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Holga Telephoto Lens

Feel a bit constrained by the Holga's fixed lens and perspective? Well, this is the accessory for you!

One of the nice things about a Holga is that there’s so many things you can do with them. For a long time, people have been finding creative ways to get additional effects or options. Well, there’s also a wide range of accessories you can get to widen your creative options.

Credit for the above photo goes to xinhaicc on eBay.

The Telephoto lens is a nifty little add-on that costs next to nothing for what it is. You slip it over your Holga’s lens – I’ve tested it on a 120N and 135BC, but I’m sure it’ll work with all Holgas – set the focus to infinity, and shoot as normal. However, it has three very pronounced effects.

Photo by coldkennels

Firstly, it gets you closer! Like all Tele lenses, it brings you that bit closer to your subject, and flattens perspective slightly, meaning that the background seems much closer to the foreground. As such, the boat in the image above was much further away from the trees than it seems. However…

Photo by coldkennels

Don’t think it’ll act like a zoom lens! While I was aware of the fact I was very far away from my girlfriend in the above shot, I hoped the tele lens would make more of a difference than it did.

But when used properly, it can add a whole new perspective that otherwise wouldn’t have existed.

By now, you’ve probably noticed just how strong the vignetting is on these shots. It makes every photo on 120 look like a fisheye print – so very, very circular. Well, this has another handy use…

When using 35mm in a 120 Holga, a lot of the vignetting is lost. Using this lens adds it back in! The one issue with this is you’ve got to be pretty precise about how centrally you’ve loaded your 35mm, or things might look a little… unbalanced?

Photo by coldkennels

We’re not done yet, though. The Telephoto has a final – and less pronounced – trick up its sleeve.

Photo by coldkennels

Because of the way the front element of the lens has been made, the edges become even dreamier than standard Holga shots, and things can get slightly distorted, enhancing your Holga’s natural penchant for dream-like shots.

I’m quite fond of this little guy, but I’m not going to lie – this lens isn’t going to change your life. It’s not going to be used on every single shot you take. But if you shop around, it comes very, very cheaply, and, with its little carry-bag and lens caps, is perfect for just throwing into your bag every time you take your Holga out for a walk, ready for those moments when you find yourself thinking “if only I could…”

written by coldkennels


  1. wuxiong


    Like the article and all the shots......

    over 3 years ago · report as spam
  2. monkeyalien


    helpful!!! thanks

    over 3 years ago · report as spam
  3. wacketmuffet

    I just got this lens and the article was helpful.

    over 2 years ago · report as spam

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This is the original article written in: English. It is also available in: 中文(繁體版).