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Vintage cameras everywhere!

I got my first camera when I was around 14. It was an Argus C3 Rangefinder that my dad bought at a second-hand store. Of course, it was a 35mm film camera with a decent lens. This rangefinder camera was the catalyst for my photography hobby that has spanned over four decades.


In high school, I used the school cameras, which were Nikkormats. Then I inherited a Nikon F with the Photomic head and started shooting with that one. We were developing and printing black & white in the first course. In the second photo course, we took our color film to the local lab, "Lustre Color," and they did the processing. We were printing 16" x 20" color prints, and all we had to pay for was the paper. I also had a small black and white darkroom at home in a closet under the stairwell. I used to print some of my dad's old negatives and see what he shot as a young man.


When I rode my bicycle coast to coast in 1984, I carried a Pentax ME Super with a 50mm f1.4 lens and a Vivitar Series I 28-90 zoom macro lens. I shot about 28 rolls of slides that I still have, along with a projector. Someday, I plan on scanning in these slides and creating a digital show.


As cameras have evolved into the digital world, so did I! My first decent digital camera was a Nikon Coolpix 995 that cost about $800. I see them on eBay for around $50 now. I must admit that I am somewhat of a gear nut, so I have used Nikon, Canon, Olympus, Fuji, and now it seems like I have settled into the Sony Mirrorless series. With all the adapters out there and since I prefer shooting manual mode, I have a lot of fun experimenting with some old vintage lenses that can be acquired quite reasonably in most cases. With focus peaking, it is elementary to get sharply focussed images with the quality glass of a vintage lens!







I have cameras all over the place. In my office, I have a display shelf about 8 feet long loaded with old 35mm, 110, Instamatics, digital cameras, underwater cameras, and more. That shelf is not enough, so there are more on another bookshelf, in cabinets, then even more in the garage. I collect, buy, sell, and trade cameras and also have a few that I use.


I enjoy the solid look and feel of vintage cameras, and I believe that every camera tells a unique story relating to the history of photographic art. We have seen a multitude of technological advancements, and the only constant is the human being with an eye positioned carefully on the viewfinder.


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© 2018 by Alan D Cline