I tried shooting the Holga in the studio once again. This time, I tried doing some light painting. I know it’s not the most original, but it’s still fun to do and I think I’ll try it again in the future.
When shooting on the street, I usually just use the Holga’s 3 feet and infinity settings, for either I want a close up or a landscape. But, here in the studio I wanted to show more of my subject’s body and shape. So, I went with the 4-6 foot focus setting. For whatever reason, that distance seems to be pretty tricky and the photos are often blurry. To make sure my focus was sharp ( at least for a toy camera, anyhow ) I set up the Holga on a tripod and used a tape measure to ensure that the final result would be crisp. I took one photo with a flash and had the model stay put. From there, I turned off the lights in the studio and had an assistant move a flashlight around the model. While he was doing so, I opened up the shutter on the B setting for roughly twenty seconds or so, thereby giving us a double exposure. I tried this two times with two different colored lights. Here are both of my results.
It’s often hard to tell what the Holga will actually capture. For example, in these two photos, I didn’t think that the left part, behind the backdrop, would be in the final image. This wasn’t my intention, so I’ll have to be more careful when shooting with the Holga in the studio next time around. I think with a little bit more planning and experimenting, I can get even better pictures in a similar style. I’ll have to give it another go soon enough. These two studio photos were captured with a Holga 120N on Kodak Portra 400 medium format film. © Patrick Bresnahan