I love gadgets. Anything electronic or photo related is pretty much right up my alley. My husband says I have an addiction, but it’s really no worse than his golf “problem”. I admit that I can get excited over things that make the ordinary person raise an eyebrow. One perfect example is my recent toy purchase of a plastic Holga 135 camera.
Maybe my other photo geeks will immediately understand what I’m talking about, but most people really only know Holga as a style of picture on a phone app like Instagram or Vignette (called Toy Camera on that particular app). Photo apps are certainly popular these days, with many users favoring the retro-style filters and the look they give your average phone cam image. Well, let me introduce you to the original retro-style camera: the Holga.
The Holga was originally launched in China in the early 1980s. The plastic housing and simple mechanics of the camera made photography extremely inexpensive. Before long, the Holga and the dreamy, soft focus images that were produced caught the eye of artists and hobby photographers worldwide, and a movement began. Every Holga is unique. Images often have “light leaks” from loose spots in the plastic camera body. The Holga requires the photographer to do more than just point and click. In the age of digital photography, many of us have adopted a reliance on the delete button. Gone are the days of careful contemplation of exposure and composition. The Holga reawakens the forgotten art of photography.
I cannot wait to get my first roll developed. It’s been years since I used a film camera. I kind of feel like I have a new camera. (OK, maybe not, but it is a fun feeling to get back to basics!) I have snapped a few shots already, but I am definitely more deliberate in my exposures with the Holga, as film and processing is not cheap, and no one wants a roll full of under or overexposed frames!! I’m looking ahead and thinking of ways I can get really creative with my Holga. To show you how basic it really is, here’s a photo of my Holga. (Taken with my tablet, of course!)
Stay tuned for a post with some of my images from the first roll! I’ll be sharing some shooting techniques as well. If you’re interested in purchasing a Holga for yourself, they are widely available on Amazon. I purchased this one at Urban Outfitters.