Instant Gratification

Today a LomoInstant turned up in the HUB office. For the uninitiated, Lomography is an International photographic movement, methodology and brand which encouraged us to shoot spontaneously ‘from the hip’ long before smartphones took over our daily lives.

Founded around the Lomo Kompakt Automat, a curious Russian camera with a deadly lens, Lomo has grown considerably since I started following it 1998. With more cameras and a wider range of mechanics added, and no longer considered to be a novelty (the latest Instant range released in early 2018 attracting fashion photographers and high-fidelity professionals alike), my choice to revisit the collection I started in the late 90s has really started the cogs turning.

Originally intended to document the #bts and #wip at our new sister brand, AndSpecialGuests, I can’t help but revisit the ‘digilogue’ – the digital vs analogue argument – based on personal feelings around nostalgia, creativity and disposability.

But let’s be clear from the off, this is a discussion about the juxtaposition of the digital and analogue rather than a debate about which is better at what, and why. This is about a time, a place and a blending of old and new. 

HUB is a technology business. Great. We build websites and applications. Brilliant. I get it, you get it, we all get it. But if we stop for a minute and consider how we tell the best stories of some of more immersive projects, more often than not, they use a higher ‘volume’ of proven analogue or mechanical technology than digital.

So tell us Mike, why are you mentioning this after talking about an instant camera? 

My behaviour, and therein, the innate desire to share something aesthetically pleasing with the rest of our World, surprised me. Not that it was troubling, but that it was ok, not necessarily to be sneered at, and just another example of the old and new working in harmony. 

Taking the LomoInstant out of its box, I immediately took a picture of our new Godzilla toy on the Foldio360 also recently purchased, shook it as the song goes (but in this instance “…like a Fuji Instax picture”), let it develop, grabbed the iPhone and Instagrammed the hell out of it, regularly checking my phone for the next 15 minutes to see who had liked it.

I could spew a load of postmodern theory now about how the analogue output has now been recycled and digitised in to something new, something different, and perhaps something wistfully ironic, but somehow it doesn’t feel right any longer. This just happens. The old and the new work well together, informing and complementing one another to the point that the ultimate output, regardless of the process, can play a part in a wider story or simply form a story in itself such as this piece of writing.

So to the point. As designers, developers, storytellers and content editors, we can comfortably say that our past works well with our future. As entrepreneurs and business owners, the value in our business is not always achieved through the latest and greatest, but through the quality of the execution, the presentation and concept behind an interface, the stories we tell with our partners and clients, and the blending of the established experience of our team with the ever-changing tools of the Internet.