Film photography · Medium Format · Photography

Out with the Holga part 1

On the day I tried out my first roll of the new Kodak Gold 120 variant, shot with my Yashicamat, I also took the Holga with me. I still had a couple of rolls of the “bad batch” Fomapan 100 (the one that liberally sprinkles little white specks on the resulting pictures), and it seems a good fit to shoot it with the Holga as, while I don’t want to use faulty film with the camera, it is great at covering up such defects due to its uniquely rendered images. I also have quite a stash of film at present and aim to try and get through some of it this year.

This was the first time I’d used the Holga in over a year – the last time was for some snowy shots back in January 2021 – and it’s easy to forget how much I like the pictures it produces. While this roll didn’t produce twelve bangers, I still got several I was happy with, and so I’ll post them here today and tomorrow.

I developed the roll in some of my remaining trial bottle of Adox Adonal (Rodinal in all but name) and used a 1+24 dilution which gave a pleasingly short 4 minute developing time. I’m pretty happy with the way they’ve turned out.

Corner plot
Behind the pollarded trees

Holga 120N & Fomapan 100. Adox Adonal 1+25 4mins @ 20°.

Taken on 10 April 2022

35mm · Film photography · Photography

Through an unnamed village and towards Christmas

Today’s photo is one of those scenes where, to my eye, everything just looked to be in the right place to make for an interesting picture. It definitely needed the power / telephone pole and wires I think, and I remember placing myself so that the lamp on the front of the building to the right would be silhouetted. It’s one of those pictures where I just though “yes” when I saw it come out of the scanner.

We’re now in that period post-Halloween and bonfire night here in the UK where Christmas kicks into higher gear. Now that those two have passed, retailers, advertisers and all the rest will launch into six weeks of increasing festivity ready for the big day. Last year quite a lot of people actually put Christmas decorations up as soon as bonfire night had passed, claiming the miserable Covid year meant they needed something to cheer them up. I wonder if that will persist? Personally it’s waay too early just yet. December 1st is my unofficial line I think. Advent clandars will appear then, the festive idents will appear on the terrestrial TV channels, and the first weekend after this date is usually when we trim the house. Still four weeks away yet though.

I also need to start putting together my gift for this year’s Emulsive Secret Santa now that names have been drawn. It’ll be back to a chunkier package again this year following last year’s paper-gifts only rule due to the pandemic. I’m looking forward to finding things to pop into the parcel.

Before we know it
Christmas will be here again
Where has this year gone?

Village street

Olympus XA3 & Ilford HP5+ (@800asa). Ilfotec DD-X 1+4 10mins @ 20°

Taken on 22 October 2021

35mm · Film photography · Photography

Power and communication

A slightly grandiose title today. It sounds like I’m about to launch into an essay on politics and propaganda or something. Well, if that’s what you’re here for then prepare for disappointment. Instead, you’re getting some power-line photos. The bonus is that they’re carrying telephone wires too. Woot!

I think it was the large web of wires atop the poles that caught my attention. Telephone poles are becoming less common in urban areas such as where I live, with new cabling being run underground through ducts, although there are still poles to be found on older estates, particularly out into the suburbs. Out in the countryside theough and they’re still pretty common, although not always with such a bounty of cabling. I spotted this pair in a small village while out driving arounf looking for photo opportunities. I think they look pretty good against the threatening skies.

When we’re mistaken
By something someone might say
We have got crossed wires

Power and communication

Olympus XA3 & Ilford HP5+ (@800asa). Ilfotec DD-X 1+4 10mins @ 20°

Taken on 22 October 2021

35mm · Film photography · Photography


This wooden telephone pole (I still have an urge to call them telegraph poles, despite that mode of communication having fallen into history) sprouts from a bushy hedge. The base of the pole is becoming hidden by encroaching branches, and tendrils of ivy are starting to reach higher up the structure.

The pole serves a double purpose, also acting as the host for a streetlamp – a charmingly vintage-looking one with its little flourished curl where it holds the lamp.


Weathered wooden pole
So many seasons pass by
Cracking its structure

Light fixture

Olympus OM-2N, Zuiko Auto-S 50mm f/1.8 & Kodak Tri-X Pan (expired 2003) . Ilfotec DD-X 1+4 8mins @ 20°.

Taken on 5 April 2021

35mm · Film photography · Photography

Rural transport and the making of memories

Yep, it’s a bus stop. It’s quite a nice stone-built one though, and it’s in a beautiful location.

This is one of those photos that I like without it being of a traditionally photogenic subject. A bus stop is mundane, but this one looks like some sort of miniature bothy sat on a wide grass verge beside a country road.

I like the way the telephone wires lead out of the scene to destinations unknown.

I like the white laundry blowing on the washing line as it reminds me of the freshness in the air on the day I made the photograph.

I sometimes wonder how much a photograph engages it’s creator because it triggers memories? For other people, the stories need to be created. For me it brings the day I visited this place back to the front of my mind, and reminds me of the other things that happened on the day: How I was cross that it was cloudy on the morning I left the house, despite the weather forecast promising otherwise; how my mood lightened as the sun began to break through the cloud cover; remembering a long-ago school trip to one of the villages I passed; thinking my little car might struggle to carry my weight up a very steep hill; how myself and another walker struggled to follow the footpath (and he climbed a dry-stone wall and nearly did himself an injury on some barbed wire; how a man videoing Magpie Mine asked me if I would let him record my thoughts (I did); waiting ten minutes for clouds to move across the sky and balance out one of my compositions…

Maybe not a thousand words, but it’s not the half of what this picture says to me either.

Country bus stop

Canon Sure Shot Supreme & Ilford Delta 400.

Taken on 16 March 2020