The Silver Dreams of Plastic Cameras

Cheap Shots is an exhibition of photographic art created with cheap, plastic cameras, old cameras, pinhole cameras, and Polaroids. In an age of expensive, hi-tech equipment, these simple cameras offer a refreshing, lo-tech view of the world in our time. The work in this show was created by seventeen artists from the Michigan area who call themselves the Krappy Kamera Club. This will be their first public showing in Ann Arbor.

When: Cheap Shots will run from Friday, March 23rd to Friday, April 6th, 2007. The opening is March 23rd from 7:00pm to 10:00pm.

Where: Gallery 4, 212 Nickels Arcade, Ann Arbor, MI. On the second floor above Arcade Barbers.

The gallery will be open during the show Thursday and Friday from 3pm to 7pm, Saturday and Sunday from noon to 5pm, and by appointment. The show is free and open to the public.

A Lo-fi Manifesto

At this moment in history, the technical aspects of photography are receiving unprecedented attention. New cameras of amazing sophistication are breathlessly analyzed by photo magazines and websites. Photographers are draining their bank accounts attempting to keep up with equipment purchases.

But a few photographers are reacting against this conspicuous consumption and rampant technophillia.

The essence of photography - to place a particular frame around the world at a particular moment - remains unchanged. So some choose to pursue this act in the rawest possible way: By using the most obsolete, flawed, and lo-tech cameras available. Most were created as economy snapshot cameras, some even as toys. Many are decades old. All share very limited controls, and optics of questionable quality.

The toy camera aesthetic turns its back on sterile technical perfection. Instead it celebrates the messy unpredictability and dreamlike imagery that only a truly rotten camera can provide.

Seventeen local photographers have come together under the banner of Ann Arbor's "Krappy Kamera Club" to mount a group show of such work, the first of what is hoped will be a series of exhibits.

Feel free to contact me for more information.

Press enquiries to Michael Myers: or 734-665-9540.

Downloads: Flyer (.pdf), Flyer (.jpg), Press Release (.doc), Manifesto (.doc).


Throughout the Cheap Shots exhibition, the Ann Arbor Area Krappy Kamera Club will be holding a number of events at the gallery to introduce people to the wonderful world of lo-fi photography.

Diana and Holga: Art From Toys
Saturday 24th March

Since the late 1960s photographers have used the imperfect Diana, her sisters, and now the Holga to make serious and not so serious art. Come hear a little history of what was once an obscure corner of the photo world. Bill Bresler will show you the cameras, talk about their history, and show examples of toy camera work.

When: Saturday March 24th, 1-2pm
Where: Gallery 4, 212 Nickels Arcade, Ann Arbor, MI

Pinhole Workshop
Sunday 25th March

Club members Ross Orr and Matt Callow will explain how pinhole photography works and guide you through building your very own pinhole camera using little more than a few cheap, everyday items. The workshop is free and materials will be provided.

When: Sunday March 25th, 2pm 'til 5pm
Where: Gallery 4, 212 Nickels Arcade, Ann Arbor, MI

Email me if you'd like more information.

Dust Off Your Old Cameras and Get Busy!
Saturday 31st March

A talk by club member and vintage camera expert Mark O'Brien. He'll show examples of "orphaned" cameras, of the type many people find hidden away in their attics and basements (Argus, Brownies, old SLRs, etc.). He'll talk about how to get these forgotten gems up and running and out shooting film again. Afterwards he'll stick around to answer questions and offer one-to-one advice on the history and value of old cameras.

When: Saturday March 31st, 1-2pm
Where: Gallery 4, 212 Nickels Arcade, Ann Arbor, MI

More events will be posted as they're arranged. Watch this space!