Digital Holga – Turning My Fujifilm X-T30 Into a Toy Camera, Part 2
“…the Fujifilm X-T30 isn’t an especially good or practical way of achieving an out-of-camera Holga look. Can you? Sure, to an extent. The use of a couple of apps improves the results. Even so, there are only a few of these pictures that I really like. I think next time I’ll just load a roll of film into my Holga 120N.”
That statement above is how I concluded Part 1. Put more simply, the Fujifilm X-T30 isn’t a good option for digitally recreating an in-camera Holga aesthetic. Or is it? I’m not one to easily give up. Many of my different film simulation recipes took much trial-and-error to achieve. I failed over and over, but I didn’t give up. I kept trying! Yes, the Toy Camera effect isn’t a good option, but there has to be another way. And there is!
What I ended up doing was punching a hole in some black cardstock, and taping it to the front of the Industar 69 lens. This provided the vignetting that Holga cameras are known for. I added some tape to the edges of the hole to increase the blur at the frame edges. The aperture of the lens had to be preset (I chose f/4) because the cardstock and tape blocked it. I set the aspect ratio on the X-T30 to 1:1 for a square picture.
With this setup I could use any film simulation recipe that I wanted, and I could even do in-camera double exposures. This was a much better way to get an in-camera Holga look! This is a significantly better option than using the Toy Camera effect. It didn’t take very much work to add cardstock with a hole to the front of the lens. While better, this still isn’t the same as shooting film in an actual Holga camera, but it isn’t a bad facsimile, either. This was an interesting experiment that was worth doing, but I probably won’t be doing it again anytime soon.
These are straight-out-of-camera JPEGs using this faux Holga technique: