disposable love

[2009-2013] ¢ back to snapshots.

a few years back, toy cameras became a trend, spearheaded by companies like Lomography and urban outfitters and dutifully praised on flickr and tumblr (and presumably any other “-er” site that drops the e). these shoddily made (yet somehow expensive) cameras became the self-contradictory “underground mainstream” answer to the crisp, overwrought, touched-up world of digital photos. this was right around the time instagram became popular, but smart phones weren’t yet the norm, so giving your images a nostalgic wear and tear the old-fashioned way was the most direct route. now you just apply a filter and voilá!

for all i know, toy cameras are still a trend, but perhaps their “authentic” pricetag still hinders most would-be amateur photographers. i like film, not only for its aesthetic, but it’s entire personality, so i don’t begrudge anyone that uses Lomography — i have only one broken fisheye myself. in fact, i think the company’s attitude and values are pretty OK, even tho i’ve considered the arguments against them, mostly regarding cost and the fine line of reselling sentimentality. it’s expensive to buy a brand new camera that was originally modeled 40 or more years ago, then find a place that will develop your photos. if any hobby becomes expensive, it becomes exclusive, which then is labeled “pretentious.”

art shouldn’t be pretentious. which is why i never understood why disposable cameras didn’t take off. maybe they did and i missed it. they’re certainly still used by young photographers looking to capture that faded, muted blueprint, but not nearly as much as other film cameras. i wonder why. disposables are relatively cheap, fairly available, more portable than some 35mm cameras and their attitude is fairly modern, considering how disposable everything is in the First World, including lovers. i’ve been using disposable cameras for several years now and i love them quite a lot. so without further ado (forgive the ruminative essay here — i swallowed too much adderall) here is my ode to the 27 exposures captured via a paper-plastic box.

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