21 June 2008

(Not so) Picture Perfect

Designed by T.M. Lee in 1982 for a Chinese audience, the Holga is a camera that, contrary to what one would be drawn to conclude, refuses to step down in a market saturation by cheap, high detail digital photography. This much loved camera was originally marketed as a cheap toy camera, using a medium format 120 film, which allowed for two size formats, three focus modes and an ostensibly useless aperture switch. The camera's weak design meant light leaks, blurring and vignetting were almost always apparent. However, despite any apparent limitations, it is the low fidelity of the photographs that actually makes it so popular.

Personally speaking, I love digital photography - it is accessible and provides a high quality. Exactly what an average user requires - great for capturing memories and important moments. However, for many the Holga allows an exploration and freedom somewhat lacking in the modern photographic world. I realise that I spend more time using photo-editing software, trying to achieve many of the effects that the Holga managed accidently. What attracts me so greatly is the fact, that in a way, the Holga manages to capture what was so wonderful about traditional photography. I love the fact that you can get a multitude of effects, from multiple exposures to delightful blurs and light leaks, all of which add to the character and delight of your images. Indeed the versatility and customisation potentials of the Holga are what make it so popular - you can modify it to take instant Polaroid images, change it to take 35mm film, change to any number of lenses including fisheye and pinpoint, and various other personal modifications to suit your wishes.

Looking around, it appears that the cheapest Holga's are to be found on eBay for a mere £20, with 120 film also stunningly cheap. The only possible problem I can think of is finding a good developer and how much that could potentially cost. Just wondering whether anyone has a Holga, or any thoughts regarding them!

Currently playing: Only Ashes - Something Corporate / The Coolest - Lupe Fiasco



  1. Inspirational and very wonderfully artistic photographs!! (=

    thanks for that great comment <3

  2. Those photos are amazing but i have my heart set on the Lomo Action Sampler camera and i only have so much money..

    Amazon has some pretty decent deals if you havent looked there yet.

  3. Holy crumbs! Those are amazing. Fantastic and incredibly inspirational.

    Thanks for the comment on my shorts, they are my fave :D

  4. Very eloquently written! I heart lupe fiasco too...

  5. love it so much!!

    and those pictures are very art!!

    hug and kisses

  6. great post and nice blog !!

  7. I'm a massive fan of Lomography and an expensive hobby!!!

  8. very artistic pictures....

  9. these photographs are soo rad!