Florence, Italy | Holga Travel Photography

When I was in Italy for the Jose Villa workshop, Jose surprised the attendees with a half-day trip to Florence. There was only one catch. We could only bring one camera and one lens. For a digital wedding photographer who fires off thousands of shots in a matter of hours, with an arsenal of lenses…this is kinda a big deal. The day before the surprise trip to Florence I was the winner of a drawing amongst the workshop attendees and I received a fabulous little Holga, which I happen to have no experience operating. For those of you that aren’t familiar with the camera, it’s rudimentary to say the least. There is no exposure adjustment or control, you focus manually (but can’t see the results through the eyepiece), so you have to guess the focus by how far you are from the subject. Being in Italy, of course I wanted to bring my trusty 5D MkII to capture every moment in Florence, but Jose encouraged me to challenge myself and step outside my comfort zone.

So, I boarded a train to Florence with only a plastic Holga in my bag. (Bonus- it felt really good to travel light for once!) Shooting film really forced me to slow down and think about each and every shot. After all, I only had a 3 rolls of film with 12 exposures each! After returning home, I sent my film off to the lab and anxiously awaited the results. Today, Fedex finally knocked on my door and presented me with a box full of images. To say I felt like a kid on Christmas morning is an understatement. It was so exciting to tear into the box and relive that day. And, to hold tangible prints…ahhh, such an amazing feeling! So here are just a few of my favs, no editing, no fuss, just beautiful film: