Wednesday, 3 August 2011

The Diana Camera!

Want to know a little more about the Diana camera? Feeling a little taken a back by all the different kinds and all their accessories? We'll here's a run-down to help you out a bit!



DIANA INTRO


In the 1960’s, a small company in Hong Kong was manufacturing these dirt-cheap plastic 120 cameras named the “Diana” which cost about $1 each to buy. These didn’t do very well and were discontinued in the 1970’s, but following their demise their popularity skyrocketed and they became the cult analog camera that all the lo-fi photographers wanted. The original Diana’s appeal was down to the images they produced – they were soft, dreamy and unpredictable with saturated colours, blurring and random contrast, making them highly demanded and sought after from the late 70’s onwards.

Realising this appeal, in 2007 Lomography, who had a great success with the reproduction of the soviet Lomo LCA cameras in the early 90’s, decided to produce a Diana replica camera – including all of the great features found in the original Diana – radiant colour, soft-focus - but also with pinhole and endless panorama features thrown in too signalling a rebirth of this much loved camera.




(Original 1960’s Diana)

 
DIANA  F+ (CLASSIC)

  • Takes 120 (also known as ‘medium format’ film) 
  • The lens is fully interchangeable meaning you can switch to use on of the other lomo lenses available - fisheye, macro lens, etc.
  • Is quite simple to use with 2 shutter speeds;
      • “N” which stands for “Normal” and is a speed of roughly 1/60th of a second. This setting is best for shooting in natural daylight (or if there is a flash attached to the camera) as it allows light into the photograph with out it being shaky.
      • “B” setting which stands for “Bulb”. This setting basically allows you to have the shutter open for as long as your finger is on the shutter release – it’s not timed! These are great for long or night-time exposures but you may need to use a tripod or cable release to keep the image steady so that it won’t blur depending on the exposure time. If used with a flash this can create some great effects too!
(Examples of long exposures on "B" setting)

  • You have full control of the advance lever – meaning that instead of being refined to advancing the film forward by one photo at a time, you can create interesting overlaps by advancing it by a quarter, a half  or even not at all - creating “double exposures” which is basically one photo overlapped on top of another.
(Examples of multiple and overlapping exposures)

  •  You can fully remove the lens to make it a simple “pinhole” camera to make great long exposures.
(Example of pinhole photos)

  • The camera has 4 aperture settings to adjust for sunlight, cloudiness, etc.
  • It comes with 3 different frame sizes you can use. Instead of having a set picture size the Diana lets you to take pictures that are 5.2x5.2cm (allowing for 12 shots on a standard 120 film), 4.2x4.2xm (16 shots) and even endless panorama – basically one big endless shot. To change these it’s a case of opening the camera and taking one out and putting one in so it can’t be done mid spool and needs to be done before the camera is loaded.

MINI DIANA

Half the size of the classic Diana, this camera is basically coined as its mini counterpart – but it has different features.

  • Mini Diana takes 35mm film (classic Diana takes 120)
  • Has 2x different frame sizes;
      • 24x24 (this “square” mode allows you to take up to 36 shots from one standard roll of 35mm film)
      • 24x17 (this “half-frame” mode lets you take up to 72 shots from one standard roll of 35mm)
(Example of Square frame and half frame)


  • The lens on the mini Diana is not removable and so there are no alternative lenses to play about with.
  • Like the Diana you can do multiple and long exposures.
  • Only has two aperture settings for sunny/cloudy and does not have a pinhole setting

DIANA MULTI PINHOLE OPERATOR

A pinhole camera is a simple camera without a lens and with a single small aperture – effectively a light-proof box with a small hole in one side. Light from a scene passes through this single point and projects an inverted image on the opposite side of the box. The human eye in bright light acts similarly, as do cameras using small apertures. Generally, the smaller the hole the sharper the image. Pinhole cameras can be made from everyday things such as cans and paper!


The Lomography pinhole camera is unlike any others as it allows you to choose between 1, 2 or 3 pinholes on one shot, creating pretty wild effects basically.
  • The camera takes 120 (medium format film), same as the classic Diana.
  • Like the Diana it has 3 frame sizes for 12 shots, 16 shots and endless panorama
  • Comes with 6 multi-coloured gel filters to add splashes of colour to your pinhole photos.

(Example of multi pinhole operator)


DIANA ACCESSORIES

SPLITZER


Basically, instead of taking one shot per frame the Splitzer slips on over your lens and allows you to split each one into halves and quarters letting you to create interesting photo compositions.  Some examples –
(Example of Slitzer photos)


CABLE RELEASE ADAPTER


This accessory is a pretty standard piece of kit for all cameras.  It allows you to do a couple of things – take self portraits without ‘the arm stretch’, as well as let you  be more in control of your shutter. Because of how light the Diana is, sometimes hitting the shutter can be quite unsteady and the camera flips a little… this is okay for quick exposures, but for med-long ones it can cause a blur. This basically minimises that, allowing you to shoot smoothly. This accessory comes with the Diana adapter, but if you remove that it can be used in all other cameras with a shutter release dock.

DIANA F+ FLASH


Despite being branded “Diana F+ Flash” this flash has a hot-shoe adapter which means you can use it on basically any other camera. (Loads of cameras, both analog and digital have a hot-shoe connection) meaning it’s a pretty appealing accessory. The great thing about this is its weight – it’s incredibly light, and is fully linked with the camera shutter so when you release it, it goes off automatically! It comes also with coloured gel filters to pop over the bulb letting you throw in some splashes of colour into those photos too!

RINGFLASH

Quite simply, the Ringflash completely surrounds your lens and throws a burst of perfectly even coloured light onto your subject – making for fantastic close-up portraits!

Plastic adapters are also included with the Ringflash – allowing you to use it on the following Lomography cameras – fisheye, fisheye 2, LC-A, LC-A+ , Diana and Holga (with hotshoe adapter)


(Examples of ringflash photos)

As well as all this great stuff we have loads more lomography stuff available at our online store - check it out NOW!

Katie




No comments: