Introduction: Holga Toy Camera

Background of the camera:

A Holga is a *medium format camera 120 film. This camera was originally made in Hong Kong. It is an all-plastic camera and it is also a manual to use. The camera first appeared outside China in 1982 The Holga was intended to provide a mass-market camera for the Chinese working-class in order to take family portraits and overall taking pictures. A few years later the camera became very popular because of its film size and the format of the camera itself. Then in 2015 in late November, Tokina( the company of the camera) had shut down the factory that produced Holga cameras and other camera-related things. Ending the production of the toy camera, but in 2017 they found molds of the camera and might start remaking the Holga toy cameras again.

* Medium Format cameras: uses any camera format that makes use of the 120 film size.

This is a very easy camera to use you just need to keep a few things in mind when using it It is a plastic camera so it can break easy(be careful) Tape the sides and bottom so you don’t get light leaks Have the settings correct when shooting


Where can I get the supplies?

Holga: Holga

Film: 5 Rolls B&W ( you can buy less or in color)

Tape: Any kind works


- Film Tank To Roll film into ( I use plastic but there is also steel)

- Chemicals SPRINT or Amazon

- Scissors can get any kind

-Film holders Clear plastic

- plastic bins for development


- Darkroom: any all-black no lightroom.

- glass sheet

- Photo paper : B&H website ( fiber paper)

Step 1: STEP 1: Get the Camera Prepped

Grab the camera, make sure you have all the pieces: The back, the clips, tape, film, all on your working space.

Step 2: STEP 2: Load the Camera

Grab your film and open up your camera ( take the clips and the back off) then you should have an extra film rod in your camera.

Grab film roll and take the small piece of tape off the whole film roll. (look at the image provided) Place on the left side ( film you opened) and have the extra rod on the right Start to unroll the film should say unexposed and glade in all the way across the camera You should see a little notch on the rod on the left that you should insert the small piece of the beginning of the film into. Move the notch on the top ( spinner) to make it roll the film into the camera Start to do that until you start to see arrows

Step 3: Step 3: Put Camera Together

Once you have step 2 done place the back of the camera on and place the clips on the sides of the camera.

* the camera may have light leaks so tape the clips and the bottom back to the bottom of the camera.* On the back of the camera, there will be a 12 or a 16 this will be how many pictures you will take. ( depends if you have an extra piece) Start to wind the knob on the top of the camera until you see a little 1 in the bo

Step 4: STEP 4: Start Shooting

Now that you have the camera ready you may begin shooting your film.

Look at the lens and you will see a few pictures move the lense to what you are shooting (portrait, 2 people, a group, landscapes) Also, change the lighting ( inside or outside and sunny) this is located on the looking at it up it will be on the left above the lense -Once you have that done there will be a little knob on the camera right by the lense that is sticking out: push that down to take the picture.

Step 5: Step 5: Unload Camera

Once you have the picture taken roll the knob until you see a 2 and repeat until you get to the number of pictures you are taking.

I took 16 pictures so once I hit the 16 and took my final picture you roll the knob a few times to roll the film into the exposed side of the camera Now you want to un-tape the camera and take out your roll of film from the right of the camera There should be a little strand of tape sticking out lick that and place it around the paper around the film ( look at the video and photos) * Now you have 2 options for Development*

Step 6: STEP 6: Develop Film ( 2 Options)

This step you have 2 options:

Bring it to a store and they develop it Or Do it yourself. ( Steps Below)


The first step of doing it yourself: go into the darkroom and bring the film tank and scissors with you: unravel the film from the paper and cut it off the film

2nd Step: cut the non-straight side and make it straight and then roll it into the white coil ( this will take a few times) and then the film should be on that

3rd step: place the black rod into the container and place the white film coil into that: and grab the lid twist until you hear a click

*now you can leave the darkroom*

4th step:

Develop the film with the list below: Film Processing : 22 oz. ( of each)

Pre-wash (tap water) Agitate for 1 minute

Developer ( 68- 70 f) Agitate for the first 30 seconds let rest for 30 seconds and then agitate for 5 seconds every 30 seconds of rest ( pour down drain) 8.5 mins

Stop Bath: Agitate for 1 minute ( put back into Container) can reuse

Fixer: agitate for first 30 seconds let rest for 30 seconds and agitate for 5 seconds every 30 seconds for 5 minutes Water: wash fill tank and agitate for 3 minutes

Fixer remover: agitate for 1 minute (return to same container )

Water wash:fill tank and agitate for 3 minutes

Photo Flo: 1 Minute ( soapy water)

Step 7: Step 7: Take the Film Out and Put Into Plastic

Once you have your film developed place somewhere safe and clip the film to dry for 1 hour.

Now dried look at the negatives on a light table ( optional ) and cut out 4 pictures for each spot of the negative sheets to see your pictures

Step 8: Step 8: Enlarge and Contact Sheets

Bring your plastic sheet into your darkroom and bring the glass sheet also

Place your plastic sheet on the table and put the glass sheet on the top. ( paper underneath) Set the enlarger to 5 seconds and cover the whole sheet until you have the corner just showing Move the paper down until you go through the whole paper is shown Then run the paper through the chemicals and once complete see what number and repeat the process to make a contact sheet.

Developer: 3.5- 4 minutes ( I'm using Fiber paper so it takes longer)

Stop Bath: 1 minute

Water Wash: 1 minute

Fixer:4 minutes

Fixer Remover: 2 minutes

Water Wash 20 minutes

*Then let to dry*

Step 9: Step 9: Making a Picture

Now that you can see the pictures you have grabbed the negative of the picture you want to and put it into the negative carrier and repeat the process without the glass plate on top: also use a grain finder to make sure your photo is in focus. Once you have that see what number of seconds you need to have rich dark black and whites.

Then you have made a picture let it stay in the water wash for 20 mins. Let it dry from the water wash and then you can press the paper with heat to make it flat. *Now you have enlarged an image*

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