Germinating Seeds of Photography
As a stereotypical picture-taking Asian, I have spent most of my social life armed with a camera. Whether it be a friend’s birthday party, a girls’ night out, or a dinner date, my Nikon Coolpix S200 is always at the ready. But when I look back at the albums, I am disappointed with the quality of the photographs. Most of them were taken haphazardly, without a second thought. Still, when I resolved to learn more about photography, I did not fully grasp the magnitude of the journey I had set out to begin. And now, as I work my way through How To Use Your 35mm Camera, a twenty-six-year-old beginner’s guide, I have come to realize that photography is no laughing matter.
To begin my exploration into the world of visual art, I have, supported by the approval of my dad, decided to stick with film. Good old-fashioned film. 35mm. Manual-focus. It all starts here. With my mom’s three-decade-old Minolta XG-M.
While I was working with the Minolta for my antique-camera photo shoot, I decided to bring out my dad’s beautiful Yashica Mat-124 G for its share of the spotlight. This gorgeous twin reflex lens (TRL) camera still takes amazing pictures, despite the fact that it is over thirty years old. In fact, we’ve never taken a family portrait without it. No wonder it can still go for as much as $400.
Here’s a close-up of the camera.
I’m too intimidated by the Yashica to carry it more than a few feet, let alone play around with it. So for now, in these germinating seeds of my journey into photography, I shall stick with the Minolta, which I think looks fabulously antique. Artsy, even.