Photoshop Elements has added yet another boon, the ability to "fix" photos that are not quite perfect. Some photo opportunities won't wait for you to keep shooting (our little porch lizards for instance, will
only hold still for so long). My little Fuji does an amazing job with available light, but the automatic settings just wont' work well with very low light sunrises or sunsets. Photoshop Elements (PSE) allows me to take photos at two different settings then blend them for that just right in between. (This is called "Bracketing"). I could go on, and on, and on with this subject, sometimes I do.
My obsession started several years before I got my first camera. I must admit, there was a little bit of jealousy involved. My family was getting ready to go to my big brother Jimmy's house for Christmas.
let me use hers. (In retrospect, my Dad was right, I really wasn't very careful with things back then).
This was one of those little things that makes a big difference. If I had got my own way back then, the camera probably would have become just one more thing that I tired of and that would have been that. When we returned to Utah after the trip, my obsession did not go away. Since I didn't have a camera, I found a book in the library that told how to make one from a box, or how to use the sun to take photos of leaves, (wish I knew the name of that book now, I would love to see it again). I did not
Fast forward to the summer I turned 13. My Dad and big brother Pete were replacing the roof on the garage and Dad "needed a helper". He offered to buy me a camera of my own if I would clean up the shingles and old nails as they tossed them down.
You bet I would! I earned a Kodak 110 Instamatic
camera. It came in a display box with a role of film and flash cubes. (Do you remember flash cubes?)
Dad was not in the habit of bribing us to work, if he told us to do it, we were expected to do it with a smile on our faces. We were a family and we all worked together to accomplish things. Most of the time I was growing up, we did not even get an allowance. When we did, it was not associated with chores, we did them regardless. It had not occurred to me until just now to wonder why he "paid" me to help with the garage. Not only that, but I think the
cost of the camera was probably out of proportion to the amount of work I did. The only thing I can come up with is that Dad knew I would appreciate it more if I earned it. He was right.
My Father was also obsessed with photography in all of it's forms. Most of the cameras pictured on these pages were his. I have, literally, hundreds of slides that he took when we were growing up. He died December 30th the same year I received that first camera. The last pictures we have of him were taken with it.
The following year, Mom and I went to California to
Within a couple of months, my babysitting money went to buy a Polaroid at a yard sell and I was back in business. I could not take as many photos, there were only 8 photos in a cartridge and the cartridges
were not cheap. You did not have to pay for developing, but I think it still worked out more expensive that way. It didn't matter, I could take pictures again.
Then the Fuji arrived! The fun is just beginning. The collection from Photo #1. The Petri. #2. is an old German camera from World War II. #3 is I believe, a "Baby Brownie" that was my Husbands first camera. #4. The Argoflex belonged to his Mother. One of the sweetest ladies that ever lived. I can just see her holding this. #5. Keystone Capri 8mm movie camera. It was operated with a hand crank. I have several films my Dad made with this, but no way to watch them. Knowing him, they could be anything so I would like to see what is on them before I have them copied to disk. #5. Nikon One Touch Zoom 90s, sitting on the dashboard of the camper van. #6. Cake I decorated with a camera, told you I was obsessed. #7. Dad's old box camera with a photo of my Mom when she graduated from High School. #8. Part of the box, the instruction manual and a Kodak Magazine that came with the box camera when it was new. I did have the entire box with all this stuff in it, but it was attacked by mildew in Great Britain, the box fell apart. I am so glad that all it got was the box. #9. Pride of the collection. This is a Polaroid Land Camera, complete with it's case, flash, diffuser, and a lens filter. I researched it on line and found out it was produced in the 1950's. I think this is one of the most beautiful pieces of engineering ever. It is also from my Dad's collection.