So it all started with a conversation. A simple conversation.
Myself and Nick were having a beer and talking about cameras. We did that a lot. He asked where my M3 was.
You see, I had sold it. I bought it because it was cheap and I was poor. I bought it because it was battered and that made it cheap. I bought it because I had met someone that inspired me to go back to my roots. I bought it to forget about gear for a while.
I bought it on a whim. It was one of those things I decided in five minutes after having seen it in a shop window. It was my friend’s shop. I fondled it for a while. It was both weirdly rough looking and brand new feeling at the same time. Strange.
I bought it and used it. The first roll I shot in a park near my house. I took photos as we walked. Had been a while since I’d shot film. Also been a while since I’d shot without a meter.
I went home and developed. Had been a long time since I’d done that as well.
It felt great.
A month later I was in Busan. I was supposed to be taking photos for a magazine. Still life photographs of fish. I left the Ricoh I had brought in my bag and just shot a roll.
Forgot about the project.
There is much to be said about a camera. About the life of a camera. Just “tools” technically but I do believe one can be more.
It is kind of like the way a car can feel like it has a soul. The longer you spend with a car, the more memories you make in it, the more it starts to feel like it is more than just an engine and seats.
This isn’t an argument for film. It has nothing to do with the medium. Film is just the fuel.
It won’t be long before our cars don’t need that either.
Flash forward back to Nick and I drinking and talking about cameras. He asked me why I’d sold the camera. I didn’t have a good reason. I bought another because I thought it would be newer and nicer since I could then afford it. Was weird though, I had always thought about that first one. The photos never were the same after that.
He saw the look on my face.
“Let’s go get it tomorrow.”
You see, I had told him that it was still at my friend’s shop. He bought it back from me but hadn’t been able to sell it. The camera looked like it had been dropped and then the previous owner had tried to sand down the dent. The camera was otherwise new. This wasn’t a sand job to show brass (equally horrible) but a butchering to get rid of a dent. Koreans don’t like this kind of thing very much.
Anyway, we went the next day and I got it back.
Four months ago now and not a day goes by I don’t fondle my M3 with a beer. It has since been painted, but I asked the damaged vulcanite be kept so I could still recognize it.
We have been busy making memories, so haven’t had too much time to blog. Ironically Nick’s 50mm Summilux now resides on the front. A more fitting combination I cannot imagine. All goes to the story.
The story of a camera.
And a beer.
Stay tuned for my next post about Halloween, 2017. Photos from – you guessed it – my M3 and Nick’s 50 ;).