The Lomo Look

I forget who initially mentioned the concept to me, but I’ve bumped into the concept of Lomo cameras a few times now. As I understand it (which is to say, not completely!), they’re essentially cameras which produce images which are a bit less than perfect: they tend to have strong vignetting, excessive contrast, and so forth. But all of these imperfections combine to leave a fairly neat effect.

I stumbled across a few interesting tutorials, one on how to emulate the Lomo look in Photoshop, and another on introducing a glow effect in Photoshop.

As a bit of a perfectionist, I didn’t like the idea at first. I’ve always been careful to get everything just right: you want to eliminate vignetting, maximize the dynamic range, get contrast and saturation “right,” but not too high, and so on. But the post processing has a really charming look. “Timeless” might be a good way to describe them.


I found that vignetting can actually be a helpful effect, pulling your eyes into the center of the frame by ensuring that there’s nothing to look at on the edges. It has a neat side effect of making whatever’s in the center of the frame brighter:


I think it’s fair to say that it makes the photos look “old” in a way, too:


You can view my complete collection of Lomo-ized photos here… I think this collection may grow over time.

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