Analogue camera brand Lomography (or Lomo, for short) has fast been gaining popularity following the success of its first model – the Lomo LC-A+ – and subsequent Diana F+ and Diana Mini models, while the London shop has just celebrated its first anniversary. The Spinner 360 is the most recent addition to the brand’s arsenal of retro-styled cameras and, as the name suggests, is designed to take 360-degree panoramic images.
Unlike some models in the company’s range, which use relatively hard-to-find 120mm film, the Spinner uses conventional 35mm film that you can buy anywhere. For those of us that are used to digital snaps, loading camera film can seem slightly intimidating, but rest assured that the Spinner makes it absolutely child’s play. You simply pop the back open, lift up the rewind dial, put the film in, attach the spool to the sprocket and wind it a couple of times using the dial on the bottom.
Before shooting, you need to make sure that the aperture is switched to either the “cloudy” or “sunny” setting (depending how light the shooting conditions are). If you’re outside in the sun and using ISO 400 film then use the sunny setting, or if it’s cloudy then, yep, you’ve guessed it – use the cloudy setting. If you’re using ISO 100 or 200 or if you’re shooting inside (it’ll need to be a brightly lit room) then always use the cloudy setting. If you leave it on the rewind setting then you’ll end up with a blank roll of film and all of your photographic efforts will have been wasted.
There is a hotshoe on top of the camera but as there are no contact points, you won’t be able to use a conventional flash, but you can use a strobe flash or constant light source.
There’s a cool-looking 360-degree spirit level on top of the camera, featuring an image of a jumping dolphin (a Spinner is a type of Dolphin, if you hadn’t worked out the connection). This will help to you to line up your shot so that you get a complete panorama. The trick is to keep the camera steady, which may take a little bit of practice as the motion of pulling the cord out tends to jog the whole unit unless you’re careful. Or if you prefer, you can go off-piste and hold the camera at an angle if you want to experiment with your photos. Alternatively, if you want to guarantee a non-shaky picture, there’s a standard tripod mount on the base of the camera handle.
You can read the rest of the article here on Pocket-lint.com (originally published 05/10/10).