This was the very first photo taken with my Canon 20D when it was brand new, right out of the box on November 14, 2005. I love, love, love my camera, almost unhealthily so. I have a passion for it and love the weight of it, the look of it, the feel of it. It's comfortable in my hand. It's almost as though it's an additional appendage. It's a part of me. It's intrinsically connected to my heart, my eyes, my hands and my soul. The only object that comes remarkably close to this same sort of intimate relationship with an electronic device is the one I share with my iPod, but that's another post entirely.
My first camera was a Yashica FX something 35mm with 3 lenses: 55mm, 28mm and a 70-135mm zoom. That camera documented much of my young adulthood, capturing driftwood and campfires and beaches and lakes and spiders - gosh, the same sorts of things I shoot now. That camera was my constant companion until it developed a serious light leak so she's up on a shelf now. She still receives a good dusting and gentle caresses now and then.
After I reluctantly retired the Yashica I was without a camera for many years. Looking back, those were turbulent times with lots of drifting and seeking...and not finding...myself. In hindsight, and I don't need a "Hindsight Committee" to figure this out, I believe it was because I wasn't out in the field doing what I love. No campfires, no water or lakes, no photography, nothing. It was work and school and work and work and school and actually going out and getting plastered with people I didn't really like. I wasn't me, and I was miserable.
A change of friends helped, as did a new career. Then Bob came into my life and I began to settle. After we were married he gave me a new camera - a Canon Elan II EOS with a sweet 100-300 zoom and a 55mm lens. Oh, wow! Oh, yeah! I played with that for a few years and then along came the first digital into the household when my tech-head husband HAD to buy a Sony Cybershot 5.0 megapixel.
I scoffed. Puh-lease.......that's not a "real" camera, I said in my snottiest voice complete with elitist attitude. Ahem, I'm a PHOTOGRAPHER, honey. Cough, cough. I ignored the little Sony completely, and continued to drive my film into town, picking it up days later and though I was always, always unhappy with the results I kept my unhappiness a secret. I went so far as to consider and plan my own darkroom I was so displeased with my prints.
I can't remember what possessed me to try the Sony but one day I did. That's when I discovered something called Immediate Gratification. Sometime later I discovered Photoshop. Then I got the Canon 20D. Now I want a Canon 40D body. I'm in digital heaven, and I'm loving it. It's completely addictive, and I know many of you are nodding your heads and saying Amen! This isn't to say that film cameras are bad, or poloroids are bad - I'm just not gifted with those mediums. Not to suggest that I'm "gifted" with digital, but that it's simply bringing pleasure and joy into my life.
These days my Canon Elan II sits beside the Yashica and I dust them often, and sometimes I hold them, look through their eyepiece and silently say "Thank you." (to say that out loud would raise eyebrows) Who knows...one day I may take the Canon Elan II out for a spin and see what comes of it.