First Holga Images

Last weekend I finally got around to trying to develop my first black and white film. I took a variety of images using a medium format (120) Holga. The whole process has been fun and in complete contrast to my usual digital images. I intend to write in more detail about my experience but for now I wanted to share the first images and my initial thoughts on the process.

The Holga is a cheap plastic camera with a terrible lens and almost no control. It takes medium format 120 roll film resulting in 12 or 16 images per roll. I chose to use the full frame so only 12 images for me. In theory there is some ability to focus the camera – basically one person, several people, mountains and I am quite sure every individual camera will behave differently, so the chances of getting a sharp image is reduced even further (ignoring the technical qualities of the plastic lens).

As far as the aperture/shutter speed in concerned to all intents and purposes it is fixed, although the model I have actually provides a B-mode and with a tripod I guess you could use a long exposure to interesting effect.  In practice apparently the camera works out around somewhere between f8 and f11 and around 1/60th of a second. I need to play a lot more to sort out the exact values, again the control over the resulting image is very limited, basically pick your film speed and try and find lighting suitable.

Anyway I took a roll of film mainly commuting to work so I chose a 400ASA Ilford HP5 plus black and white film. which I hoped would be sufficiently fast. In reality I probably need something a bit faster or to wait until later in the year (it is winter here right now).

Not content with using a very dodgy camera in not great light I also decided to try my hand at processing the film myself, just to see what I have been missing by using the digital dark room. Again there is much to be said on the subject I will try and return to it later. On the plus side I appear to have successfully developed my film without too many difficulties (thanks @tedforbes from The Art of Photography podcast). I have now scanned the images in and here they are…

 

AtHome_2010-07-27_20-50-44_Holga 11_©RichardLaing(2010)

 

What next? Well I intend to try and print the images using the chemical dark room just to complete the exercise, I may even develop some more just for fun. The experience has been interesting and the limitations have made me think more about the composition of my images, and using the chemical darkroom certainly makes me appreciate the relative ease and comfort afforded by the digital darkroom.

 

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SmuginProForAperture 1.1 Released

I have just uploaded SmuginProForAperture 1.1, for this release

 

  • The caption and keywords can now be updated when replacing an existing image.

  • User feedback has been improved; the percentage uploaded is now reported in the Aperture activity window and other information and error messages have been updated.
  • The galleries can be displayed either as a hierarchical menu or as a simple list.
  • Fixed a bug where replacing an image would fail if the SmugMug gallery has been deleted.

 

 

SmuginForAperture 1.1 Released

I have just uploaded SmuginForAperture 1.1, for this release

  • User feedback has been improved; the percentage uploaded is now reported in the Aperture activity window and other information and error messages have been updated.
  • The galleries can be displayed either as a hierarchical menu or as a simple list.
  • Fixed a bug where replacing an image would fail if the SmugMug gallery has been deleted.

SmuginForAperture is a free Aperture plugin for exporting images to SmugMug.

 

School Holidays

I am just at the end of an absurdly busy week with my kids. The winter holidays are just about to end here and I have been entertaining them taking them skiing, to the zoo, Antarctic Centre and various other events and activities. It has been great fun but quite tiring.

As a result I still haven’t managed to finalise release of SmuginForAperture 1.1 although I am almost there now. I have been trying to debug a couple of issues with users one of which looks like a temporary SmugMug problem that is now solved. Look for the update at the start of next week.

In the meantime here are a couple of images taken over the holidays:

View from Porter’s Pass

Wild Kea

Posterous

I follow @tedforbes on Twitter having always enjoyed his excellent ‘The Art of Photography’ podcast and had a look at some of the images he posted via Posterous. He had mentioned it on one of his podcasts previously but I didn’t get around to investigating at the time. Having had a bit more of a look at Posterous it seemed interesting and I signed up for an account. So far I am really pleased, finding it fun and easy to use; posting images up there is straightforward via email or bookmarklet.

Posterous is quick, simple and I like the clean basic page format as well, give it a try.