Wednesday, 6 August 2008

Snappy camera

My first camera - a snappy camera - cost 2/6d* (two shillings and sixpence; half a crown; half a dollar - take your pick). I got it from Woolworths on a day excursion to Belfast. I could hardly wait to take it to school the next day. My pride and excitement vanished on observing the class clown displaying his brand new snappy camera! Worse to come - he had a case for it and a strap so he could hang it round his neck. Since I had no camera case my little camera stayed in my schoolbag.

I was thinking about my snappy camera when browsing the various groups on flickr who try and reproduce through digital manipulation the kind of photographic effect got from mass produced cameras - lomo and holga.

My mother didn't think I could actually take photos with it but I whined and begged until I got a film and then had to whine and beg until she got them processed for me. The only photo I can clearly remember from that first and only batch was an electricity van parked outside our library. Now hang on, it wasn't a library then it was a catering college.

The van was out of focus and tilted from the horizontal but it must have been the best of the bunch if that is the only one I remember. There weren't any more photos from the snappy camera as there was a growing awareness that my mother wasn't trying to spoil my fun but she could not afford to indulge a small boy's hobbies.


My back is still sore. I was out for a walk yesterday and felt fine. Today I am shuffling again. A short Tai Chi exercise eased it a while ago but I feel it stiffening again.

*Memory decay - the camera might have cost 7/6d

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