop producing analogue cameras or film and I am dead!

Does lomography give you any good or bad memories back in time?

What is your favorite lomo camera? and why?

I have to answer these two questions together. So far I only have good memories with lomography. I wish I have had an LCA when I was a child. It would be of a great assistance today to help me remember all the good old times. The LCA is such a sensorial camera. It seems to soak up all the beauty, all the magic, all the soul you have in front of you. My LCA is my soulcatcher. No other camera had such an impact on me and on the way I am now looking at the world around me. Looking at a photo taken with my LCA brings back everything from the moment it was made, like a big emotional wave. Though I am mainly doing black and white, all colours are jumping out of the shot, all noises, all perfumes, all tastes!…

No bad memories with Lomography. No. Just a regret. I loaded my first film in my LCA the day my father died. I wish I could have taken a picture of him with it. I wish I could have an image of all the people I loved so much and I miss so much that would have the powerful ability to bring back intense memories such as the LCA does. Now I am building memories with my cameras. Lomography allowed me to meet wonderful people, to make friends, to plan projects. It influences my life day by day, it helps me grow up and it strengthens my personality. I have learnt a lot thanks to Lomography and the people I’ve met here. It provides me with so many different windows on the world …

What’s the picture you took, that you think it gives your the most unexpected result, and you love it the most?

Pfiuuuu… ehhrr… no clue… tough one…
hmm… maybe my very first Holga shot… I can confess that I was really not expecting any result from such a disgraceful plastic camera. I have been punished for being so sceptical! That very first Holga shot I took of my daughter caused me much astonishment. I shall never again lack of respect for the marvellous Holga!

If lomography want you to invent a new/special lomo camera, how would be your idea?
It would look like a cuckoo clock. Pressing on the button would take a first shot and release a little bird out of the camera (like a jack-in-the-box), which would cause the shutter to open once again. The result would be a double-exposed portrait of people smiling and being surprised…

What lomo camera will you recommend to a new lomographer?
The LCA+-RL!!! The LCA-RL you know now why. The+ because of all the “+s”: the stunning Splitzer, the wide angle, and all the + goodies the LSI’s little fairies are preparing in their secret laboratory for my next xmas or bday!!!?!… aren’t they?! If this new lomographer has not enough money in his piggy bank, then I would recommend a Holga, a Diana, a Lubitel or a Supersampler. As a start. And then I would recommend him to find a job, robber a bank or his grand’ma, but buy an LCA+!!!

What does Grenoouille means?
Ha ha… « grenouille » in french, means « frog ». This nickname is following me since my childhood and has been given to me by a hell of different people who did not even know each others. I suppose it must fit me quite well… at least on the physical aspect one can say that I have as much charm as an amphibian… in the popular culture, frogs tend to be portrayed as ugly, clumsy, but with hidden talents… and ultimately their legs are absolutely delicious fried with butter and parsley!

Visit their lomohomes:



written by shhquiet on 2008-10-07 #news #interview #my-friend


  1. skyblueskin
    skyblueskin ·

    Beautiful shots and a great interview too. It's great to know others never leave their home without their LCA+ too. I didn't realise until a few weeks ago that I actually have to carry it around with me everywhere, I just subconciously do it. Like carrying my house keys. :0)

  2. superlighter
    superlighter ·

    what a beautiful person you are Charlotte! a true great interview!

  3. saviorjosh
    saviorjosh ·

    interesting questions and funny answers. love it! :)

  4. vicuna
    vicuna ·

    Cngratulations Hooi & Charlotte for this great interview! It was a real pleasure to read it! :)))

  5. mattcharnock
    mattcharnock ·

    i totally love these guys!

  6. milkie
    milkie ·

    A great interview and so wonderful shots! The cuckoo clock camera is a great idea, so funny :)))
    Vive Grenoouille!

  7. goldie
    goldie ·

    great interview, made me think, thanks...

  8. hanspan
    hanspan ·

    i love reading other peoples stories... makes me wonder where mine will go - if anywhere

  9. kylewis
    kylewis ·

    Wonderful interview thank you for sharing!

  10. weechonghooi
    weechonghooi ·

    i think charlotte is a creative camera inventor.. Haha.. she has this interview really interesting!

  11. grenoouille
    grenoouille ·

    Thank you guys!
    And a special little kiss for you Hooi!...

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