Hipstamatic Birthdays

I’ve been warned by songs and tv shows and people about this inevitable thing called “getting out of school and hitting real life”, eventually, everyone is busy and it becomes harder to get together with friends (cue #HIMYM feels), which is one of the reason I try to hold on to traditions and rituals (and I’m just a really sentimental person okay!!) Arthur is my high school friend and Warped Tour buddy. We took photography class together so I have always been snapping random photos of him. But after graduating high school, despite the fact that we both go to school in the city, I don’t see him much. His birthday is in early April, around the end of a school year, and we somehow always managed to grab a quick lunch to celebrate his birthday and how we made it through another year.

This all began in 2011 when we were walking around the OCADU area after lunch, I spotted a really awesome wall of graffiti and told Arthur to stand there for one of those cliched “stand against a wall of graffiti” photo. I took the photo on Hipstamatic because it was my favourite photo app at the time (now I’m on that VSCOCAM wagon like everybody else). It was also why I really wanted an iPhone in 2010. Because Hipstamatic’s lens and film combos are endless, I actually don’t really have a favourite and rely on the randomize option heavily. Also, one combo might work in one situation but not somewhere else, so it’s lot of hit-or-miss, just like with analogue photography, which is why I would keep shaking my phone, and take as many shots as I could and then make selections later (it annoys Arthur because he has to keep posing until I spot a satisfying one in which the lens + combo + pose are perfect).

Arthur’s birthday was this week, and here are the photos we took every April 7th over the last four years. What started off as a spontaneous portrait in the beginning grew to a personal project I hope to keep on doing. But I’m just glad we are still friends.

Also, Arthur is an illustrator—check out his stuff here.

2011 // Melodie lens + Ina’s 1969 film
2012 // Bettie XL lens + AO BW film
2013 // Americana lens + W40 film
2014 // Florence lens + Blanko Freedom 13 film

Here’s what happens in the Hipstamatic darkroom:



By Jessie Lau

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