Tag Archives: Lo-Fi

Occasionally Glancing Up

Through the rain.

Three in a row from my last Holga roll. This was the first roll I shot without the 6×6 mask, so there’s some nice bleedover onto the edges of the film. Interesting to note that the exposures are so different. The sun was going down, so hypothetically they should get darker from left to right. Since the Holga shutter mechanism is a disc with a hole and a spring, it’s not really surprising that these are all over the place.

Holga, Fuji Pro 800Z.

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Filed under Color, Film, Landscape

Bleak House

It’s a cipher.

This is another from my first-ever Holga roll. In addition to setting the counter to 645 (vertical rectangles 6×4.5cm) instead of 6×6 and therefore overlapping exposures, this one was accidentally set to bulb, resulting in blurring and overexposure. I think the effect is interesting, though unintentional. Isn’t that the point?

Holga, XP2.

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Filed under Abstract, Black and White, Film

Cicada’s

(Possessive, not plural).

“Be sure the fortune that you seek / is the fortune that you need.”

Holga, XP2.

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Filed under Abstract, Black and White, Film, Landscape

The 92 Megapixel Holga

(Actually, 92.3)

I finally got back the first roll of film from my Holga. I always order my film “develop only,” then scan my negatives and see what’s worth printing. Since I very rarely print anything, it saves me a lot of money. As I detailed in my previous post, I managed to do an extremely good job of messing up the film by overlapping all of the exposures. I was hoping that at least one of the overlapped images would be something at least interesting, and I think it worked out. I tried to take the same shot twice, first using the “f/11” setting and then using the “f/8.” Because of my winding error, it didn’t really work out as planned. I do still think it’s interesting, though.

The first time I scanned this image, I didn’t bother to change the scan resolution. I had left it set at 2800 dpi, which produced scans from 35mm frames in the neighborhood of 10 megapixels, which was a good compromise between giant files and printable resolution. When I scanned this frame at 2800 dpi (which is somewhat cropped from the original), I ended up with a 92 megapixel image (or, to be exact, 92,390,540 pixels). While this is wonderful in theory, it meant a file of more than 227 MB, so unwieldy that it crashed Lightroom on my Macbook Pro (1536 MB RAM and a dual-core 2.0 ghz processor) when I tried to spot correct a bit of dust. It is also utterly pointless, as the Holga lens is in no way capable of resolving the level of detail that would reward this level of resolution. In spite of this, I plan on bragging about this regularly. The next time someone shooting with a D300s and an 18-55 kit lens takes a break from toggling through the auto modes to ask me about my camera, I can just say it’s 92 megapixels. (Or I can be nice – I’m not as mean as I claim to be).

Holga 120N overlapping exposure, Ilford XP2 Super.

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Filed under Black and White, Film, Landscape

Stop . . . Holga Time

As a somewhat dedicated lo-fi photographer (I think anyone who has shot a roll of film that cost more than the camera it went into deserves this designation), I have been jealously eying Holga shots for quite some time now. It just always seemed like a silly thing to spend money on, since I would need a new developing tank and 120 film to go with it. All of this changed last week when I accepted a job offer. It seemed like a good time to buy myself a present (especially one that was $19 with free shipping), and since all of my black and white chemistry has gone bad anyway, I bought C-41 process black and white film instead of the traditional stuff (so it can be processed anywhere, although most labs won’t do the 120 film the Holga uses, at least not in-house).

While anxiously awaiting my UPS package (apparently two day air means five days?), I read up on all sorts of Holga info. It seemed like everyone who has tried one has made some sort of silly mistake on his/her first roll, from loading the film wrong to leaving the lens cap on to exposing all of the film when the camera’s back fell off (which I couldn’t really imagine until I held one myself).

After my Holga finally arrived, I resolved not to make any of the silly mistakes I had read about, loaded a roll of XP2, and started shooting. Holgas can shoot in one of two formats: 6×6 or 6×4.5. 120 film has a paper backing with counting numbers in different locations which allow the photographer to advance the film the correct distance. Since the 6×6 images are 1.5cm wider, they require a little more winding between images (and thus only get 12 images to a roll instead of 645’s 16). When I had finished shooting my first roll, I tried to advance the film the rest of the way so I could take it out. As I kept turning the film advance, the numbers went way past 12 to 13, 14, and all the way to 16. I had left the counter set to 645, so all of my images overlapped into one continuous mess. I decided to have the film developed anyway, but I’m not expecting much from it. I guess we’ll see in a few days.

At least now I’ve made my official first Holga mistake.

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Filed under Photo-philosophy

A-Treat

Another from my Provia roll this weekend. When I first ran these negatives through the scanner (I always check the “develop only” box now that I have a negative scanner, and Ritz still charges $4.50), I was disappointed. They had the graininess and sharpness that I like from my cross processed rolls, but the color shifts were minimal and the dynamic range was impossibly thin. I bracketed each shot, and in many cases one was underexposed and one had blown highlights all over. Is Provia a bad film for cross processing? A quick Flickr search suggested that this is definitely not the case.

So why did my film look funny? Turns out the automatic exposure software in my scanner doesn’t handle weird negatives very well (specifically the white point setting). Once I went back and set it manually, I got some very interesting results. Here’s one in color:

a-treat

Minolta XD5, probably an old MC 50mm f/1.8 (it could have been the 28mm, and I really should be able to tell), Fuji Provia 400F expired September 2004 and cross processed at Ritz.

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Filed under Color, Film, Street Photography

Speed I

speed-1

More toy cameras.

I shot another roll of redscaled film last week with much better results. Wide angle lenses (even if they are plastic and attached to a $3 camera) ar great for close-up perspective-disorting shots. I like how huge the (admittedly huge in real life) brake rotor looks. I had a dream last night that I bought some sort of used Triumph, and it reminded me that I wanted to post this.

Kodak Gold 200 film (expired six years ago and salvaged from my roommate’s mother’s closet) redscaled and shot in a Fuji Smart Shot II toy camera.

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Filed under Color, Film, Street Photography