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.