The musings of a young Lomographer who went to pick up her pictures from the lab and stumbled upon something unexpected! Read along to discover the surprise that awaited her!
So you think you’re having a normal day. You check your mail. Walk your dog. Have lunch. Then you go to visit your partner in crime – your trusted lab. You pick up your pictures as usual. Wince in pain as usual as you pay your astronomic bill. Then, finally, you check out your results. Yes this is it! Colour, madness, beauty, friends, family! Another zesty roll of film captured. But then…wait a second. What’s this? An unfamiliar picture. Its upside down so you flip it right side up. You are entirely bamboozled.
Now I really don’t remember having taken this picture you think.
Oh boy, what shenanigans have I been up to again?! This surely is a mistake, someone else’s picture, accidentally slipped among your own. But no, after consulting your negative you are confronted by the undeniable truth, that strange picture sits there at the beginning of the roll right next to all the other images you had taken. You walk home distracted, wondering. And then you realize what has happened. Eureka! This picture was made at the Lomolito factory! What a rare specimen, what raw insight! Yes, it all makes sense! But then you wonder further still, and you cant help but ask yourself: Is the person who made this picture trying to reach out to someone?
Is this picture a cry for help and this disposable camera a 21st century style message in a bottle? You begin to panic. Years of bombardment by the media have made you more than aware of exploited labour.
Was this picture you hold in your hand made in a god damn sweatshop?! Your paranoia grips you and you jump straight to the conclusion that Lomography has sunk among the ranks of Nike and The Gap…your world is crushed. You feel your pulse racing and are outraged.
Later on, once you have returned from your brief lapse into paranoid assumption making, you use your reason to resolve that this shot was a mere mistake, a slip of the fallible mortal hand. Made accidentally by a safe and happy worker in the factory, and not the dramatic S.O.S. plead which you had over imaginatively created in your head. You ignore the strange disappointment you feel at not being able to be the chosen one, the hero who was destined to save those poor abused people. More than anything you are relieved that you will not have to boycott your favorite camera company…that would have been a really heartbreaking thing to do.
You cherish your lovely picture, the small and personal postcard from a land far away, your authentic candid. Your factory shot.