More often than not, inspiration can be found in the unusual pairing. The way a great restaurant might surprise you by combining two seemingly disparate food types. Or two seemingly incongruous musical artists can come together and knock out a killer album. And so it was this type of thinking that led me to buy a Lomo Minitar lens for my Leica M6, and digital Leica ME (the original ME was an M9 with a slightly different casing and no frame line preview switch). Having had an original Lomo LC-A back in the day I was curious what it might perform like on a Leica.
The Minitar is pancake flat and features a fairly wide angle of view. You have guides on the lens for your aperture setting, and distance in meters. But very different from a true Lomo – you can actually nail focus with your normal rangefinder prism and not be subject simply to the mental distance measurement and hope that the original LC-A forces. A limitation which much like one might say about the origin of their progeny – resulted in a lot of happy accidents.
Separately but not completely unrelated, like many of us, I find that with four small boys (see above reference), I shoot more than I would like with the camera we have on us – a phone. And so to counteract the lethargy of boring iPhone shots, I started to use Hipstamatic with the “Jolly Rainbow” film pack which brought an interesting purple hue to the photos I was taking. So you can imagine with this backdrop when Lomo launched the Lomochrome Purple film recently there was a convergence of the bizarre that suddenly came to light. I had to pull all of these things together and see what the result would be.
What you get with this combination feels to me like a very organic recreation of vintage colorized postcards. Which I find super interesting when paired with an ambiguously timed backdrop. Like Rockaway beach or an anachronistic tavern. I find the Lomochrome film ‘magic’ responds best when used against green. So taking this film anywhere in nature such as camping or on a hike is truly a fun and stunningly different way to create art. The Minitar-1 brings in the classic vignette that the LC-A had. It’s a great way to shake things up for a roll, and challenge yourself. Now more than ever we can use a little inspiration. So whatever M-mount (or extension) you might have – I highly suggest giving this combo a shot.
Thank you for reading. I have been experimenting with a number of films on a few different cameras. If you would like to see more of my work please feel free to check out my Flickr site here.