Made in China


Whenever I’m getting a bit bored or disillusioned with photography, which I sometimes do, I just load-up a Holga and harmony is restored. THese £25 plastic Chinese cameras are as basic as photography gets these days, and I love them! There are 4 focus zones to choose – close, a bit further away, far away and REALLY far away. Exposure control is even more basic – Sunny and not sunny…and that’s it, load your film and off you go. You can overlap shot (accidentally and on purpose), multi-expose and even slow-sync flash with the use of the ‘B’ shutter setting. If your shots come back with that grungy ‘accidentally went off your bag’ look, then it’s probably because the camera accidentally went off in your bag.
The only ‘problem’ I have with my Holga is that the lens is a little bit too sharp, so I don’t get that proper ‘Lomo look’, but hey, I shouldn’t complain…no, I really shouldn’t complain, it could result in the entire workforce at the Holga factory being taken outside and shot.

img765 img719 img172-2 img125 img122 img119 img105 img088 img087 img085 img084-2 img046 img041 img038


    • Yes, all of them. It’s the GCFN 120, which has a glass lens. Some are taken with, and some without, the insert inside the camera that shapes the square film area. There is a definite ‘sweet spot’ with this lens, it’s about 8 feet.


  1. I should never look at your blog entries when I am feeling great – I now know how long I have to go! Joking aside, fantastic photographs, and you don’t know it but a reply you made to a comment on “Beauty in the Banal” gave me the kick up the backside to start posting some of my pictures, so thank you. Do you mind me asking how you got the effect on “Closed” and the others with similar framing, as I know you are a film photographer whilst I live with my lowly bridge!


    • Thank you!

      None of the images have any effects added, they are all basically straight scans. Some of the images were taken with the film guide fitted in the camera, some without. Holga photography is inherently ‘hit and miss’ – you could take 12 photos of the same subject, in the same light with the same camera and get 12 completely different results! But that’s what I love.


  2. Great – thanks for that! You have now got me looking at Holga cameras on Amazon and my husband grumbling. Well, the grumbling stopped when I handed the debit card over for him to get fish tank accessories. I have always had a probably misguided thought that film photography was expensive, and I use my little Fujifilm FinePix S4400 at the moment, and am getting some half decent (well, in my eyes as I photograph for my pleasure and no other reason) results. Would you recommend a Holga to start with for dipping my proverbial toes into film photography?


    • Oh definitely, they are so easy to use, just set your focus distance, decide whether its sunny or not and off you go!
      The GCFN has a glass lens and a funky multi-coloured flash, but the classic plastic lens versions are great too.


      • God I am so easily swayed! I take it this is the one you are talking about – there is so little price between this one and the plastic lens one I might as well go head first into the unknown….

        I know today is Fuji day and then home with the apps before uploading, but given the price (I do have an old Pentax lying round somewhere but I am going to be perfectly honest – the 5 lenses that come with it confuse me in the way a DSLR does, so would rather stick with something I do know how to use, the Pentax was my late father’s camera)

        Given the price, and then developing, I don’t think I have much to lose really? I know my pictures are purely for my pleasure, and taken from odd angles due to the wheelchair, but I can but give it a go. And then bug you for an honest appraisal!


      • Yep, that’s the one. I personally think that the extra £10 for the glass lens is worth it. I just ordered another, I also got the 120 Pan Panoramic, that was £60, but that’s £3000 cheaper than a Linhoff!


  3. We have a sort of result – the better half said I can get this one next month

    as it is my first go, and seeing as I have been in and out of hospital so much. I know it isn’t the fancy one, but if I can do anything that I enjoy with it, I can go up one and have the glass lens and fancy coloured flash unit to see where that might take me. I really appreciate the advice, thank you. Will be putting up a post of my own soon as I have had a fit free day so far and have been out with the little FujiFilm so am going to have a play with the results of that. Thankyou 🙂


  4. just a quick comment to say sorry if it seems like i am spamming you with “likes”. i just haven’t had a chance to check my emails for a while and am only just now catching up with your entries. my likes shows my love for your photos and entries – i am not a spammer 🙂


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