With their ephemeral and ethereal qualities, flowers have always been one of the most favored subjects by artists, especially for those with a keen appreciation of the natural world. Hungarian film photographer Attila (@papa-attila) is one of the many who take comfort and inspiration from his garden, as evident in his growing photo album foreverflower.
We asked him a few questions about his experimental photography and the many faces he has given these delicate and exquisite subjects.
Attila typically uses decades-old lenses, some of which already have defects, inevitably giving his photos their "vintage" feel.
The garden and the balcony are a big mess at the moment. But that's exactly why it's a good place to at least take pictures. My wife would say otherwise. It shows something else at dawn, in the morning at noon, in the evening, and at night. Ten thousand pop songs were created for three chords and nine notes, 1000 of which became hits.
What am I looking for in living or dying flowers? Like everyone, the mood. Which is sometimes gloomy, melancholic, sometimes funny, but mostly uplifting. They are like us. I never plan the photo shoot in advance, but there were times when I was on all fours. The theme is mood and intuition, these are more important than any technique.
His variety of cameras include a Fujica AX-1, Olympus Mju, Altissa Altissar Periscope and Zeiss Ikon Nettar. Meanwhile, some of the lenses in his arsenal are the Pancolar 50 mm f1.8, Helios 44-2 58 mm F2, Leitz Weltzar Maginon, Tamron Adaptall 28 mm F2.5 and Asahi Pentax Super-Takumar 50 mm f/1.4, to name a few. He also uses filters to achieve some of his whimsical results.
My youngest lens is 30 years old. The oldest is 70 years old. My point-and-shoot machines are also 20 years old. The TLR: Methuselah. Most of the lenses are scratched and foggy, so I feel free to experiment. I took what others didn't need because it looked bad. I have to lightly coat the scratch with water paint.
I use soft lenses, with soft filters, disturbing the melancholy of the white balance, usually underexposed. Sometimes the lens is half rolled down. Then saturation, contrast, level, gradation into one cauldron like in Macbeth.
When asked how he started with film photography, Attila said his first photos were taken at the age of eight, when he got intrigued about the film development process through a neighbor who was a professional photographer.
I went there many times. I was interested in the "alchemy." Once, he gave me an old box camera with film so that I could take pictures and he would develop them. I shot with the box, rolling around in the yard, in front of the flowers.
You can imagine what the pictures turned out to be. But after one month, the master appeared and said to my mother, “get this child some kind of camera, if not, then I will give him a used one." Mom bought me a new one: a Pajtás.
I don't know if it is possible to define Lomography. If so, then I was already a "Lomographer" at the age of eight, but everyone is who has already held a camera. Even the real professionals are at the same level. And this is the good thing: Lomography is inclusive, accepting, but you can also break the rules it sets.
In his teenage years Attila also photographed with the Certo KN 35 while he was exploring other hobbies and interests. He got fully reunited with photography a significant period later when a photographer didn’t show up to his daughter’s first birthday. He got a Nikon Coolpix and in less than a month learned the camera inside out. At a flea market he also bought an old lens he really liked, reigniting his passion for photography.
I didn't expect so much feedback, but I owe endless gratitude to those who have peeked at my album. Every album is a journey. Sometimes I feel that I am taking a walk together with the visitors to the site.
If my health allows, I want to take photos of more flowers, more Lomography. The plan is to test all Lomography films. Until then, I'm going through my old pictures. Oh, and shooting a movie. You'll see it when it's ready.
Many thanks to Attila for sharing his work with the community! You may view more by visiting his LomoHome.