I’ve loved photography from a young age. My first memory with a camera was when I visited Woborn Safari Park aged 7 and was taking photographs of the giraffes eating their food. I got so excited I actually dropped my parents brand new digital camera and dented the side. Must of been a sturdy thing because it didn’t break, but the dent was certainly substantial!
My Grandad had a similar passion for photography. At all the family functions he would be designated photographer, and throughout his whole life he was the one to document everything that went on around him. In his old age he has become less able to pursue his hobby, but was so happy when I told him I was taking up A-Level Photography. So two years ago, he invited me round and gifted me all of his old cameras. I couldn’t believe it, I was so grateful and humbled. It was an amazing gift, and really motivated me to work hard.
Some of them work, some of them I am still working on, but mostly they are there as a reminder that my Grandad believes in me and I should keep going. One day I hope to use them all as fully functional cameras and use them in some of my projects.
POLAROID COLOUR SWINGER LAND CAMERA
Surprisingly, what with the uprising trend of taking Polaroid photos, I haven’t tried out this camera yet. I’ve never taken a Polaroid photo and never worked with them during my A-Levels, but this year it’s one of my goals to get this one working. The major downside with this camera is that Polaroid papers are ridiculously expensive.
PRAKTICA LB 2
This one I managed to get working again. I think thing is my favourite one out of the collection – I was familiar with how it worked from using similar equipment in classes, and just love how it feels. That sounds totally weird, but it’s a real pleasure to take photos with, and the 2.6/50 lens is really cool. I had to clean out and tweak the inside a bit, but it was mostly just a case of a new roll of film. I’m super excited to get some photos developed from this.
This one looks more like your modern day digital camera and in some ways works like one too. It uses film, but it has a battery, and I think unfortunately the battery component has broken. I ordered new batteries for it but they haven’t work, and neither has tweaking it and replacing film. This is camera is definitely a project for me because I’m desperate to get it working again.
PRINZ MASTERMATIC III
This one wasn’t from my Grandad, but I wanted to include it because it was a lovely gift from one of my high-school best friends and I absolutely adore it. It’s super cute and tiny, and together, we managed to get this one working. I remember our photography teacher was obsessed with it and took loads of photos with it. It’s really compact, lightweight and portable, making it easy to take as an accompanying camera on shoots to try out something new. I’d really like to use this camera more and get some photos developed.
So there’s my little vintage film camera collection. I’m very lucky to have such a library of equipment I can use! I’d really like to use them more and expand my knowledge:)
Do you have any cool vintage photography tools?
I’d love to discuss in the comments!