There are a handful of wonderful things that I managed to score whilst in New York – an “I <;3 NY" shirt, a collection of vintage postcards and a pile of adorable toast-shaped coasters. But, the best purchase (and the second most expensive item I bought) that equals with my new Marc by Marc Jacobs handbag, is this beauty – the LOMO LC-A+.
On just our second day in the Big Apple, we took our first subway trip downtown (okay, so, it was still Midtown, but slightly more downtown than Broadway, at least) to B&H. When reading up on this camera-mega-store in my trusty Lonely Planet handbook, they called the shop “an experience it itself”. I thought they were exaggerating for the sake of explanatory spice, but my, was I wrong. This store is not just absolutely massive, it is also crowded and bustling with black-clad (and knowledgeable) Hasidic Jewish salesmen. When you select an item, it gets bucketed and cranked up and overhead on a crazily intricate conveyor system to the purchase area – where you must once again, queue. The entire process is all very reminiscent of cattle prodding – but more orderly, and possibly with less faeces involved.
For those who have been living in a pond, here’s the sell-spiel from the good people at Lomography.com –
Its legendary Minitar 1 lens gives you the same radiantly coloured and shadowy vignetted images as the original, while taking your Lomographic experience to soaring heights with cool new features like the multiple exposure switch, enhanced ASA settings and a cable- release- enabled button for long time exposures.
- Minitar 1 32/2.8 lens – yielding the same radiant colors, the knockout contrast, the edge vignetting, the powerful multi-coating and sometimes surprising results.
- Apertures: 2.8, 4, 5.6, 8, 11, 16
- Shutter speeds: 1/500 to unlimited (via auto-exposure)
- Multiple Exposure switch
- Expanded film ASA/ISO setting to 1600
- “Front grooves” which open up the world of image experimentation through LC-A+ customized accessories.
- Cable release and tripod thread
Just a pointer – the Lomography.com website has the LC-A+ retailing for $280.00 – I bought mine from B&H for a measly $229.99 + New York’s sales tax (+$20) – and includes: Lomo LC-A+ Camera, Cable Release, Lomographiere hardcover book, Two 35mm Film Rolls, 3 1.5V Batteries, Wrist Strap and the LOMO LC-A Book.
But okay, lets move away from all of these crazy specs and have a look at some pictures – my scanner is a bit loopy, so these images don’t exactly show off the true sharpness of the images – and for some strange reason, the second set that I developed in Oz came out FAR TOO SHARP. Ugh. Also, it’s important to note that the first roll of film was blown after the teeth of the loading spool munched up the notches in the film – the film didn’t progress and ALL of the images were lost. SUPER SAD PANDA. But, moving on from my innate depression, here are some highlights and I’ve put the rest in a handy album so your brains don’t explode from the image overload.
A) LIGHT POST: Bedecked with stickers in soho. B) LOVE ME: A building in lower China Town seeks appreciation and affection. C) SIGHTS WITH ASSISTANCE: From the heights of the Empire State Building. D) HOPE: Is found everywhere, at a small memorial/shrine at the foot of one of The High Line entrances on West 20th Street. E) ASTONISHING DISPLAYS OF LIGHT: And beauty in the Natural History Museum. F) POSTER BRIGHT: soho and noho, the home of lovely posters and hispter hangouts.