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The Holga is a true icon in lo-fi photography. It began production in China as a cheap camera made for the working class. To keep production costs low, the cheap camera construction and simple lens meant that the camera was prone to a number of optical distortions such as vignetting, blurring and light leaks - what was seen as "imitations" in the technical sense.

 

This happened to attract a cult following among photographers worldwide, who believed these limitations forced them to concentrate on being creative and innovative, instead of being overly conscious about the complicated functions of new cameras. Many photographs taken on a Holga went on to win numerous awards in photography <!--more--> competitions - and ultimately defined what lo-fi photography is today.

 

History

The Holga camera has been around for quite a long time! In fact the first version came out in the 1980's - when medium format film was still used. It was intended to be a camera that was marketed for being a cheap alternative to the other medium format film cameras available at the time. It did not take off at the time as the 35mm format film virtually dominated the medium format film. 

 

Holga Today

The Holga has made a resurgence and comeback in popularity and survives today as one of the most popular cameras that shoot in the 120 medium format film. The Holga is simple in design but at the same time capable of capturing stunning images. The Holga is seen to be one of the iconic cameras that embraces all the concepts promoted by the Lomography movement. 

 

The Concepts

Everything about the Holga cameras is distinctively different to what digital photography represents - the focus does not centralise on shooting the perfect picture, or on using the most expensive or up to date equipment. In fact the desired effect and focus is totally opposite to that - users shooting Holga allow  elements such as luck, chance and uncertainty to play a role in capturing the perfect moments. 

 

Written by lofi co — April 04, 2013

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