[first published on http://www.JohnnyMartyr.com in 2015] The Agfa Optima Parat is a beautifully quirky compact, fixed lens, scale focus, 35mm half-frame camera, made in Germany in 1963. I bought mine in 2008 from Tina Waters, the curator of Gallery 61 in New York. I paid $70 for it as a tested, working copy and today, […]Read more "A Rave Review of the Agfa Optima Parat"
I stopped into my local camera repair shop last week to retrieve my Leitz Summarit which got damaged during my family trip to Disney earlier this year. Lev, the shop-owner told me that he had something I might be interested in. He brought out a little black Barnack Leica and I tried my best to keep […]Read more "A Brief History of my 1930 Leica I/III"
The Nikon FM10 is a camera that experienced/knowledgeable film photographers take pride in dismissing. The chorus is common: “It’s all plastic!” “It’s not even made by Nikon!” But look, what the vocal opponents don’t seem to get is that the Nikon FM10 is actually a highly evolved, practical camera, capable of terrific photos. And it […]Read more "Defending the Nikon FM10"
It’s been a few weeks since I retrieved my Konica III from BP-ES where it’s sticky shutter was repaired and rangefinder calibrated. I’m carrying the III with me daily, slowly working my way through a few rolls of Tri-X as I come across interesting scenes in my life. I have only owned one other Konica […]Read more "Behold, the Konica III"
Looking to get into 35mm film photography and wondering what camera to choose, from the dizzying array of possibilities? You’ve come to the right place! The following four first film camera suggestions are guaranteed to get you addicted to film and help you become a solid, knowledgeable shooter (with lots of practice and reading of […]Read more "Recommended First Film Cameras"
I have to begin with a confession; I have never been much of a TLR guy. I bought a Yashica 12 TLR while I was still in college and only had half a dozen cameras to my name. I enjoy the camera well enough but the reverse viewing nature of a twin lens just […]Read more "MiNT Instantflex TL70"
So you want to take some photos of the fireworks with your Fuji Instax instant film camera this Independence Day & you’re wondering how to do that. Well, you’re on the right track by studying up BEFORE loading up your camera & heading out to a fireworks show. While seasoned photographers who don’t shoot film anymore […]Read more "Photographing Fireworks with Fuji Instax"
At what point do we become photographers? If it’s when we take the first shots we’re proud of then my daughter Harper is well on her way! After years of playing with Mom and Dad’s cameras, Last week I finally purchased our four year old her first camera. I have always allowed Harper to handle our cameras […]Read more "A Four Year Old Photographer"
Trying something a bit different for this small project. I gathered an Underwood portable typewriter, a Zeiss Ikon folding camera, Bell rotary telephone and a General Electric electric fan. I set them out on a wood floor in my home and photographed these objects using three integral instant film cameras, a very new Fuji Instax Mini […]Read more "Camera. Typewriter. Telephone. Fan."
Stephanie and I arrived at the 9:30 Club in Washington DC just as Veruca Salt were going on stage. Outside the venue, I could hear the thundering bass and blazing rock guitars. Taped up on the walls all around Will Call were laminated 8×10 sheets of paper announcing “NO PRO PHOTO CAMERAS.” Determined to get […]Read more "Peeling Apart Veruca Salt"