LomoAmigo and CEO of Uptitude, Ermanno Zanella took us to high altitudes on the South Tyrolean peaks and told us about his experience shooting the Lomo'Instant Automat Glass Elbrus Edition. He took sharp mini-snapshots thanks to the camera's glass lens. The changing lights of the mountain in wintertime was also cleverly exploited for truly unique backlighting and vignetting effects!
Hi, Ermanno! Introduce yourself to our Lomographers!
My name is Ermanno, I am 31 years old, I come from Trentino Alto-Adige and I moved a few years ago to live in Bolzano to study. With my brand, Uptitude, I take old skis, old snowboards, unused or too old material /or because it has suffered a breakdown) and I transform it into prescription glasses or sunglasses. Obviously, retaining the original product's graphics, resulting in each piece being unique, you will never see a pair of completely identical glasses.
When and how did you start taking pictures? Did you already take snapshots?
So for me, it was the first experience with a snapshot. For example, I did videomaking and digital photography before, so it was a complete change in this case. Anyway, I found myself very acquainted with this gear. The images were very clear. You have to pay attention, however, when shooting in the mountains with such a camera: in fact, regarding the first 4-5 shots, I ruined them a bit, as you have to underexpose the photo. And in some contexts it is also smart to use the flash: if the subject is slightly backlit, better give it that flash shot, which does help. Then, the snow, being extremely white and being at least at 2000 meters, reflects the sun much more easily.
How did you work with Lomo’Instant Automat Glass Elbrus Edition? Do you confirm that it is suitable for high altitudes?
The glass lens gives an incredible definition to the shots. In addition, it is easily transportable and, in the case of snow clothing, also portable. It does not take up much space in the backpack. I am very happy with the results, the ones that I liked most of all were the results at the end of the day, as the light becomes particularly warm as we approach the sunset and the effect we get is incredible because it almost seems like an Instagram filter. But the motto here is #nofilter! These are among my favorite photos, always taken more or less towards the same time.
Was it difficult to organize an instant set on the snow? What advice do you have for those who want to make one?
I admit it, it was challenging as a set. If we had had a snowmobile it would have taken us half the time, little but safe: in fact, moving on the snow with all the equipment of the set and the different outfits for the models is difficult. I recommend bringing the essentials and moving often to the most panoramic locations: at these altitudes as never before, it is essential to exploit the light that is there and, sometimes, to follow it.
What will your next shooting be? Maybe one for the Uptitude spring/summer collection?
I would gladly go to Abruzzo, in particular to Punta Aderci: a beautiful natural reserve by the shore! There I could try an instant set again, maybe with products that we are recycling would be maritime objects this time! For now, I can't tell you more, but I'll keep you up to date!