Lomo LC-A+: Laurel Valley Village & Sugar Plantation

Another roll from a couple of weeks ago.

688891-R1-18-5, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

688891-R1-12-11, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

Amite must have manufactured a lot of farm equipment back in the day, I’ve seen a lot of junk with the town’s name on it–once on an episode of American Pickers.

688891-R1-03-20, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

688891-R1-06-17, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

688891-R1-01-23, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

688891-R1-00-24, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

688891-R1-02-21, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

I got my 110 cartridge film back from Dwayne’s last week and was pretty disappointed, the film is not fully advancing, resulting in a lot of half-assed double exposures. For some reason it seems to happen more with the B&W cartridges, which is a shame because it makes beautiful prints. I don’t think it’s the camera, when I open and close it with the door open, the little gear that advances the film turns properly. It almost feels like the cartridge is jammed in there too tightly, it’s very stiff when it’s loaded. I’m sure I can fix it if I fiddle with it, but it’s frustrating that I’ll have to spend $20 on buying film and getting it developed, and waiting 2 weeks for Dwayne’s to develop it and mail it back, before I even know if it worked. Anyone got any experience with 110 film and/or cameras?

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Rollei A110: in which I apparently know how to repair vintage cameras

Lomography announced a few weeks ago that they had started production on 110 cartridge film, which is exciting because it hasn’t been made since Fuji discontinued theirs in 2009. (But a lot of pro photo labs will still develop it.) The rumor was that they were going to announce soon after that they had designed a 110 camera to shoot it in. And they did, and it was a total sad trombone moment for me, because it’s a Fisheye camera. As I’ve said before when explaining why fisheyes don’t interest me: there are only so many photos of dogs’ noses than I can take. It just doesn’t do anything for me, okay?

So I started researching vintage 110 cameras. Most of them were junk, as the film was primarily aimed at people too stupid to figure out how to unload 35mm without exposing it. But a few camera companies made some quality 110 cameras, and probably the best one ever made was the A110 by Rollei. Or at least the earlier models; later on they produced some in Singapore with cheaper parts, and they also released the E110 for the more budget-minded consumer.

So I’m poking around on eBay last week, not really intending to buy anything, just getting a feel for the price. Which is averaging around $300, so maybe not. But then I find a seller with a cache of all kinds of non-working cameras, and he has an A110 for next to nothing because the film compartment won’t open. Not that I’m Ms. Fix-It or anything, but that seems like something that can be fixed? So I asked him if there was any battery corrosion (no) and was it stamped “Made in Germany” (yes), and I forked over considerably less than $300.

rollei a110, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

110 cameras are among the smallest ever made, which is why they’re fun. They make small prints, too. The A110 is small even for a 110, and some fans call it the “James Bond camera”. (And I just realized I used a Field Notes pen for scale. HI, I’M SARAH, AND I’M A HIPSTER.)

Anyway, long story less long: I got the camera, I fiddled with the release button and the film back for a couple of hours, it popped open (opening and closing it a few times loosened everything up and now it opens easily), I put in a battery, everything seems jake. I won’t know how it shoots until I run a cartridge through it and get it back from Dwayne’s Photo, but if the shutter works and the lens is intact, there’s no reason to think it won’t work just fine. Rollei makes superior products, there are Rollei cameras from the 1920s that are still in use.

I got a camera that’s currently retailing for $300 for less than $50, including the price of a 6V silver oxide battery and 3 film cartridges from Lomography. I’m pretty damn pleased with myself.

So that’s one more camera I can cross off my wish list. Other cameras still on it:

medium format Rolleiflex
Rollei 35
Kodak Instamatic
Polaroid SX-70
Fuji Natura Classica

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Lomographers of Acadiana: Harvest Festival in New Roads, LA (Pink Slim Dress)

This was pretty standard for a festival in south Louisiana: Cajun food and daiquiris, craft booths, rides for kids. But New Roads is a real pretty old town (founded 1720, one of the oldest towns in the Mississippi Valley), and it’s right on False River. That’s an oxbow lake that was cut off from the main channel of the Mississippi River by seasonal flooding in 1722. From the bank, it really does look like a river. There was a “duck tour” that went through the town and then out onto the water. It’s some kind of military surplus amphibious vehicle.

Anyway the festival was good for 4 rolls of film: 2 in the Yashica MG-1, and 1 each in the Lomo LC-A+ and Pink Slim Dress.


671269-R1-32-5A, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

St. Mary Catholic church


671269-R1-25-12A, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

Looking out on the river. Lake. Whatever.


671269-R1-16-21A, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.


671269-R1-11-26A, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.


671269-R1-02-35A, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.


671269-R1-07-30A, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

lomographers of acadiana: alligator festival

I was initially planning on having this meetup indoors somewhere, as it’s still pretty hot. But I saw this on my list of Louisiana festivals and decided I couldn’t miss it. Luling is in St. Charles parish and not too far a drive from New Orleans, so it’s a fairly big one.

If you’ve never had alligator meat and have a chance to try it, I recommend it. I’ve been eating it for years. It doesn’t taste like chicken, but rather more like a “meaty” fish like swordfish or tuna.

These photos were all shot in my Lomo LC-A+. One was a roll of Kodak Gold and one was a roll of slide film that I decided to have cross-processed. Most of the photos are of the cheesy carnival part of the fair, because that was the funnest part to photograph. But there were also craft booths and lots of food booths.


670068-R1-05-3, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.


670068-R1-13-11, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.


670068-R1-19-17, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.


670068-R1-26-24, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.


670068-R1-24-22, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.


670067-R1-12-27A, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.


670067-R1-24-15A, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.


670067-R1-19-20A, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

LC-A+: stranded boat


stranded boat 1, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

We had a cold front come in right after Lee. Now, a cold front in September, in south Louisiana, doesn’t actually make anything cold. It just makes it not so unbearably hot. Saturday was only about 80, so I got in the car and went looking for something interesting to photograph. I found this old boat in Coteau Holmes, a CDP in St. Martin parish. There’s something deeply unsettling about boats out of water.


stranded boat 9, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.


stranded boat 11, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.


stranded boat 16, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.


drawbridge light 4, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

LC-A+: grand isle, LA

Sunday the ‘rents and I drove to Grand Isle. It’s like Amity Island on the gulf, although presumably without all the great white shark attacks. I probably would have heard about that. By which I mean the population like, quintuples in the summer. Like most such beach towns, it’s kind of a honky-tonk and I think I would like it more in the off-season. There’s just something squalid about beaches when they’re packed with sunburned tourists eating junk food and toddlers with saggy diapers.

But if you’re ever there in the summer, get a dreamiscle flavor sno-ball (that’s what we call sno-cones in Louisiana, although it’s closer in texture to Hawaiian shave ice) at Megan’s Sno-Balls. TRUST ME.


Grand Isle 3, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

Dudes be fishin’. This guy was from Guatemala and lives in Baton Rouge. (Mom started talking to him, so he was of course forced to tell his life story.)


Grand Isle 10, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.


Grand Isle 6, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.


Grand Isle 7, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.


Grand Isle 8, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

I also shot a roll of slide, but I had to send that out to be developed at Dwayne’s.

lomographers of acadiana: chauvin, LA

We met a week early this month because Hope has something going on next week. We met at CoCo Marina, and I can personally vouch for their crawfish pies.

CoCo Marina 12, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

CoCo Marina 6, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

CoCo Marina 2, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

There was yet another cemetery on the itinerary–this one was a little different because it was built on an Indian burial mound. Which just seems like bad juju to me. Haven’t these Cajuns ever seen Poltergeist?

Elpege Picou Cemetery 1, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

Elpege Picou Cemetery 2, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

Elpege Picou Cemetery 7, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

Elpege Picou Cemetery 4, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

Elpege Picou Cemetery 2, originally uploaded by pinstripe_bindi.

But the highlight was the Kenny Hill Sculpture Garden. It’s a really fascinating piece of religious folk art that took a decade to construct and was abandoned by its maker. The Kohler Foundation rescued it–you know Kohler, they make kitchen and bathroom fixtures? One of the heirs of that fortune set up a foundation to rescue and restore folk art. They bought the property, cleaned up the statuary, then gave it to Nicholls State University.

if we didn’t think it was “worth it”, we wouldn’t be here

You know what I don’t get? Shit like this. Why? Why would you enter a group specifically for fans of a certain thing and basically go “Yeah hi, you’re all morons and this is bullshit.”? WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT

Look, there are things that I think are bullshit and I frequently say so on my own blog, where no one is forcing fans of that thing to be. But I would never go onto, say, a Twilight fan website and tell all the Twitards how stupid they are. It’s their own space, they aren’t hurting anyone, let them have their dumb obsession.

Besides which, this person doesn’t really seem to understand why a lot of people like the Fuji Instax and other instant cameras. It’s not about the instantaneousness at this point, and I would have thought that was pretty obvious. Digital is virtually instant: You see the image right away, and if you have a decent quality printer and photo paper, you can have a print within seconds.

I can’t speak for every fan out there, but I know I’m not the only person who likes instant photography because of its inherent flaws, not in spite of them. Every instant print is a never to be duplicated image. The flaws are real and unique, not phony purposefully-generated flaws that could be replicated ad infinitum on a computer.

It’s the same reason why I think $250 is a fair price to pay for a Lomo LC-A+. Yes, I could generate the same look with a digital camera and photo editing software. But I like that I don’t have as much control over analogue film. Photography nowadays is too perfect, too controlled. Giving up some of that control can be frustrating, but it can also be exhilarating.

decisions, decisions: lomo lc-a+ vs. blackbird, fly

For a while now I’ve been planning that my next new camera was going to be the Lomo LC-A+, the modern knock-off of the camera that basically gave rise to the concept of Lomography. I’ve wanted one for years, but at around $250, it’s one of the more expensive “toy” cameras. But look at the lush, dreamy, color-saturated images it takes and tell me it’s not worth every penny.

It also has the advantage of shooting 35mm. Don’t get me wrong, I adore my medium format cameras and don’t regret for an instant buying them. In fact, if the house were on fire and I could only save one camera, I would go for the Diana without any hesitation whatsoever. She was my introduction to Lomography and still my “first love”. But I would rather my next acquisition be a 35mm camera.

However, with my never-ending capacity for being distrtacted by shiny objects, I’m also considering the Blackbird, Fly by Superheadz — the awesomely-named Japanese toy camera makers who also made my Golden Half, a little treasure that I find myself using almost daily and getting even more enjoyment out of than I expected. It’s great for experiments in redscale or cross-processed slide film, because at 72 shots per roll, you can afford to take chances.

The Blackbird, Fly has the unique capacity of being a twin lens reflex camera that shoots 35mm. The images it shoots are perhaps not as idiosyncratic as the Lomo LC-A+, although they certainly aren’t ugly. I think of it as a sort of consolation  prize for not being able to afford a “real” TLR camera until I have a more robust income. Also as kind of like training wheels — my Duaflex and Brownie Hawkeye look like TLRs but are technically pseudo TLRs, because they have fixed focusing. And it has the advantage of being on sale at Urban Outfitters right now for $79.99 — it usually retails for around $120.

At the moment I am leaning more towards the Blackbird, Fly; but I haven’t totally made up my mind. So if you have pros or cons regarding either camera, I’m still open to receive them.

photos of various family members stuffing their faces

Mom was like “What a lovely photo of your mother dishing up some fat” when I took this. I wish that distracting 409 bottle wasn’t in the photo, but when you take candids, sometimes that happens. (p.s. East of the Rockies, Best Foods mayo becomes Hellmann’s. But it’s the same brand.)

If I had a dime for every photo I’ve taken of people eating crawfish, I wouldn’t have to worry about finding a job.

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