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A reflection on the growth of my camera collection, and the growth of my person.

It started with a Holga…

Film camera #50 is en route…

Stop right there. It’s not as crazy as it sounds! Many of these were obtained at bargrain rates in thrift stores and antique shops. Prices have ranged from $3 to $30 on average, while big purchases like the LC-Wide and Horizon are far fewer. You spend your money on beer, on shoes, on travel, on vinyl records… Those things, they mean something to you, right?

Photo by j_rad

For me, cameras are not meaningless objects. They are tools with the ability to document, to make a record of the changing world. Imagine the history each of these pieces have; Their previous owners, the people and places they’ve been and “seen”. Consider next the places that I will take them, the things we will go.

It may seem that photography is all that I post about, all that I do… And in truth, I think that the art may define me. Though not a working professional in the field, I love the Camera, I love the Photograph. We are living in a digital world, in an age when we are best represented by our profiles on Facebook and LinkedIn. When we grow old and die, what remains? If all of our memories are stored on discs and drives… If all proof of our lives is preserved in pixels and bytes, then what’s left for the future generations? Moments are forgotten as memory fails, and as our colleagues disappear, so does our collective history.

When I die, I’ll leave behind hundreds, thousands of negatives and photographic prints, snapshots of my life. Will anybody care? Probably not. As stated previously, I’m no professional, and I hardly invest the time or care to create perfection. One could argue that I don’t even create “art”; I argue that such was never my intention. Many of my friends have projects, have vision, have themes. Me? I’m not saying anything. There’s no greater message, no subtext, no metaphor.

I just want to take a lot of pictures. I just want people to know where I’ve been, what I’ve seen, who I’ve laughed with, who I’ve slept with, and all the details of the beautiful world around me.

This world is chaos; It truly is. Poverty and corruption and disease and scandal and pain and death and overpopulation and extinction and pollution and fear and shame and bigotry and bias and oppression and blah blah blah and so on. It’s a crazy world, but hell; It’s beautiful, and it’s my world. These are the times we live in, and this is the way things are.

I’ll take my 50 cameras and I’ll keep shooting them. I’ll get better, and you’ll be able to see that improvement. Actually, that’s already visible now. Start at the last page of my Lomohome and work your way forward; The milestones in my life are quite clear. Obvious are the acquisitions of new (and better) cameras and lenses; I begin to experiment with new films, I adopt new techniques.

More notable than my growth as a photographer are the changes in my life and lifestyle. Every moment is documented and on display for you. Some friends come and go; Some faces pop up quite frequently, then disappear completely. Lovers and friends, each of them indicative of a point in time, in MY time. I move. I change. I endure. With these transitions, there is an accompanying change in the way that I perceive the world; If you look carefully, you can see the change in my heart and soul, as well. Photography has made me new friends, some of my BEST friends. It’s taken me to places that I’d never have been and opened my eyes to worlds that I may never have discovered on my own. I wouldn’t trade any of that for all the money in the world.

Photo by j_rad

I’m 28. It’s been 5 years since I purchased my first film camera, and the number of photographs taken each year has increased exponentially. By the time I’m 30, I expect that I’ll have taken twice as many photos as I have in all of the years prior combined.

Check in with me when I’m thirty-three. Perhaps I’ll be teaching photography; Perhaps not. No matter where I end up, no matter where I go, I’m sure that there’ll be a record of my activity. Should you and I lose touch… Should we forget to call or write or text or chat, you know where you can find me:

In the pictures.

Until then, stay shooting. Remeber, Lomography is not an interference in your life; It’s a part of it. Buy cameras, take photos, share them and show the world who you are and what 2012 felt like.

-Jared

And I still love the Holga.

escrito por lomographysf

20 comentarios

  1. lomographysf

    lomographysf

    I also love selling cameras, because I'm sharing my joy, my hobby with someone else. I can only hope that they come to take a lot of photographs themselves, that they share them with friends and family, and that they can eventually come to feel the way that I do.

    Hace más de 2 años · marcar como spam
  2. dollymixture

    dollymixture

    That was beautiful : )
    Dolly.

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  3. koduckgirl

    koduckgirl

    I couldn't agree more with this!! Great writing!

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  4. lomographysf

    lomographysf

    @dollymixture Thank you very much!

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  5. lomographysf

    lomographysf

    @koduckgirl Thank you, too. It's interesting that, even after all this time, I'm still quite stubborn in my insistence on shooting with film. I know that cell phones can make photography easy and convenient; It's definitely a pain to haul around a backpack full of cameras sometimes, but it's definitely a labor of love.

    Hace más de 2 años · marcar como spam
  6. koduckgirl

    koduckgirl

    there's nothing like film I am greatful to Lomography for making shooting with film more spontaneous and easy going as opposed to how it used to be only for pros or stuffy and rule of thirds rigid much like how writing used to be till Lewis Carroll came along ha ha ha
    I admit I take a ton of shots with my iPhone as well cuz I also like seeing them immediately and my D70 taught me more than film about the technique of photography cuz with film you take a roll and then wait till they are developed and you cant remember what each shot's aperture or shutter was at shooting and I certainly was not going to carry a notebook...with the D70 you see the result of the aperture choice right away
    people think I am a nut for paying for film development but like I said nothing beats film esp in the multi x and xpro dept
    cheers
    kdg aka pearl

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  7. justevans

    justevans

    well said Jared.

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  8. lomographysf

    lomographysf

    @justevans Thanks Evan!

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  9. schemerel

    schemerel

    thank you for making me feel less crazy.

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  10. lomographysf

    lomographysf

    @schemerel You're welcome! Although, does that make me crazy by implication? If loving cameras is crazy, lock me up and throw away the key.

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  11. schemerel

    schemerel

    My boyfriend thinks I'm crazy because I can't stop buying cameras (but he might just be a little jealous because my collection is bigger than his :)
    Yesterday I told him I think my olympus trip 35 is super sexy and he was looking at me like he was about to go get me a straightjacket.

    Yesterday I found a lubitel 2 online and it kept me up all night looking at it, reading reviews, waiting for the seller to answer my desperate emails to not sell the thing to anyone else but me and sometimes I want a camera/lens/film so bad it acually phisically hurts and I can't think/talk about anything else.
    ok maybe I am a little bit coocoo.

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  12. lomographysf

    lomographysf

    @schemerel The Olympus Trip 35 is sexy! I think it's the selenium cells around the lens. I also really love the Ricoh Auto Half (if you haven't seen that one, Google it). I'm excited for you to get a Lubitel... I own a Lubitel 166 Universal and it changed my world. I hope that one works out! Don't stress too much, though; There are always more cameras out there, especially in the case of the Lubitel, so if one passes you up... Just know that there's another one out there for you. The one that you get is the one meant for you!

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  13. schemerel

    schemerel

    I won the lubitel for 20 euro's, I'm going to pick it up monday in Antwerp, which happens to be where our first Belgian lomography gallery store is. Im going to have to superglue my wallet shut.
    That ricoh looks great !

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  14. superkulisap

    superkulisap

    @schemerel I can relate to your experience :)
    Me and my girlfriend almost broke up like almost 2 years ago because of my growing collection of cameras and my burning passion on film. She thought that I'm spending more time with my cameras than her. She eventually realized that shooting film is not really what I want do, but it is what I need to do. Like almost everyone in this community, shooting film is not just driven by our will, but by destiny.

    @lomographysf very nice articel Jared. Very nice outlook in life and photography.

    Cheers from Manila!

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  15. lomographysf

    lomographysf

    @superkulisap Thanks for the response. We do so love our cameras here... and it's not just me! Nicolas has a collection that's growing rapidly as well. He surely has 20 or more cameras at this point. All of our staff are film enthusiasts, and we collect everything from Lomo to Polaroid to vintage folders and medium format rangefinder. It's necessity!

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  16. guinastrapazi

    guinastrapazi

    i really loved what you've writed here.. ♥
    :)) that was beautiful

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  17. lomographysf

    lomographysf

    @guinastrapazi Thank you very much! The past few years have been a great to me and I've really love to appreciate how photography improves my life.

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  18. trw

    trw

    Great article! I really appreciate knowing that I'm not alone in my love of cameras. As I've spent more time in this community I've come to really appreciate the diversity and joy of discovery of a new camera (or a new type of film for that matter).

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  19. lomographysf

    lomographysf

    @trw Thanks! Lomography is definitely the home and haven for all the people, like you and I, who LOVE cameras and love film. I'm happy to have worked for a company that really inspires and brings happiness to so many people around the world.

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  20. guinastrapazi

    guinastrapazi

    i'm in love with you all, guys.. you're amazing
    "not just driven by our will, but by destiny" very well said Sir! @superkulisap
    and @schemerel : buying cameras is like an addiction.. i (only) own 4 cameras.. and when i think of all those great cameras which are -somewhere- out there, that makes me almost a bit crazy .. because i want them all lol ;D

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