After waiting more than a year since Hipstamatic announced Benjamin Lowy’s work on a Photojournalism lens and film pack, it now has finally been released for the ‘First Friday of the Month.’
Front view of Full Metal Jacket camera case - screen shot
When I wrote about Benjamin Lowy’s Photojournalism combo in July of 2012, it was meant to be a ‘GoodPak,’ which would raise monies “to give back to the photojournalism community and so created the Hipstamatic Foundation for Photojournalism to be launched with the release of a new GoodPak.” Funds raised from the release of Photojournalism GoodPak will be applied to Hipstamatic Foundation for Photojournalism in order to educate and support the next generation of photo storytellers.
‘GoodPak’s’ were developed with the idea that the proceeds would go to charitable organisations. Previous released ‘GoodPaks’ were Dali Museum GoodPak, to aid the Dali Museum in St Petersburg and We Heart Boobies GoodPak to raise funds for National Breast Cancer Awareness month. However when Synthetic released Hipstamatic’s Journalism set, it was as a SnapPak.
Rear view of Full Metal Jacket camera case - screen shot
While I have not had a real chance to explore the Photojournalism SnapPak, I concur with Hipstamatic states that the Lowy lens “records every moment with fine detail . . .” when using the “professional lens.” The Blanko BL4 Film is one of five different versions of Blanko films. Hipstamatic states the Blanko BL4 film is “Designed for use in the field, this simple film will help you document any moment with precision.”
The accompanying camera case Full Metal Jacket is, in my opinion, one of the best designed Hipstamatic camera cases, besides the Long island FreePak, which comes with the Old Sport camera case with aged leather and bronze inlays, or the stainless steel case with art deco and leather grip Gangster Deco camera case.
I feel that apart from the Jane lens paired with the DC film, which I had been using for achieving photographs without any LoFi effects or other anomaly algorithms, the new additional should please many who want to use Hipstamatic for documentary work.
While the Photojournalism SnapPak did not come with a B/W film, there are a few already available when color is not desired. There is BlacKeys Extra Fine; BlacKeys SuperGrain and especially Rock BW-11 for nice blacks and whites and having a greater range of greys.
Screen shot of Hisptamatic’s ‘Featured CameraGear” section
I am sure there will be a number of LoFi enthusiast who will be disappointed with Benjamin Lowy’s Photojournalism SnapPak, because it makes the Hipstamatic camera no different then the iPhone’s native camera. Yet it was very important to Benjamin Lowy that the combo SnapPak was done right. He wanted to make sure that Hipstamatic would be seen by the purists in the photojournalism world as a viable application for documenting the news and that the Photojournalism SnapPak would remove any negativities associated with Hipstamatic by omitted Hipstamatic’s vignetting, spotting or other ‘weird’ appearance.
Only time will tell how successful the Photojournalism SnapPak will be with the Hipstamatic community. Personally, I am delighted that we now have a neutral lens and film combination for pure documentary photography. Over the next week we certainly will see how others mobile photographers will use the Lowy lens or the Blanko BL4 Film with other lens/films in their camera’s arsenal.