New orleans, a Holga, and Instagram

New orleans, a Holga, and Instagram

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For the past eight month I have had three rolls of 120 film sitting on my counter as I contemplated whether or not they were worth paying to have developed. I had shot these rolls back in March when I took a trip down to New Orleans. I had been to the city several times before and always loved photographing it but this time I wanted to try something different. Having just purchased a new Holga camera I thought it would be fun to try color film this time. When I shoot film I mainly shoot in black and white and I don’t have much of any experience with color film other than one class I took back in college.

The trip was great and I thought I got some nice shots but it wasn’t until I was on the plane home that I realized that I had forgotten to have my film hand check by security, instead it went through the X-ray machine. Even though we can not see them, X-rays use light waves which means my film that I had already used had just been exposed to a certain amount of unwanted light when it went through security. I didn’t know how much this would effect my photos, I had heard that it wouldn’t really do much damage but then again I did remember my college art professor telling us to make sure we never let out film go through those machines.

So that it why my film had been sitting on the counter for so long. It would cost roughly $15 a roll to have my film developed (120 must be sent away to a lab) and I just didn’t know if I wanted to risk it. Then I got an idea for a new project I wanted to do in color film and thought it would be worth looking into how to develop the stuff on my own. After some research I discovered that I can develop a roll for only $3  on my own. So I bought the chemicals and figured I would practice on my New Orleans film because if they didn’t come out I didn’t really lose much.

I gave it a shot and even after making a few beginner mistakes and having my timer quit on me in the middle of the process I came out with what I though were some pretty cool images. Due to some of my mistakes during processing, the fact that the film went through the X-ray, and that they were shot on a Holga which is known for its high leaks and soft focus, the image quality wasn’t too great on these photos. So I decided they would be perfect for Instagram. I scanned them in and found some filters I liked and in the end I came up with some images I am pretty happy with. Give them a look and let me know what you think.


If you like my images and want to follow me on Instagram my screen name in simply jonathankarwacki

you can find my portfolio here

or you can just click on the little camera icon on the bottom of the page 🙂