This is a picture of my sweet mama at age 12, the date on the back reads March 1962. I feel like I see Abbie in her face. She has her Kodak Brownie around her neck. This was her very first camera given to her by my grandpa a true camera enthusiast. He wanted everyone to enjoy photography at some level just as he did. My great Aunt Louise gave me this image of my mom. I found it while going through photo boxes last week. I asked my mom about it and she had never remembered seeing this image of herself. As we talked about it she told me I could have her Brownie, that she still had it and would in fact love for me inherit it. She told me she used it to shoot pictures of me when I was a baby with this very camera. Since it was her very first camera it was special to her and she took very good care of it. She takes very good care of all things. Like the best care ever. My mom told me she was just like me “I carried my camera the same as you do today, always looking for a good shot” Her dad, my grandpa loved the fact that she too loved photography like him and also had an eye. They would work in the darkroom together. He had transformed their bathroom into a darkroom, blacked out windows and they would develop in the sink and bathtub. She said the bathroom always smelt of developing chemicals and she can still smell it in her mind today. I love how smells bring back memories. I just recently found an old roll of film in one of my old cameras, got it developed and the first thing I did was smell the prints, not just once kept inhaling them and also remembering the darkroom.
These are the pictures below I found on my old Minolta. I couldn’t wait for them to be developed and was pleasantly surprised. They were of a great past time of ours. Dirt bike riding. This particular trip I had forgotten all about until I saw these old images. We had gone out with our long time friends Jon and Teri, she had just had her fourth baby. Three girls and the fourth later they got their little Jonny. This is a picture of Jon holding his boy. I look at these and think about how brave we were as young mothers. He was still so tiny yet Teri was willing to spend a weekend in the desert no hook ups just good old fun riding. We all did this sort of thing, no second thoughts, there was nothing we wouldn’t do with our babies. Brings me back to hikes in baby packs, tent camping with babies and all that sort of stuff. I miss it sometimes.
Below is the other sweet photo’s on that same roll. Abbie so tiny being fed water from the water pack. She would keep herself as busy as could be just in the desert sand.
Below is a picture of the Kodak Brownie I just inherited, only yesterday in fact. Today I tried to track down some film so I can try it out. I have to shoot my mom’s first camera, I just have to. So turns out 127 film isn’t easy to find. Kodak stopped making it in 1995, however a little place in Europe called Croatia still makes it under a name of Efke and I ordered a roll today. It was 20 dollars and it’s actually coming from Israel. I’m hoping it all works out. I’m also hoping I can find it closer and cheaper.
I got my photography interest from grandpa, my mom’s dad. He also gave me my first camera as a teen and I too still have the camera and the only thing wrong with it, it’s broken mirror which can probably be fixed and then it would be shootable . My first camera was a Yashica FR, I still have the manual even. I’m surprised with myself for keeping it all in one spot. I used my camera to shoot my friends, to shoot for yearbook staff and also one year of photo during high school. It was like second nature this camera. I could focus and snap a picture with ease and one of my favorite things to shoot was my little sister. She was a natural in front of the camera and such a doll.
And even more exciting than all of this, I also inherited a Canon A1 from my dad. It was the camera I watched him shoot when I was a kid. He had all these cool lenses, he also included, a nice case and the manual. I just needed to pick up a 6v battery, which I have done and I’m in business. So in the meantime before that roll of 127 arrives, I will be shooting the Canon and hoping it’s just like riding a bike and that I can remember how to work it and that my eyes are good so I can get my focus crisp. Let’s just say I’m beyond thrilled with the camera’s that have been handed down to me and I hope to keep them for my children and take the best care possible. My mom taught me pretty good that way.