Last year, I stumbled more or less by accident into my old analogue cameras on the attic. Although I also use a digital SLR, I could not resist to pick up those old cameras again to take pictures!
The first camera I got as a gift on my eleventh birthday was a Kodak Pocket B-1 camera. It used the then popular 110 format film cassettes. Changing these cassettes was so simple that even a child could do it. Also making pictures was child’s play: a large blue button to shoot and a little wheel to the advance the film, there are no more buttons on it!
My first family picture was not so great in terms of composition, but a few years later in Paris it got a lot better already. I have now shot a few months ago a roll Lomography Color Tiger with it, and the results did not disappoint. Nice to see that Lomography has breathed a whole new life into this format.
A few years later I had saved money enough with delivering newspapers for a second hand SLR. It was a Minolta XG-2 with aperture priority mode. The black and white photos I made with this camera I also printed myself in the darkroom in high school.
I also used my Minolta a lot during my study, but unfortunately during a study trip to China and Hong Kong the light meter of the camera broke down. Fortunately, I was able to buy a Seagull DF-300x body there, a Chinese license from the Minolta X-300, which I could also use with my Minolta lenses.
Now, as I look back at those pictures from China, I suspect I left it at the lowest ISO (factory) setting of 12 initially, given the significant overexposure of the first roll with the Seagull. The following rolls were well exposed, fortunately.
Now almost twenty years later, the Seagull (in the photo with Fritz the Blitz 2.0 flash) does not give any sign of life anymore, even with new batteries. The older Minolta XG-2 is still working, and I used it to take the pictures from my camera collection. The metering is broken, so only the manual setting for aperture and shutter speed can be done, possibly by with the help of the light meter of another (digital) camera or smartphone for the correct settings. There are some light leaks visible on most photos, but that can be remedied by renewing the sealing myself.
In my old camera bag I also found a little blue compact camera, probably a gift for opening a savings account at the Postbank. That camera went with us last year on holiday to France, filled with an expired roll of Kodacolor Gold. The “panorama 35mm” (imprint in the front) can be achieved with a removable mask which covers the top and bottom of the 35mm film.
When my parents-in-law heard that I was active with old cameras and film rolls again, they also found two old cameras, which they were glad to give to me. So now I also have a Polaroid 1000 camera and a Minolta Riva Zoom 70 (with 35-70 zoom and autofocus!) included in my collection.
For the Polaroid new kits with instant photo paper are now available again from The Impossible Project in the Netherlands, so I have ordered some. I am wondering what surprises these old cameras will give!
And I also used some Piggy Points for the purchase of my first new Lomography camera, a sleek black La Sardina 8-Ball with Fritz the Blitz 2.0 flash. So it will become difficult to choose which camera(s) to carry with me on my Lomo walks!