Holga 120S: The Camera That Started it All


Ever knew the history of the legendary Holga cameras? Well it all started with this little black, plastic and playful baby as the first model ever. But did you know this baby also pulled me straight into analogue photography and Lomography?

A few years ago, my father’s friend, who is a photographer, handed me a particular black object. It was a gift, lightweight, plastic, and really unusual. Of course, it was a camera! But what made it really special was that it was no ordinary camera. My dad studied film and had photography courses in school. So he explained to me that it used film and everyone in the past used film, before digital was around. I was always interested in photography, but I just thought digital is so meaningless now that things could be erased, replaced, and edited.

This Holga 120S was the first model ever made. Plastic lens, single shutter speed, 2 apertures (sunny and cloudy), a (rusty) hotshoe, no tripod mount, no shutter release option, and an included frame mask (I have no idea what size it is, I just use it). But the best of all features of my Holga is that it was DISCONTINUED (but worth really little).

Over weeks, this camera kept staring at me from the bookshelf, hypnotizing me with his looks, wanting me to use him. So one day, I found out that 120 film still exists and quickly purchased a roll. I searched the internet on how to load film into my precious Holga and how to take care of it. I saw many pictures popping with saturation and colours that just made me go WOW. After my roll was done, I asked my friend who has an actionsampler where should I develop my film and after 3 days, here are the results:

I know they’re underexposed, with too many light-leaks, BAD. I did not know what those meant at that time but I was amazed at the results and motivated to buy more rolls and shoot! After months of getting to know my baby, I mastered him well.

Sadly, my baby grew up and I thought it was just missing something. So I bought the Diana F+ instead. However, I still yearn for my Holga after some time. I can see him having a comeback soon.

written by domo-guy on 2012-01-16 #gear #plastic #120 #review #camera #lomography #holga #discontinued #user-review #basic #holga-120s

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