Holga toy camera

Discussion in 'Medium Format' started by mindfu, Nov 19, 1998.

  1. I've just recently been looking into the Holga toy camera. It's 15
    bucks mail-order, and looks like it might be a fun introduction to
    medium format. I was wondering if anyone has any experiences or
    recommendations regarding the Holga or similar cameras, or just words
    in general for an absolute beginner to this format.

    <p>

    thanks,
    j
     
  2. There's a whole toy camera presence on the web.

    <p>

    start with...

    <p>

    http://ns1.inet.net/~smahoney/index.html

    <p>

    Looks like fun.
    tse-sung
     
  3. Hi Jim,
    Another good spot on the web is...
    http://www.concom.com/~winters/toy_home.htm

    <p>

    I got one from Freestyle, it is cool, very basic but intersting
    results.

    <p>

    Happy Shooting
    Boe ;^]
     
  4. It's also useful for pinhole work. Saw off everything down to the
    body, mount your pinhole and go to it. The advantage of this over a
    hand made box is the viewfinder. There's no tripod mount but one can
    be epoxied on.
     
  5. JiM:

    <p>

    The Holga is a toy camera and the picture quality will not be very good. There are other ways to get into MF on a budget. The Seagull can be had for $149.95 at the calumet site,

    http://www.calumetphoto.com

    <p>

    For a comprehensive run dowm on MF cameras from $200 and up see;

    <p>

    http://www.smu.edu/~rmonagha/mf/gindex.html

    <p>

    Danny Gonzales has prepared a rather exhaustive writeup on MF systems, many of which he has personally used. Good reading!
     
  6. Correction-The seagull is $139.95 on the Calumet site
     
  7. s_p

    s_p

    I once bought a Diana at a rummage sale for a buck. I put a roll
    of film in it but never printed any of the pictures --- when I
    developed them I saw they were smeary, ugly, out of focus. I
    then went to a photo conference and every third college student
    had "haunting, evocative photos" made with the Diana. I sold my
    Diana to someone for 5 bucks which probably just about covered
    the initial cost, the cost of the film and developer I wasted.<p>
    $15.00 for a Holga does not seem like a lot of money, but if you
    want smeary, out of focus pictures can't you just put a filter
    with some vaseline on it and a vignetting lens hood on the camera
    you already own and get the same effect? My problem with the
    Diana negs were that there were almost no exposure contols (I
    think it had sun, sun behind a cloud and no sun to choose from).
    So you really had little or no control over neg density. So I
    was limited to printing 4 inch square if at all. The only
    control I had was where I pointed it. To judge by the fellow
    participants at the photo conference who had pointed their dianas
    at each other (clothed and naked), their family and pets (dogs
    are a popular subject of diana photography), their homes, their
    parent's living room furniture, suburban shopping malls, etc.,
    they already had most subjects just about covered.<p>
    I'm not claiming that interesting work CAN'T be done with a diana
    (or a Holga), but if the most interesting thing about a
    photograph is that it was taken with a crappy camera, well, then
    it is not really a very interesting photograph. In this way,
    most plastic camera photography looks the same to me.<p>
    My advice (feel free to ignore it) is to do the Vaseline-filter
    thing first. If after three months or so you still love it, then
    buy the Holga. My insubstantiated assertion for the day is that
    90% of the Holgas sold are used once or twice and then end up
    languishing in the closet because the owner gets tired of them.
    I thought plastic camera pictures were cool when I saw them
    first, but it wore off fast.
     
  8. stefan wrote:

    I once bought a Diana at a rummage sale for a buck. I put a roll
    of film in it but never printed any of the pictures --- when I
    developed them I saw they were smeary, ugly, out of focus. I
    then went to a photo conference and every third college student
    had "haunting, evocative photos" made with the Diana.

    Haunting, at least! Their dope-smoking art professors told them to
    call the results evocative.

    I sold my
    Diana to someone for 5 bucks which probably just about covered
    the initial cost, the cost of the film and developer I wasted.<p>
    $15.00 for a Holga does not seem like a lot of money, but if you
    want smeary, out of focus pictures can't you just put a filter
    with some vaseline on it and a vignetting lens hood on the camera
    you already own and get the same effect?

    No, the "ethereal mystique" would be lost. [:)

    ...To judge by the fellow
    participants at the photo conference who had pointed their dianas
    at each other (clothed and naked), their family and pets (dogs
    are a popular subject of diana photography),

    Diana=naked dog, maybe?

    their homes, their
    parent's living room furniture, suburban shopping malls, etc.,
    they already had most subjects just about covered.<p>

    Except for their Dianas, which they shoulda covered with dirt....

    I'm not claiming that interesting work CAN'T be done with a diana
    (or a Holga), but if the most interesting thing about a
    photograph is that it was taken with a crappy camera, well, then
    it is not really a very interesting photograph. In this way,
    most plastic camera photography looks the same to me.<p>

    Well now, if you insist on maintaining a level-headed view based only
    on logic and an innate sense of right and wrong, your radical,
    mean-spirited, right-wing assumption may have some microscopically
    atomic-level merit, but the American public is surely tired of
    hearing about it by now! So let us concentrate our efforts to raise
    taxes enough so that not only every American citizen, but every person
    in the world, including all starving infants in the world, will be
    able to cast their collective vote by clicking their free, collective
    Diana-clone shutters in unison as a powerful expression of their
    distaste for the almost universal unaffordability of Rolleiflex
    cameras and accessories. CLICK!!

    Hoo-eee. Now let me try to soften your view, if not your optics, with
    this. Some 40 or so years ago, one of the two mainstream photo
    magazines, Pop or Modern, tested the mystique of exotic cameras versus
    raw talent. To each of six consenting top-notch professional
    photographers, they mailed an identical plastic box camera and several
    rolls of 120 or 620 b&w film. As I remember, there were no rules,
    except that all film was to be returned exposed but unprocessed.
    Several months later, the published results were to cry for. Each pro
    shooter intuitively recognized and worked within the limitations of
    his assigned equipment. Each, in his own way, saw opportunities rather
    than limitations, and each produced some absolutely stunning shots for
    the magazine.

    Yes, all the prints were both square and slightly fuzzy, and hardly
    worthy of 5x5 enlargements. Still, most were shots that you and I wish
    we had shot, and they conveyed the personality and talent of the
    shooter.

    Maybe I'm remembering all this with just a bit too much jaundice.
    Anyone else remember that magazine article? Better yet, do you have a
    copy you could scan and post for the betterment of us all?

    I thought plastic camera pictures were cool when I saw them
    first, but it wore off fast.

    Yup, I like sharp, too, but a plastic camera in good hands can provide
    good lessons in "seeing" for us all, don't you think? Maybe an annual
    outing with a 1/50 @ f/11, focus-free camera finished in "professional
    black" bakelite would inflict just enough humility to jerk our
    collective collars back into reality.

    Regards,

    Mel Brown
     
  9. s_p

    s_p

    exposure control = right wing politically<p>
    lack of exposure control = left wing politically<p>
    Excuse me.<p>
    Did I miss something?<p>
     
  10. "a fun introduction to MF"...Since there is nothing in common between this camera and "real" MF cameras(except for the film), it would not be an introduction at all. Besides, why do you need an introduction? The only difference IS the film. Sure, there are operational differences but still you get to set one aperture and one shutterspeed per exposure!
     
  11. Benefits of a Holga/Diana:
    No costly lens sets or accessories to buy. If it is stolen, you won't care. Cheaper by the dozen. If it is broken, you might not notice. Good practice for loading 120 film, as a conversation piece, and as a bookend.
    And you might actually enjoy the pictures you produce with it.
    Try it out in a studio setting as a soft lens with its own shutter and back. From all of the shots I've seen with this camera, nobody has actually tried to do a pro-quality shoot with it. They meander around aimlessly, shooting whatever for any reason. Big deal. Define the lens qualities, define your subject matter, go shoot. The camera is secondary to subject and lighting.
    Stefan:
    This camera has a plastic lens. What were you expecting? Something to rival a Rollei, a Hasselblad, a Leica? You paid a buck for it. You don't like the soft effect? Irrelevant. The tool does what the tool does. Discover the forte of the tool, and use it there.
     
  12. s_p

    s_p

    >>This camera has a plastic lens. What were you expecting? Something to rival a Rollei, a
    Hasselblad, a Leica? You paid a buck for it. You don't
    like the soft effect? Irrelevant. The tool
    does what the tool does. Discover the forte of the tool,
    and use it there.<p>
    I don't understand this philosophy that states that artistry and
    technical standards are worlds apart. Why, by these standards,
    is a blurry picture considered artistic and a sharp picture
    considered cold, hard, unfeeling or Nazi? Maybe I am just not
    hip enough for Holga but I have done all the image degradation
    stuff --- solarized prints, photo lithographs, Diana
    photography, pinhole photography, etc., etc., etc. In most
    cases, after a while I had to recognize these alternative
    processes for what they were as I used them---just gimmicks,
    really. One of the things I love about photographs is that they
    are a way of storing huge amounts of visual info in an easily
    shared form. After a while the soft focus, the lack of exposure
    controls, etc., of the Holga/Diana just become a gimmick, blurs
    and murkiness to hide the fact that all too often the plastic
    camera photographer him/herself really has nothing to say. Is
    that the plastic camera's fault? No. But if you are a little
    bored with your photography and decide to use a plastic camera
    to 'spice things up' I think you are in serious trouble. <p>The
    original poster asked>> if anyone has any experiences or
    recommendations
    regarding the Holga or similar cameras, or just words in general
    for an absolute beginner to this format.<< By this format he
    meant the medium format. I second the above contribution where
    someone said that the only thing a Holga had in common with
    other medium format cameras is the film size and that a 35mm
    camera with aperture and shutter speed controls will be a better
    learning instrument. Most people seem to go from 35mm to 6x6
    because they want more image quality. This increase in image
    quality is apparent when you make your first enlargement. A
    Holga will not give you that increase and is thus not a good
    introduction to the capabilities of 6x6 for a 35mm user.<p>
     
  13. yes. right wing is sharp, quantifiable, reductionist, lens tests,
    pedigrees, mathematical, scientific, cynical, organized. left
    brain=right wing.

    <p>

    yes. left wing is vague, mysterious, spiritual, ambiguous,
    metaphorical, sentimental, gullible, from-the-hip-don't-even-look
    -throught-the-finder intuitive. right brain=leftwing.

    <p>

    try a diana in a dark studio on bulb, with professional lighting
    (kill the modeling lamps and pop), as if you were going to shoot with
    yer ultablad. you will get a QUALITY to this image that is not
    possible with vaseline or zeiss optics. this is a good combination of
    left/right brain... left brain/right wing lighting with right
    brain/leftwing camera. good for all you extremists.

    <p>

    now why i shoot medium format, rollie and diana. it's a quality of
    image that i'm looking for and by quality i don't mean expensive i
    mean a specific characteristic that comes from using more silver in
    the neg per square inch of print formed by a specific type of lens,
    available in a spontaneous creative context. (how's that for a run on
    sentence!) so the diana IS medium format, but it's not rollie. a
    square is a rectangle but a rectangle is not a square.

    <p>

    try the diana (on bulb)in the photojournalist mode with a 283 or a
    lumidyne in the other hand, it's an effect oldtimers got with the long
    decay light of flashbulbs. the strobe bare bulb light brings an edge,
    the long shutter/light decay brings softness and the camera forces you
    to edit your vision to a specifically suitable subject matter.

    <p>

    i have seen many commercial advertising jobs shot with toy cameras.
    there was an article in Photo District News a couple of years back
    that was entirely about this "trend"... is it still a gimmick? even
    when it's a money making tool? what IS a gimmick in photography?
    panoramics? infrared? fisheye? photoshop? is whose hand? in what
    context?

    <p>

    yes. the diana is a gimmick. if you don't know what to do with it.
    but any widely practiced technique can be reduced to a gimmick by an
    unimaginative practitioner who merely apes what they have seen of that
    technique.

    <p>

    what is the difference between a cliche' and a classic? one is well
    done and one is not. nudes, peppers, barns, seagulls.

    <p>

    and if you're bored with your photography and you decide to buy a 6003
    to spice it up, i think you're in bigger trouble.

    <p>

    and when are you guys gonna quit beating that dead lens-test horse?
    jeez.
     
  14. 1. Cameras are tools.

    <p>

    2. Cameras are the means to an end - a photograph.

    <p>

    3. Choose the tool for the job you want to do.

    <p>

    4. The tool used does not make the photograph good or bad.

    <p>

    5. If soft focus is "bad" why does Rodenstock make Imagon lenses?

    <p>

    6. I sometimes use a $15.95 110 camera - I have made interesting photographs with it.

    <p>

    7. I sometimes use a Nikon - I have made interesting photographs with it.

    <p>

    8. I sometimes use a Plaubel Makina - I have made interesting photographs with it.

    <p>

    9. I sometimes use a Hasselblad - I have made interesting photographs with it.

    <p>

    10. I sometimes use a Cambo 4x5 - I have made interesting photographs with it.

    <p>

    GET THE IDEA? You can make good photographs with any kind of tool -- it just takes imagination.
     
  15. s_p

    s_p

    This debate is interesting to me. I agree that we can make good
    photographs with any sort of tool. But if the tool overtakes the
    process, it probably ceases to be a tool, really.<p>
    I don't know how I can explain to you guys that "creativity" and
    "imagination" does not mean that you allow your tool to decide how
    your photograph will look. My complaint with Diana pictures is that
    they all loook like, well, Diana pictures. There has been all sorts
    of fancy talk in art criticism and art education circles about using
    these toy plastic cameras to "learn how to see," or "liberate
    ourselves from the constraints of photography" or whatever. I feel
    that philosophy is very misguided. I think most serious lifelong
    students of photography go through difficult periods. But so do
    painters, writers, musicians, etc. No one suggests that a musician
    switch from a real saxophone to one made by Fischer Price. The
    problem is that most people percieve the tool in photography as being
    SO important that in order to "see different" the photographer must
    switch tools.<p>
    My definition of creativity? Stop switching tools. Work with the
    tool you have; find out everything that you can do with it. In many
    photography education programs the students are asked to commit to
    one camera for a semester. Do the instuctors do this because they
    want to deprive or punish their students? No. The instructors know
    that creativity does not depend on tool choice, it depends upon tool
    use. If you want to take a picture and you have only one camera to
    do it with, you are going to figure out a way. If you are very
    familiar with your tool (which you will be if you stop switching
    tools and keep photographing), working with the tool will be second
    nature and you can spend your energy on making the photograph, not on
    choosing or manipulating your tool.<p>
    As far as the political implications of being pro or con Diana
    photography, well, I read Photography at The Dock by Solomon-Godeau
    and Diana and Nikon by Diane Malcolm. I felt that the arguments both
    of these writers were making were based on the superficial qualities
    of any photographer's personal history and ouvre. Solomon-Godeau in
    particular was rather relentless in categorizing some artist
    photographers from history as "acceptable and correct" and others as
    incorrect. For someone who identified themselves with the left,
    Solomon-Godeaus arguments were EXTREMELY regimented and dogmatic.
    These arguments sound good on paper but outside the paper castles of
    pure theory don't really hold water. NO political philosophy owns or
    controls any given photographic mode. Straight photography is not
    the photography of the right wing, alternative process photography is
    not leftie either. I have done photographic work for publications
    that concearn themselves with the rights of workers, women and
    minorities. I have donated photographs to not for profit auctions
    and not for profit art education groups. THESE acts are my overtly
    political acts in the public realm. Soft focus or no soft focus
    becomes irrelevant in the discussion. In fact, I would argue that
    the continued use of soft focus effects in portrait photography
    actually harms women since it perpetuates the misconception that a
    womans beauty is directly tied to having smooth skin. Maybe we need
    to put away our Softars, Nylon filters and vaseline and start loving
    each other with pores, wrinkles, nosehair and all.<p>
     
  16. The tool does not decide the photograph, the photographer does. The use of any tool is predicated on the idea that it is the best tool for the job (or in this case the photographic effect which enhances the artistic expression).

    <p>

    Your allusion to musicians etc. is way off base, as people such as James Gallway, have recorded albums using "toy" musical instruments specifically because of the "effect" intrinsic to the musical instrument (in fact, there is a toy piano album that was just recently released). In much the same way, the use of a "toy" camera should be for the effect intrinsic to the camera which enhances the final artistic expression. The idea is - correct choice of a tool for the idea to be expressed.

    <p>

    As far as working with a tool. I understand exactly what you are saying, but, for me personally, you're way behind the power curve on that one. My photo instructors were people like Leslie Stroebel (that's right, the View Camera Technique man), Hollis Todd, Richard Zakia etc.

    <p>

    When I bought my first 4x5 (30 years ago) I could only use one lens as that is all I could afford, so I shot with a 180mm for four years. I have use my Makina 670 for 16 years with only one lens as it is not interchangeable. I think I've "worked out" with a single lens, its point of view, framing requirements, characteristics etc. enough that I can make an informed decision to choose the tool I want to use for the idea I want to express. If you haven't - fine, just put more time in. But, be open minded enough to not judge what other people want to do by your current state of photographic advancement.

    <p>

    Just recently, I finally bought an auto-focus 35mm camera and a zoom lens only because the tools I had (manual camera with prime lenses) would make the job I had to do (shoot live action at a cutting horse competition) much more difficult and I probably would have lost many shots.

    <p>

    I also happen to own an Imagon for my Hasselblad. Why? Because when doing some architectural work, the architect asked for something "different" that would convey a "mood." I did an interior looking across a large Jacuzzi, and out through a window towards the sunset. The Jacuzzi was surrounded with candles, two wine glasses which caught the sunnset, towels, bathrobes etc. I photographed it with the slightly softened effect of the Imagon accentuating the highlights of the wine glasses and candles lending an overall soft mood to the scene. It was just what he wanted. Again, use of a tool to and its inherent characteristics to produce an intended effect. Of the 30 photographs I took that day, it is the interior shot that he likes to show to prospective clients as the mood created is slightly altered from reality and gives them the opportunity to imagine what moods might be created in their new house.

    <p>

    I recently purchase a panoramic camera because for two years I have seen photographs that I could not capture with any of 10 cameras in my equipment locker. I tried taking the pictures with my Makina, the Hasselblad and a 4x5 with a 65mm lens. The formats were wrong and the angles of view were not wide enough. One solution. Correct tool.

    <p>

    I sure a painter could paint a picture (or an entire house) with only one brush. Most painters I know have many brushes because they need the effects available from the different brushes. Most of them also use more than one color.
     
  17. Oh yeah. this is fun. i love disagreeing with intelligent people. i'm
    always amazed at the human capacity to simultaneously believe in
    contradictory concepts. interestingly enough it's because we have what
    is called a bi-cameral mind. suitable to this discourse.

    <p>

    stefan, you may recall a conversation we had about Albert Watson, whom
    i was fortunate enough to talk with at legnth. He was exhibiting
    photographs made with cameras from disposable to 8x10 and yet they all
    had a definate stylistic sensibility imposed by an artist of
    sufficient maturation to utilize whatever tool he chose!

    <p>

    your definition of creativity reminds me of the humourous but accurate
    definition of available light: any light that's available.

    <p>

    my definition of creativity (in this context) would be to consider any
    tool, with the progressive choice of the appropriate tool. and the
    only time i crave familiarity with a tool is when i have a deadline!
    which, thank god, is not ALWAYS the case.

    <p>

    i frequently wish i had attended art school, but then i hear an
    argument so enmeshed in an academic perspective that i am relieved to
    have escaped that entanglement. i believe many instructors at art
    school restrict their students choices in order to simplify the
    teaching process, which is necessary when you have a silibus to follow
    and 30 hormone infested post-adolescents to control. i would hate to
    try to instill the concepts of style and vision to students using a
    different camera every day.

    <p>

    but once technique has been learned to the degree of second nature,
    why should i restrict myself to only square pictures when i can take
    round ones, too? i just group these into a new portfolio! and i will
    have a book with many chapters.

    <p>

    by describing types of photography as left or right brained, i assign
    no absolutes of correct or incorrect, these are attributes of a whole
    which need each other to be balanced. it's the old yin/yang thing. the
    most left wing photographer i know uses only one camera and one lens,
    Duane Michaels.

    <p>

    like steve, i became so used to the 135mm lens i used on my first two
    4x5 field cameras, i could look at a scene for 15-20 minutes before
    unpacking my gear and set the tripod up within 12 inches of it's final
    taking position, without even looking through the camera.

    <p>

    now i enjoy being surprised by the angle of veiw of my sx-70, or a
    SL66 focused at 6 inches, hell the rangefinder isn't even close on my
    polaroid 180 but it makes pictures of a totally unique quality and i
    know just when it's the right one for my idea.

    <p>

    you see, when i got excited about photography, it was when i
    discovered i could make pictures, that made people think about things
    that weren't even IN the picture.so who cares (in some instances) if
    the object isn't sharp in focus, as long as the subject is clear!

    <p>

    and steve! what's the name of that woman who's recorded the toy piano
    music, i heard some on NPR and didn't get her name. She's a
    classically trained concert pianist who performs on grand pianos and
    toy ones as well. rollies and dianas, why not?

    <p>

    Thanks.
     
  18. s_p

    s_p

    >>The tool does not decide the photograph, the photographer does.<<
    <p>
    But when the tool becomes overly assertive, we see the tool marks
    rather than the artwork.<p>
    You allusion to Gallway is only about half right. Gallway DID
    use the penny whistle and this choice by a classical flautist
    suprised many. But the songs he was recording were folk songs
    traditionally performed by farmers with inexpensive instuments.
    The penny whistle was not "another flute" to Galway, it was a
    whole new instrument appropriate to the music he was recording.
    If your Hasselblad is a flute, then the Diana is a penny whistle,
    but it is a penny whistle with only about half the number of
    fingering holes it requires to actually play a tune and has a
    reed that only works intermitently.<p>
    In my recollection of my postings I have not attempted to tell
    others that the diana is not a camera or that creativity is
    defined by the tool. But the original poster specifically stated
    that he was wondering if the $15.00 plastic camera was a good
    intro to medium format camera studies. I think the original
    poster would be much better off saving that cash towards a low
    price TLR or similar camera(as has already been suggested) if he
    wants to learn about printing from larger negs. If he wants to
    buy the Holga and knock around and take poorly exposed blurry
    pictures, fine. But lets not delude ourselves into thinking this
    is going to teach him much about the possibilities of imaging
    that become availible when one switches from 35mm to MF. Correct
    me if I'm wrong --- was that not the original question?<p>
    The diana has nothing in common with the Imagon or other soft
    focus specialty lenses. I haven't used these lenses but have
    seen prints from them. The soft focus lenses seem to allow the
    photographer to control the degree of softness and they certainly
    allow the photographer to contol where depth of field will fall
    and allow the photographer to control exposure. As an Imagon
    user feel free to correct me if I am wrong about that. The diana
    is not a soft focus lens, it is a lens that is so bad that they
    make the film plane curved to compensate in some small way for
    its inadequacies. Even fully stopped down my diana did not cover
    the corners. It has it's charms and its place I guess. But a
    good, fun intro to MF photography it is not.<p>
    A few years ago I saw a band called Pianosaurus. They had all
    toy instruments and played cover tunes. Me and my friends drank
    beer and had a good time. I'd never buy a Pianosaurus CD though
    -- it is just a novelty act. If you took away the toys and gave
    them regualar instruments the novelty would have dissapeared.
     
  19. Isn't beauty in the eye of the beholder????

    <p>

    Oh, the way the photgraph is produced is, well Man Ray used different
    methods, Bailey and Co in the seventies were comissioned to use
    Polaroid cameras, Oh, Ornette Coleman played a plastic
    saxophone....most of the time........... but there is a formula for
    for the aspiring photographer ...every day go out and take six
    photographs, when you become bored with your own photos because of the
    sameness in composition and lighting, you are beginning to realise the
    the strong need to view each subject in a different manner. The
    pianist at the parties who plays the same party pieces is on a par
    with the boring photographer.......... go out and play with the
    Holga/Diana/ camera......and be surprised with the results...... Ohh ,
    the lens can be cleaned and get rid of 90% of the smears.....I
    attended two colleges, one art and one technical, in the pursuit of a
    photographic education and I feel this has given me a greater
    confidence in achieving the desired result,but as for restriction on
    thought ......tosh...........OHH, if you really want some easy lens
    tests without getting into sinusoidal transparency and spatial
    frequency............... but I'm definitely not a techno freak and as
    for the original question.........you pays your money and takes your
    choice............and enjoy the fun with the Holga.......... and save
    the prints because after a number of years you will be able to look
    back and still enjoy......but can the same be said of the first shots
    taken with Blads,etc. as an aside, I was recently in the Tampa area
    and I was surprised at the complete lack of Books either by or on Heni
    Cartier- Bresson....at some of the larger bookstores.....'Borders' and
    'Barnes & Noble', .... maybe someone would like to comment....but the
    'Worlds largest bookstore' in Toronto had several...?????

    <p>

    Jack Mc Vicker.
     
  20. <they made the film plane curved>
    that's the best diana joke i've ever heard!....

    <p>

    like they gave a damn whether it was flat or not! the film gates
    aren't square, the lens doesn't cover, the shutter is never the same
    and they leak like a sieve!
    here's a new topic: is an oatmeal box pinhole camera a good intro to
    large format and which kind of brick should i tie it to?
     
  21. sorry, that was a knee jerk response. but deliberately making the film
    plane curved? it would be even funnier if it turned out to be true!

    <p>

    and i don't think this conversation is about the original question
    anymore....
     
  22. That's true Tom.

    <p>

    This thread has strayed far from the original topic. If anyone has
    something helpful to add then please do, otherwise please exercise
    some self restraint!
     
  23. Jim,

    <p>

    My first medium format camera was a Yashica 124G. I bought it used
    for around $150 several years ago and I highly recommended it as an
    intro camera. The Yashica is good and cheap, so in case MF turns out
    to be not right for you then what the heck. Its built-in meter is
    reasonably accurate for B&W at least. I have never used a Holga but
    the above posts have stimulated my curiosity, and I think I am going
    to like it. However, Jim, for a beginner I would recommend something
    that will help you improve your photography. I still use an 124G and
    at f/8 to f/11 its as good as anything out there.
     
  24. This past Sunday (7/4/99) the Seattle Times ran a travel article about China. Benjamin Benschneider did the photography with a Holga. The paper ran three photos and a small article about artistic intent, although the web article features just one photo.
    Incidentally, B&H Photo-Video has begun selling Holgas for $19.95.
     
  25. I stuffed my Holga into a ziploc bag and got some really cool
    underwater pics at depths of about 10 feet. My guess is that
    multiple bags could be used to compensate for pressure at
    greater depths. The bag actually improved the optical qualities
    of the Holga lense.

    -Ed
     
  26. I do professional photography, including weddings, portraits, seniors, etc. I have several professional cameras and all the stuff a studio needs. I also own a bunch of other cameras (Polaroid, Kodak, etc.) They all work and I have fun with them. I bought a Lubitel and few years back and was surprised at the good results I got from "snaps". I don't think I'd use it at a wedding, but if I had to, I could for most of the reception and other non critical stuff. (as you may have noticed, I don't get technical about things - I'm, also a professional musician and I NEVER use all those Latin and Italian words, just plain simple English). So, I bought a Holga. I knew nothing about the camera unil I received it in the mail. I thought my pictures were gonna be horrible, and I was dead wrong. The prints came out very well. I used Kodak B&W 400 speed film and the shots were clear, sharp, and not grainy at all. The next 2 rolls were with some Vericolor 3 - and they too were very good. I even used my studio flashes and stuff and got very good results. Now, under a fine magnifying glass, you can tell that there are some problems with the prints once they get over 8 X 10, but most people don't know the difference. I always leave the insert and get 16 shots per roll. I stuff cardboard next to the rolls to keep them tight and I leave off the lens cap. What I really like about this camera is that I can hand it to just about anyone and they can take a good picture with it without all kinds of explinations. It's not a Hassalblad, nor is it even my Yashica Mat 124, but it's better than any 126, 110, or APS out there. And yes, I'm thinking about spraying the inside with flat black, but I've really had no problems with light leaks yet. The ONLY problem I have with the camera is the way the strap is connected. I'm sure that if I put my mind to it, I can rig up some way of putting on a better strap. And as far as a tripod - I put velcro on the bottom of my camera and a piece of velcro on one of my flash holders (Sunpack) and it works just fine and doesn't interfere with other cameras using the same camera holder for the flash unit. I am starting to teach photography and I am getting Holgas for all of my students. I buy my Fuji 800 color film from TheEconozone.com. It is outdated, but cold stored, cheap, and works great. KMart, Target, and WalMart will do 120/220 film, but it takes an extra day or two. Their prices are very reasonalbe. And, when we start doing the darkroom stuff, the larger negative will aid in the teaching.
    I have made a 20' X 30" poster from a Holga negative, using 400 speed Portra film and it looks great. It isn't that much different than one made with the same film in 35mm size. I will soon be posting up some of my work for you all to see. So, go and get a Holga or 2 and have some fun. You'll be impressed with the results and simplicity of the camera, as well as the advantage of having that larger negative to work with in you home labs. Any questions, call me at 419-474-0143 EST. I'll be happy to discauss anything about this topic with you.

    -Hank Rybaczewski
     
  27. I have used a Holga, and I actually got a super sharp image from it by balancing it on my tripod. It was a bit overexposed, but that is where the magic of Photoshop comes into play. I think EVERY camera, EVERY film, has a usage. Probably even seattle film works does, (not sure what it might be though.) I read on photo.net all the time about people making use of materials others disgard. Its all about vision, skill, patience, knowledge of the craft and adaptability to the information that make the photographer's work unique. But thats just me. I personally think they need to hold a convention or make an ART FILM about this debate because its extremely funny to read what you guys write about. Both sides have valid points,nevertheless it would be great to see an art film about the debates in Photography! Keep up the debates though, they exspand minds and create new art forms!!
     

Share This Page

1111