I’ve always wanted a panoramic camera but have never been able to afford a “real” one like a Widelux 1500. They can run you a couple thousand dollars, so I’ve always just dreamt from afar. Until recently that is, when Lomo introduced their Belair X 6-12 series of cameras.
I’m not a huge fan of plastic toy cameras, I have a Holga that I don’t mind using when I want to go really lo-fi, but other than that, I don’t have much use for them. While I like that they are promoting more film use, they’re also perpetuating the myth that analog photography is all about light leaks, cross-processing and crappy focus.
I went ahead and ordered the Belair X 6-12 City Slicker kit to see if I could get some half decent results with it. I’ll write up a more in-depth post about it sometime in the future, but I finally had time to run a roll of film through the camera fitted with the 58mm lens. This is St Paul’s Church in downtown Halifax.
It didn’t turn out too bad, the exposure was decent and the focus in the middle isn’t too bad either. You can really see the focus fall off at the edges though, a result of the “optics” of a plastic lens. I imagine the glass lenses Lomo sells would do a better job but they don’t have a glass 58mm, just a 90mm.
So I’ll keep playing with it. I’ll try the 90mm plastic lens next to see what kind of focus falloff that gets. Overall though, I think I might come to love this little camera.