Monday, 15 August 2011

Canon Does Holga

Southampton Tomatoes-© 2011 Tewfic El-Sawy

When the heavens open up to a deluge of rain upon a Long Island summer house, what does one do? Well, in my case, I find still life to photograph with my new Holga lens attached to my Canon 7D, which I had the foresight of bringing along just in case.

Whilst in Buenos Aires, my friend Mervyn Leong won one of the Holga lenses during a quiz session at the Foundry Photojournalism Workshop. Having seen some of his test photographs with it, I bought one from B&H a few days ago, and I am liking it a lot.

Southampton Fruits-Photo © 2011 Tewfic El-Sawy

The results look as if they were made with a classic analogue toy plastic camera, it has soft-focus properties, produces more Holga-like vignetting, and opens up a new dimension to my photography. In a few weeks, I'll be in Kolkata leading a photo expedition and teaching a workshop, and I intend to take it with me and try it out on its streets. I have a few projects in mind while there, which involve portraits...and having this attachment will add a different style. I'll be interested to explore its video results as well.

This reminds me that John Stanmeyer published a wonderful book Island of Spirits, which he photographed using analogue (ie real) Holgas.

The main drawback with a Holga lens is that it needs a huge amount of light. That being said, I prefer an underexposed look for the images made with it, so a manual setting is preferable.

Canon 7D With A Holga Lens f8