Lomography: 35mm Film & Plastic Toy Cameras

Monday, April 13, 2015

I grew quite fond of Lomography when I came to Doha, which is kind of ironic since there are only a few shops which offer film and film processing here. So while the rest of the world is comparing camera pixels, I was busy learning about film. There are different types of film but we will go into that on another post (soon).

Where to buy Cameras and Film in Qatar:

  • I bought my first two Lomography Cameras (I was only planning to buy one), the Diana Mini and the Fisheye2, from Khalifa Art Center, they used to have a shop in Al Bidda Park but there's an on-going renovation there so they had to close for a while. It is owned by Mr. Khalifa Al Obaidly, a film photography enthusiast, who was so kind to answer my queries regarding film. He also holds workshops on film processing (I haven't been to one yet, but I am planning to).
  • Also, there is the Katara Art Center Gift Shop where they sell Lomogrpahy. This is where I bought my Super Sampler and La Sardina.
  • I hear the gift shop of Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art also carries Lomography, but I haven't been there. 

Choosing FILM:

To choose your camera, first you have to choose which film you want to use. For a beginner like me, I suggest you go with the 35mm which is the widely popular film format. Besides its size and availability, I was also drawn to the fact that it shoots up to 36 frames. The 120 medium format has only 12 frames and I doubt that you can find a place to process them here in Doha. Most film enthusiasts I know who use 120 films process their own negatives. I should learn how to do that too.

Choosing a CAMERA:

Each Lomography camera has its own unique feature, I'd like to show you some of the features I love about my cameras.

I love that this little beauty can shoot up to 72 pictures. You can either shoot the 35mm in square format (you'd get 36 shots) or you could choose to shoot each frame in half-frames and multiply your pictures to two.
It also comes with color filters that you can put in your flash to give your pictures awesome colors.

Now who doesn't love the fisheye effect? I remember buying a fisheye filter for my digicam years back. The original Fisheye was a huge hit in the lomo world because it captures 170 degrees of the surrounding environment. So when the Fisheye no. 2 came out, they added a standard hot shoe and a viewfinder, it became widely popular.

I've always had a fascination with multi-lens cameras and this is my first one. The Super Sampler takes auto-shots in a single click of the button. You can choose from two available shutter speeds: 4 shots in 2 seconds and 4 shots in 0.2 seconds.
It does not need any batteries because it does not have a flash, so I suggest you use a film that can be used for all lighting conditions (800 ISO).
It's also very light-weight and handy, you can literally bring it anywhere.

My favorite feature of the La Sardina is its 22mm wide angle lens and the its bulb setting for long exposures (perfect for taking light painting photographs).
Some camera packages come with its own Fritz the Blitz flash, or you can buy it separately.

That's all for now. I'll post sample photos for each camera soon so you guys can see how fun shooting with film is.

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  1. oh yes! Film all the way :) Sweet Diana.

    Where do you get your films?

    1. Hi Marv! Yes, film is certainly alive and kicking!

      I used to get my films from Mr. Khalifa Al Obaidly, but since they renovated Al Bidda Park (where his shop used to be) I get them from Katara Art Center. They mostly have lomography films only. They're located at Building 5 at Katara.

    2. Diana is kind of my favorite. Haha.

  2. You have to teach me your tricks when we meet. :p

    1. That's the thing about lomo, no need for photography skills, let the camera do the tricks. That's what I love about it. I'll definitely share them with you when we see each other (which is really soon. Yes!)

  3. Yeah yeah, I know Mr. Khalifa :)

    I used buy films from him :D

    1. He was very helpful, especially when I was starting.

  4. Very interesting, I've never tried film cameras except for the standard types many decades ago. :) An avid carmera collector friend got herself a Diana mini and she was really happy with it.

    1. The Diana Mini and her big sister, Diana F+, is quite popular with lomographers. You should try taking photos in film.

  5. I used to have a diana+!!!! Long Live Film!!! <3

    1. Hi Jess! Diana is really a favorite. I haven't yet tried the 120 film, I'm still mastering the 35mm. I'm scared I might waste precious film.

  6. Hey Lou, I have a Holga 135BC and no clue where to develop the film after?! Any input on that would really be appreciated.

    1. Hi! You can have your film processed at any gulf colours branch. There's one near sofitel that does it in 2 hours. I'm not sure about the other branches, though. I tried in a different branch before and it took a day, because they also send it to gulf colours.

      It's around 10Qr to process the negatives and 1Qr each to print.

      Hope that helps! 😉

    2. Hey Lou, how about film processing in Qatar these days?

  7. angellewmv19@gmail.comMay 29, 2019 at 9:17 PM

    hello there im new to qatar and im new on lomography im really looking for the shop where i can buy the 35mm film roll. please let me know your suggestions. i hope this post and users are still active


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