Club Garden Walk, Sheffield, June 2017 – Nikon F3HP, Nikkor 50mm f/1.8, 1/60s, f4, +1EV, Lomography Color 400 rated at ISO 200
St. Paul’s Place, Sheffield, March 2017 – Olympus Trip 35, Ilford Pan F plus
An image from one of the three rolls I shot on Expired Film Day this year. The Pan F was the least out of date roll I used, it expired in 2007!
‘Of course, there will always be those who look only at technique, who ask “how”, while others of a more curious nature will ask “why”. Personally, I have always preferred inspiration to information.’
Man Ray (American visual artist) – August 27, 1890 – November 18, 1976.
A few days ago my father piped up ‘let’s go to the auctions, I’ve never been to one before…’
Neither had I, so off we trot to the local auction house which was holding a sale of die-cast model cars, toy trains, huge live-steam model traction engines and dolls… and as it turns out… cameras.
I spotted a few things that might be of interest: Mamiya TLRs, Leica SLRs, a box of assorted Nikons and a few odd lenses. I spent 40 minutes perusing the more obvious items and then in a moment of (potentially expensive) madness, I found myself registering as a bidder!
The auction proper started at 10am and by 10.45 the auctioneer had rattled through 50 lots, mainly vintage Dinky and Corgi toys and I was fascinated!
Next came the dolls and then the cameras… a couple of plate cameras preceded a number of Leicas, then it was on to the Mamiyas: C220, C330, 645 1000S and a variety of lenses went under the hammer as did a number of Rollei TLRs before it was the turn of the Nikons…
A pair of FMs, an F2 plus 50mm f/2 lens, and an F3 plus 50mm f/1.8 all sold quickly as did a Nikkor 105mm f/2.5 lens (which I was tempted by) and then there was this…
The Zoom-Nikkor 80~200mm f/4.5 lens is, according to Nikon Ambassador B. Moose Peterson‘s Magic Lantern guide book to Nikon Lenses, firmly in the “Oldies but Goodies” category.
This is the post-1977 version of the lens with 12 elements (in 9 groups) and NIC multi-coating, giving better image quality than earlier models, it’s also 80g lighter, weighing in at ‘only’ 750g!
Bidding began (and ended) at £30 and yes, I was the only bidder… the lens needs a good clean but I think it’s time to dig out my Nikon F3 to mount it on, don’t you?
St. Martin’s Lane, York, December 2016 – Olympus μ[mju:]-II, Fuji Neopan 400CN
‘Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst.’
Henri Cartier-Bresson (French photographer) – August 22, 1908 – August 3, 2004.
The past few years have seen me becoming a bit of a repository for old photographic equipment, a rest home for elderly cameras and lenses, out of date rolls of film, instruction books and odd accessories. ‘You’re into photography, can you use this?’ is something I’ve heard a lot and the hoarder in me just can’t turn potentially useful things away…
My wife is adamant that I’ve lost track of what I’ve got and if I’m honest she’s probably right as a couple of nights ago I was rummaging through a box, looking for something else and I found these…
Two Olympus OM lenses, a Zuiko Auto-T 135mm f/3.5 and a G.Zuiko Auto-W 28mm f/3.5 complete with genuine caps and a hood for the 28mm.
Needless to say they’ve gone straight into my bag along with my recent OM-1N find and will be getting used sooner rather than later!
18 years ago yesterday I picked up the keys to a small ‘two up, two down’ terraced house in a nondescript little town in the centre of England… that small house quickly became a home and my wife and I still live in it today…
The town is unremarkable in every way, no major historical events have ever taken place here, no huge stars of stage and screen have ever called it home, the town’s Wikipedia page seems to struggle to come up with much that relates to the town as it is today, the major industries that once provided employment for thousands are (in the main) long gone…
It’s still ‘home’ though, for all its flaws and shortcomings, for all its noise and dirt and litter.
Centaurea montana (perennial cornflower) – Olympus OM-1N, F.Zuiko 50mm f/1.8 Auto-S – 1/125s, f8½ – O.O.D. Fujicolor C200 rated at ISO 100
There are little pleasures to be had here though… the local pub is always welcoming, on a still night I can lie in bed and hear owls hooting in the small patch of woodland a few streets away and there are forgotten corners that provide endless photographic opportunities for folk like me that never leave the house without a camera…
The above shot is another from the first test roll through my charity shop find Olympus OM-1N. It was taken in the local churchyard on a beautiful summer afternoon and in spite of the church being smack in the centre of town I had the place to myself for a good hour!
‘I never, ever went out without my camera, even to buy bread.’
Willy Ronis (French photographer) – August 14, 1910 – September 12, 2009.
I first became acquainted with the OM series of cameras over 30 years ago when I inherited and OM-1N from my then girlfriend’s late father, it replaced an increasingly unreliable Zenit TTL and I absolutely loved using it!
In my late teens I fell out of love with photography (and the girlfriend) and parted company with the Olympus but always had a soft spot for its simple, rugged yet beautiful design.
Recently a friend tipped me off to an ‘old Olympus camera’ in a local charity shop and I was thrilled to discover this…
Olympus OM-1N + F.Zuiko 50mm f/1.8 Auto-S
What an absolute beauty! I immediately loaded up an out of date roll of Fujicolor C200 and happily snapped the afternoon away.
I’d almost forgotten how nicely the OM cameras handle… aperture, focus and shutter speed can all be adjusted without taking the camera from the eye and without sacrificing a comfortable grip on the camera/lens combination. The positioning of the shutter speed ring may be unconventional but it works fantastically well!
Olympus OM-1N – top view showing placement of controls
As you might expect there’s nothing stellar on that first test roll but this shot (un-cropped, un-tweaked and straight from the scanner) is the first, taken within seconds of me parting with my money… hopefully I’ll get a lot more use out of this blast from the past during what remains of the English summer!
Bath Street – Olympus OM-1N, F.Zuiko 50mm f/1.8 Auto-S – 1/125s, f11 – O.O.D. Fujicolor C200
Postscript: I’ve since managed to pick up (for an absolute song!) another Zuiko lens, the Auto-zoom 35~70mm f/4 and I can’t wait to try it out!