Lately you can't help but notice the popularity of "toy camera" settings on photo manipulation software, the Hipstamatic type apps for the iPhone, and multiple actions and settings for Photoshop that give you the vintage, unpredictable look of cheap, old film cameras. There's a reason for that. Those old photos look cool. They are playful and engaging. They aren't perfect like digital photos and that's part of their charm. Several months ago, I found myself occasionally playing around with digital photos in Aperture trying to make them look vintage. I'm one of those people who probably abused the Toy Camera setting in Aperture a few too many times. Sorry about that.
Fast forward a few months and I finally went out and purchased a super cheap Diana F+ plastic camera. I figured you can't get more "toy camera" than an actual cheapo toy-like camera.
The Diana is practically a toy. It's light as air and only has three aperture settings and three options for focusing. It takes 120 film and gives you 12 huge, square negatives per roll. I shot the first roll and I really love the way the pictures came out. I did black and white so I could develop them at home, but I'll do some color rolls next since the colors with the plastic lens are supposed to be super saturated and trippy.
Anyway, here are a few shots from the first roll.
Books above our bed
Sushi place on Pearl Street just up the block
Building next to ours on Water Street
Looking south on Pearl Street
Looking across Water Street towards the stairs for the Elevated Acre
Oh, and I got an "instant back" that I can install onto the back of the camera.
This instant back allows you to shoot Fuji instant film, which is like Polaroid, but smaller (think business card size). I'll shoot some of those this weekend.