painting the town holga

Before venturing out on a Friday or Saturday night I am invariably faced with the question to take or not to take?. Last night was no different, except that upon deciding on the to take option I moved on to the question of which to take - the beautifully bulky Holga or the decidedly shinier (and usefully, purse-size) digital snapper. I weighed up the options and considered the evening's events (and outfit), ultimately opting to head out with the dime-a-dozen silver Kodak. Thank god, because I left it in a bloody taxi.

Don't get me wrong - I'm not thankful that I lost my handy little box of whirrs and beeps. Quite the contrary: I'm thoroughly annoyed that I no longer have the option of a digital pointer-and-shooter; I'm slightly disappointed that I have forever lost the few images I had taken up to that point in the night (11:30pm, approximately); and I'm absolutely mortified that somewhere in the city, a stranger has access to 250+ images of the last six months or so of my life. Rather, I'm deeply grateful that when the camera gods decided they had to take something from me, they didn't set their sights on my Holga.

There are a few reasons for this:
  1. My Holga was a gift from several close friends for my birthday last year, so it has sentimental value. (In contrast, the Kodak was a gift from my ex-boyfriend.)
  2. According to several sources, every Holga is unique in its light-leaking and image-capturing properties, implying that each camera has a distinct character. I quite like my Holga, and I'm not really open to the idea of getting used to a new one.
  3. Even though the Kodak cost more money than the Holga, the idea of losing the $15 film in addition to the plastic camera kind of stings.
OK, so my point here is that in contemplating the relative pluses and minuses of losing my digital camera, I began thinking about all the great nights out I've had with the Holga, which led to the inference that this would NEVER happen with my Holga (I'm reaching for the nearest wood right now), which in turn reinforced my belief that, at least for me, automatic digital cameras are more trouble than the mediocre images they produce are worth. (A sidenote: please don't be offended if you are an automatic digital camera user. You probably take awesome photos. I'm just bummed out that I lost my camera.)

In an attempt to focus on the positives (and not the fact that some perv might be looking at images of me and my loved ones even as I type), I am taking some time to reflect on all of the glorious late nights and early mornings the Holga has spent dangling (un)graciously around my neck, and the subsequent images that make the nights' events more lucid while somehow managing to look damn fine, too.

laird @ ac/dc lane

When Laird ducked out of Cherry in the wee hours for a sneaky smoke, I took the opportunity to position him in front of some sweet graffiti so I could snap this (see above). It was to be the first of many graffiti portraits, but for whatever reason I haven't taken another since.

jayney, laird & ella @ 446a

These images are about all I have to inform me of a fateful Brunswick night involving sequins, vodka and a boy named Ming. Jayney is pulling some typically amazing dancefloor moves (admirably managing to contain the contents of her drink), while Laird and Ella share a fabulously animated moment between housemates. 446a, we need another party!

grizzly jim @ the derby

I don't remember why Jim began impersonating Jack Nicholson. All I know is I reached for the camera between my own hearty chuckles in order to commit the moment to film. I am very glad that I did.

een & pete @ the birmy

Proof that good shots at the Birmy are not limited to those focused on the stage, Een responds to my suggestion that I take a photo by pulling this face. If the photo also captured me, I imagine my expression would resemble Pete's.

Holga, I know I haven't always been kind to you. I've knocked you around, I've abandoned your lens cap, I've used you in shameless attempts to talk to really really good-looking people, I've subjected you to the odd spilt beer and there's a rattle in you that I can't explain. But just look at all the great times we've shared! Please, don't follow in the footsteps of that silver floozy. It's you that I love.

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