Your First Camera / Photography Experience

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous Equipment' started by Born2Late, Mar 1, 2013.

  1. Born2Late

    Born2Late Subscriber

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    I was thinking today about my first camera and photographic experience.

    My first camera was a Christmas present when I was maybe 7 or 8 years old. It was a simple plastic camera, the brand long forgotten. It was focus free and I think used 127 roll film. Of course it was equipped with a flash and I think came with a dozen flash bulbs. I believe that the only control was a color / B&W selector which controlled the aperture.


    I remember running around the house Christmas photographing anything I could find and getting into a bit of trouble for going through the first roll of film so quickly. Of course, there were no stores open on Christmas back then so I had to wait a day or two for more film. At that time you took your film to the drug store and it took what seemed like an eternity to get the photos back.

    I also remember that the flash bulbs had a plastic coating. The coating blistered up and gave off the most wonder smell when used.

    I've attached a photo from that fateful day.

    What a wonderful time.

    How about your experience??
     

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  2. Marvin

    Marvin Member

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    My first camera was a Kodak Brownie Holiday and it cost $6.00 and I had to Lay Away since I didn't have six bucks at the time. Paid it off in a couple of weeks and I was off and running. My first 35mm was a Kodak Retinette with a Schneider lens and shot many slides and pics with it and still have it. Mailed most of my film for processing to Jack Rabbit in Spartanburg, SC.
     
  3. Jeff Kubach

    Jeff Kubach Member

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    My first real camera was a Canon AE-1 and I started landscape and natural photos.

    Jeff
     
  4. Roger Thoms

    Roger Thoms Subscriber

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    I know I posted this in another thread, not my first camera, but an identical one purchased in a thrift store. Ok I got a sentimental. I was 6 or 7 years old and recieved the camera as a gift from a family friend, was totally blown away as I was quite sure cameras were for adults only. Still have vivid memories of photographing my Estes model rocket on the launch pad. The image was a little blurry because I was to close, but very cool just the same.

    Roger
     

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  5. limnidytis

    limnidytis Member

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    I recently found my first camera. Hard for me to believe, but I was cleaning out some boxes in a closet, and I came across some of my old cameras, including my Instamatic 100. I thought that this camera had long ago disappeared. I must have rescued this camera from my parents house at some point. I’m sure I saved it because I knew it was my first camera. My parents house went thorough several floods in the 1980’s and maybe that’s when I saved the camera. It looks like it’s been through a flood. The floods unfortunately destroyed some of my negatives, a lot of my Cibachrome prints and my sister’s darkroom. I thought the big boxes of family snapshots were also destroyed, but when I asked, my sister has saved a lot of the photos and negatives. She sent me one of the boxes and I managed to find one of my first photos. My parents gave me the camera in 1963 or 64 – I was in the 1st grade. The Instmatic 100 was the latest and greatest thing from Kodak – and perfect for a 6 year old. Nothing to adjust on the camera – just push the button and wind the film. My class had won a trip from the Grapette Company on the Reader Railroad (also amazingly still in business). I believe the image is from inside the caboose. I used to have some images from inside the coaches and along the route. Maybe I’ll find some of the other photos in one of the other boxes my sister has. There was a partially exposed roll of Kodacolor II in the camera – I finished off the roll and sent it to Film Rescue but nothing came out. Maybe I’ll have to find some film and try out the camera again. Finding the camera and photo just reminds me how you can’t just throw your digital photo is a big box in the cupboard and still have them 50 years later.
     
  6. jcoldslabs

    jcoldslabs Member

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    My first camera was Kodak Instamatic X-15F, a gift from my grandfather some time in 1977. It took 126 cartridges. I remember the yellow box it came in, and on the back of the camera were three small square indents where you could place your initials using the sheet of letter stickers that came in the box. I was so proud to personalize the camera that way and was very careful to put the stickers on straight. Pretty cheesy, really, but not to a nine year old!

    I have most of my early negatives, but they are hard for me to date precisely. The one below is of my little brother, so I think this must have been around 1978-79. Image scanned from the negative. (Image of the camera courtesy of Wikipedia.)

    Jonathan


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
     
  7. rthomas

    rthomas Member

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    My first camera was a Kodak Instamatic 100 that had belonged to my grandmother, I don't really know when it was given to me, probably the late 70s. I, too, got in trouble for shooting (wasting) too much film on photos of "silly" things. I put a lot of film through that little camera on many family vacations and just around the house. When I finally broke it at the age of 14, we threw it away and I did not get another camera of my own until I went off to college and bought a Nikon SLR. I have a sentimental attachment for the Instamatic for no good reason. I bought another one, the same model, at a yard sale for a dollar some years back just to have it. My replacement came with a demonstration cartridge that was presumably intended for camera dealers to show how easy it was to load the camera!
     
  8. hgernhardt

    hgernhardt Member

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    I don't know exactly when I got my first camera. I just know it was a hand-me-down.

    From my father.

    From his scuba days.

    It was an original Nikonos. Viewfinder with parallax markings, knobs on the sides of the lens barrel for focus and aperture. Shutter speed was set by the knob on top of the release, which had a funky winding method: You released the shutter by pressing in (towards camera rear) on the winding lever. You then allowed the winding lever to come away from the camera body clockwise until it came to a stop. The film was wound on by pressing the lever counter-clockwise until it came to the furthest stop, then relaxed to prepare for the next exposure.

    I was around six years old when I can first remember using it—around 1979 or 1980. I always shot in black and white. I had to guess focus, and since it had a depth of field scale, managed to figure out the concept of hyperfocal distance without much difficulty. Dad also taught me to use a light meter (a Sekonic 86 Auto-Lumi), so I learned the interrelationship of film speed, shutter speed, and f/stop. Strangely enough, I never learned the sunny sixteen rule until much later in life.
     
  9. Chrismat

    Chrismat Subscriber

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    I bought my first camera, a Polaroid Super Shooter in 1975 when I was 14. I saved up money I earned from delivering newspapers. I think I bought a pack of film a week. As soon the good folks at the local Brooks drug store saw coming me they would turn around and get ready to get a pack of color or black and white depending on how much money I had that week.
     
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  10. pgomena

    pgomena Member

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    My first camera was a Kodak Brownie World's Fair Flash Camera, released for the New York fair. My first real camera was a Minolta SRT-102, which I sometimes wish I still had.
     
  11. thegman

    thegman Member

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    My first camera was a Kodak Cameo 110 camera when I was about 13 maybe. I had no interest in photography and barely used it. Then a bit a over 3 years ago, I bought a Sigma DP-1. I went from that onto a Zeiss Ikon, and many cameras later, I'm in the process of getting my first 4x5...
     
  12. Born2Late

    Born2Late Subscriber

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    Yes, your guess is spot on. That is my maternal grandmother. She's been gone now for 30 years, almost to the day. She was picking up from the aftermath of Christmas gift opening.
     
  13. Peltigera

    Peltigera Member

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    My first camera was a cheap and nasty 120 camera - no idea as to the make. Only control was teh shutter release. I was either ten or eleven at the time and was blown away by the ability to get pictures without having to draw.
     
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  15. Truzi

    Truzi Subscriber

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    I put mine in the About Me section of my profile. I remember getting the camera more than it's first use.

    Basically, when I was very young (not sure how old, probably under 10) I wanted a camera. I asked my paternal Grandfather if he knew where I could get one for 50-cents.

    He went to the hall closet and came back with a Kodak Brownie (I think it was a Holiday). It turns out that it was my mother's when she was a child. I still have it somewhere - and if I dig it out will start using it again.

    I was thrilled to have a camera, and getting my film back was always exciting. I have a lot of blurry pictures because I often moved the camera a bit when pressing the button. I remember my dad commenting on that when I'd take pictures. I had no problem loading the film, though.
     
  16. ME Super

    ME Super Member

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    My first was a Kodak Instamatic (I don't remember which model). It took 126 film (I mostly shot Kodachrome in it!) and flashcubes. By the time I inherited it from my parents, the flash part of it didn't work. Next camera was a fixed-focus, fixed shutter speed (but variable aperture - F/16, 11, 8, and 6) 35mm. It was okay, but was replaced in 2 years (fall of '88) by a Pentax ME Super. The one I have the fondest memories of was the ME Super (obviously). My current one is also a Pentax - a PZ-20, but would love to get my hands on another ME Super.

    I would love to shoot square pictures with 35mm, but haven't seen any cameras that will let me do that. And cropping after shooting won't work because I shoot slides, so it needs to be a square mask so standard 35mm slide mounts can still be used. Heavy sigh.
     
  17. Kevin Caulfield

    Kevin Caulfield Subscriber

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    Mine was a Diana or one of the Diana variants. There is a photo of it in my gallery. My first outing using the camera was to the Melbourne Zoo.
     
  18. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    my first camera was a mickey mouse camera that you pulled down the ear to take the photograph
    it took 126 cassettes ( i think ? ) and i used it when i was about 5 maybe a little before my 5th birthday when we
    moved. a while later ( few cassettes of film ? ) i sold it for a few dollars at a yard sale and my mom gave me her hawkeye flashfun
    which i still have ( somewhere ). it took 127 film and was the camera i used until i was a freshman in high school, when i got a pentax k1000.
    i remember seeing the film from the flashfun, but have no idea where it ended up, it was in a drawer in "the museum" and when my parents moved
    a few years ago i grabbed the prints and have no idea where they were put ... i have my first k1000 rolls though, they were processed by me ...
     
  19. Clay2

    Clay2 Member

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  20. brucemuir

    brucemuir Member

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    We had instamatics and my ma had an actual 35mm Canon that looked like large format quality to me after 110 but MY first was a Polaroid Swinger.

    I still remember the little plastic tubes that held the coating sqeegee thing :smile:
     
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  21. pen s

    pen s Member

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    My first was a Kodak Brownie Bullet, a very simple 127 roll film camera. About 1960 I think, I was in 6th grade. Don't know what ever happened to it but in December 1969 I bought a Minolta Hi-matic 9, that lasted till the next summer when someone, I never found out who, spilled Pepsi on it and the repair would have been more than the camera. A little later I picked up a Miranda D used, with a 50mm f1.9 Soligor lens. I really liked the Miranda and wish I still had it. By 1974 I was into Olympus OM system and still have them. I also keep a small Pen F kit when I want to shoot half frame.
     
  22. Richard S. (rich815)

    Richard S. (rich815) Subscriber

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    My first serious camera was bought at age 15 in 1978 using my bar mitzvah money. Got a Pentax K1000 and a Pentax 50/1.8 lens plus a Vivitar 200mm lens. Almost went with a Fujica but could only afford one lens that route. Lusted over the Nikons but so far out of reach! Now I have two F2's, an F3HP and an FM2. Oh, and a Fujica ST801 that was given to me for free. Pentax K1000 is long gone...
     
  23. MartinCrabtree

    MartinCrabtree Member

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    In 7th grade I had a teacher who set up a darkroom and lent students who wanted it a camera. Showed us how to take photographs,develop and print the results. Then my uncle gave me a 35MM camera (which I still have) 'cause he heard I was interested. Now a own a few cameras,35MM,6X6 TLR and even a Polaroid SX-70 in stainless and leather. He was also into off-roading motorcycles and at 54 I still ride off road.

    Looked him up because of this thread and he died a couple years ago at 63. Too young. :sad:
     
  24. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    My first camera was a Zeiss Contax 11 my dad brought back from WW11 he had no idea how to use it and gave me it in 1952 and I taught myself from library books, I had it fully serviced about 20 years ago, I still have it and use it regularly , I recently used it to shoot my dads great grandchildren and thought a great deal about him and how he would have loved to see them.
     
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  25. MartinCrabtree

    MartinCrabtree Member

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    Ah the library. The only thing the government does right.
     
  26. Mustafa Umut Sarac

    Mustafa Umut Sarac Member

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    My first serious camera was Leica IIIF. I bought it for 400 dollars with uncoated Summitar. I bought it from a professor brang a coated Summitar also and a Leica R with Summicron. Than I bought another two III F s from him also. I preferred the uncoated one because thick glass was exciting as the crystal ball. I did not see a more mystic thing in my life. When buying or before buying , I did not ask anyone to buy it or not or which one. I was knowing what I was doing and sure about the picture quality.
    Than I sold the Leicas and bought two Magnum big prints from a Magnum Photographer Ara Guler. Auction house priced them after 20 years 12000 dollars. I made 400 dollars 12000 dollars and I was sure about what I was doing.