The Discovery of the LOMO LC-A

As we all know, the future is analogue! From Moscow to Manila, London to Tokyo, Lomographers all over the world are forgetting all the rules and shooting from the hip – creating millions of wonderful analogue magic! But, let’s take a look at how it all began and find out how the discovery of one mysterious little snapshooter, triggered an international analogue revolution.

The Austrian Lomographers

It all began, way back in the spring of 1991. A group of bright-eyed Austrians from the Tyrol were studying and sharing an apartment in Vienna. That spring, they decided to take a trip to the newly-opened Czechoslovakia. Whilst visiting Prague, the capital of then-Czechoslovakia, they came across a strange and mysterious camera in an old-school camera store. The small black thing with the charming ‘click’ was quickly rushed back to their student flat in Vienna. After shooting with it, they were completely blown away by its oversaturated colours, its crisp sharpness and the interesting vignettes (the dark shadows and tunnel effect that it produces!).

An Analogue Revolution

They realised quickly, this was a camera with a very special character of its own. The LC-A-obsessed students began taking photos like crazy and getting them developed at the nearby supermarket. As the photos stacked up, more and more people would ask questions about this little Russian gem. “Where could they find one!?”

Lomograph taken with the LC-A by goldie

They quickly realised that this wasn’t just a special camera, this was a whole new way to take photos!
In the Summer of 1992, the Lomography Manifesto and the 10 Golden Rules were written, whilst are plucky young Lomographers carried out daring back-pack raids to Russia as demand for the LC-A increased. In 2005, with the spirit of Lomography in full-swing, production of the LOMO LC-A in St. Petersburg came to a halt. But, this was merely the start of a rebirth. In 2006 the LC-A+, with some added Chinese magic, was born!

Lomograph taken with the LC-A+ by satomi

Fast forward – you yourself are the next chapter in this crazy analogue story. Your photos and crazy snapshots are the present and the future of Lomography, carrying with it the myth and legend of the LC-A! The Lomographic Society continues to think up new cameras, with new Lomographic tricks up their sleeve. But ultimately, it’s you the Lomographer that carries the analogue spirit with you!

The Lomo LC-A: An Overview

The Lomo LC-A (Lomo Kompakt Automat) is a 35mm camera that was produced by LOMO PLC in St Petersburg, Russia.

It was originally conceived as an improved version of the Japanese Cosina CX-2 and to serve as an automatic camera for the Soviet masses. Although baring an uncanny physical resemblance, the LOMO LC-A, as our pioneering Lomographic heroes were to find out, had a very special character of its own.

The LC-A was invented by chief-engineer Mikhail Grigorievich Kholomyansky and his team and was first released in 1984. The camera is famous for its slightly oversaturated colours, crisp sharpness and perfect vignettes (the tunnel effect on its photos) that it produces as well as the smart zone focusing option and the extraordinary automatic exposure function. The camera chooses the correct aperture and exposure automatically by day and night as it is able long time expose and image up to one minute.

Lomograph taken with the LC-A by reinertlee

Want to know the full story? Check out the Library!
Get yourself your very own LC-A+!
Check out the stunning LOMO LC-A Big Book!

Want to learn more about the analogue future? Head to the Microsite, take part in our Shoot Your Prophecy Competition and download the Future is Analogue posters!

written by devoncaulfield on 2011-03-11 #lifestyle #lc-a-lc-a-history-lomo-discovery-discovering-finding-history

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