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Thread: Which camera has inspired you the most?

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    Which camera has inspired you the most?

    Just something I was thinking about tonight.
    Some cameras 'just click' whilst others can be much better from a technical point of view but are lacking in soul.

    So; was it that box brownie from your grannies attic, the Leica MP you saved up years to buy, that delicious E1 or your nice new Phase with a P65+

    Tell us what presses your shutter!

    Just this guy you know

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    Jono,

    None. There will never be one either.

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    The venerable E-1!

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    Cameras do not "inspire" me ... though sometimes they may evoke some technical faszination of the little boy in me...
    A camera should follow the way I want to shoot - I don't like cameras that force me to operate them in a particular way. I am really not inflexible... actually I can adapt quite easy to any kind of gear. But still... I have preferences.
    I like aperture rings on the lens (very much).
    I like cameras where everything is in place... without complicated menus.
    I like exchangable finders.
    Pentax LX... Contax 645... tech cameras... that's what I like.

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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    The next one ...

    Actually the Leica M8 - M9 have been pretty inspirational in terms of pure photographic enjoyment. I love my MP but the digital connection is strong.

    Photographically I think that my Mamiya 645AFD/Kodak 645M combination probably had me visiting more photogenic locations at prime golden light times than any other system I've ever owned. The love/hate relationship with that camera/back has produced the highest keeper print rate than anything that has followed.

    Lastly, my Canon AE-1 for starting the journey ...

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    I don't know that cameras "inspire" me. Some have proven to be very nice to use. At present, all of my cameras do it well ... Olympus E-1, Panasonic L1, Panasonic G1, Minox EC and C ...

    I wanted a Hasselblad SuperWide from the first day I saw one in 1967. Finally got one in 2002. Loved working with it. But it was at the inflection point when I was turning to digital capture entirely and found that I used it for a year and then it sat on the shelf. I sold it to finance other equipment and endeavors while I was still able to recoup 95% of what I'd paid for it. It's probably the only film camera I have occasional second thoughts about selling because it was just a fun camera to use. But if I really needed or wanted one, I'd find another.

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    Two, at different times in my life:

    1962 - Contaflex Beta - converted me to 35mm from the roll film formats I had been using.

    1978 - Hasselblad - finally could afford one, and have used it happily ever since.

    - Leigh

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    Subscriber Member Jorgen Udvang's Avatar
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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    I've had three cameras with "soul":

    The grey Rolleiflex Baby, which I sold when 127 film became difficult to find. Always regretted that, and in retrospect, I've always wondered how I could get exposure spot on without metering of any kind.

    The OM-1, which was my main camera for 30 years. Although I had other lenses, I hardly used anything but the 50mm f/1.8. In the end, it was simply worn out, and replaced by an OM-3, which was a better camera, but not as loved as the OM-1.

    The E-1. The most undervalued camera ever. A perfect travel companion, just like the OM-1, and with the 11-22mm, not much more was needed. I usually brought an OM 100mm f/2.8 too, in case I wanted to take photos of faraway places

    And now? The Pentax K-7 has potential. If money allows, and preferably if Pentax gives it a better sensor, I will probably try, but not this year.

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    My first was the Yashica TL-Electro that got me hooked on photography.

    My Leica M8 was the realization of a dream and a lesson in returning to the roots of photography. It made me a photographer again instead of a button monkey.

    My Nikon D700 allowed me to capture the world of dance.

    My journey continues, hopefully into the world of MFD.
    Carlos Echenique | Carlos Echenique Photography |Olympus OM-D E-M1 MK II | Olympus Pen-F - M.Zuiko 17mm f/1.8, M.Zuiko 25mm f/1.8, M.Zuiko 45mm f/1.8, Rokinon 12mm f/2 NCS, M.Zuiko 75mm f/1.8, M.Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8 PRO, M.Zuiko 40-150mm f/2.8 PRO

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    Canon A-1, only camera I ever loved.
    I am not a painter, nor an artist. Therefore I can see straight, and that may be my undoing. - Alfred Stieglitz

    Website: http://www.timelessjewishart.com

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    Fair question Jono
    simple answer - ALL of them -

    otherwise I wouldn't bother!

    Pete

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    Interesting replies.
    I think it's an interesting subject, not quite sure how much it has to do with photography maybe it's more to do with 'things' - like having a nice pen to write with, or a nice computer to use - to some people it's really only the functionality that's important (Vivek?). I actually mind what I use very much, and like to have nice things about me.

    For me, I think the Contax 139 I had in the 70s and Contax RTSII I had in the 90s did it for me. Then definitely the Olympus E1.

    Now I think that my rather bashed up black M9 just about makes it.

    Just this guy you know

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    Right after thinking "it is about capturing interesting images, not the camera", I had to admit the Canon S90 was what rekindled an interest in photography.

    The S90 performs decently, but the important thing is it fits in a pocket and is always ready. After taking a couple hundred pictures, the bug to capture good images had asserted itself fully...

    You quickly realize that equipment limits often stand between you and a good image, so knowing equipment capabilities is important. But, the object is still about capturing interesting images. That is what gets you out the door and looking at the world.

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    Senior Member Lisa's Avatar
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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    The camera that inspires me is the one that I'm so experienced with that I can just take the photo without a lot of fussing around with it; the camera that just takes a good picture without being an intrusive part of the process. For me, it's my trusty Nikon D300 & IR-converted D200. Now & then I try a smaller camera (because the D200/D300 is a little too heavy for comfort for me), but I just can't get past getting frustrated with my unfamiliarity with it before I just go back to my D300 & D200. (That's why my Panny GH-1 is still sitting on the shelf - I do mean to get back to practicing with it more one of these days...)

    Lisa

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    They all do. I wouldn't have bought any of them if I didn't feel strongly about them. They each have their own special characteristics and personality. Each one of them does something that the others do not - the funny little apps for my iPhone camera, the dreaminess and mystery of my pinhole camera, the wide perspective of my panoramic camera, the overall image quality of my Canon, the ability to see beyond the frame of my M6, the mystifying lack of weight and size of my little pink Superheadz Wide & Slim... I love them all, and they all inspire me.

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    Deardorff 4x5/5x7 field camera. This got me into large format. I now shoot with a 4x5 Chamonix instead (for a number of reasons), but this has been the greatest inspiration to what and how I work today as a fine art photographer.

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    Cameras that inspired me as a pure mechanical device?
    Sony A900
    Nikon F3
    Canon EOS 1vHS (this was the first camera I had that seemed to see the world the same way I did)
    Hasselblad 501c/m

    Cameras that created images that made my jaw drop?
    Fuji GSW690III
    Sinar F2
    Leica DMR

    As I have said before, the Sony A900 is the best overall camera I have used because most of the time it doesn't get in the way.

    Edit: I should add that if there is one camera that changed my life it was a Nikon FM. Small and light. Everything I really needed, nothing I didn't. Always with me. RIP little buddy.
    Last edited by Bill_Green; 31st August 2010 at 09:37.

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    Senior Member bradhusick's Avatar
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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    Two cameras changed my photographic life forever...

    The first was the Nikon D1 - the first digital SLR. What freedom to experiment!!!

    The second was the Epson R-D1. Combining rangefinder and digital was brilliant. Then came the M8, M8.2 and M9. Rangefinder photography is liberating.

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    Reminds me of the car commercial where the spokesperson asks - "when you turn your car on does it return the favor?".

    My answer to that has always been my Cambo WRS1000/P45+ and I've now decided to add the Leica M9 to that list.

    Might not answer you question but it's close...


    Don
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    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    The camera that inspired me to explore photography to begin with was a Boy Scout Brownie in around 1963. The camera that got me into a state of creating serious images was a Nikon FE. The camera that taught me the most about photography and creating images was my first 4x5, a Linhof Technikardan.
    Jack
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    Senior Subscriber Member Steen's Avatar
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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    In the early-to-mid-60s I learned for the first time controlled photograpy with an Exakta IIa.




    Later, around ~ 1967, came a Nikon F mount Nikkormat, which was the system that made me seriously hooked on photography.

    That Nikon F mount system has definitely been my greatest tool for film based photography, especially my favorite optic, a wonderful, fast, manual focus Nikkor 85mm lens.

    It was that lens that opened my eyes to optical rendering and 'magic', and since then I have had the interest in good optics: binoculars, spotting scopes, and camera lenses.
    Last edited by Steen; 3rd September 2010 at 00:29.

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    Minolta SRT 101. MY first real cam that I owned. That was almost 40 years ago.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    Man, you guys are making me nostalgic or something...

    The first camera I recall using that got me hooked on the concept of photography was a Zeiss Ikon 220 roll film camera. Then I played around with a Kodak Retina IIC or something that was quiet and more compact. First camera that got me into working was, like Guy, the Minolta SRT 101. Loved that camera, until it was replaced with the serious workhorse Nikon Photomic FTn and then F2 models, supplemented by Leica M4s for photojournalism work. I loved the images from my old Hasselblads too, but today, no tools really "inspire" me the same way, though all of them are far better for getting images. Now they are more tools to me than the older more mythical wonderboxes that I used to think they were ;-) And Steen, I used to use those same Exaktas before I got my Minolta. The left-handed wind was different, and WLF made working in bad weather impossible, but it was a nifty machine for sure. And I still have my old Nikkormat, and it works!

    LJ
    Last edited by LJL; 3rd September 2010 at 07:43.

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    This thread has turned a different direction. What inspired me, at the beginning, was the first camera I bought for myself (Minolta 16Ps) because I could control the exposure. Then two borrowed cameras, my mom's Argus C3 and my grandfather's 1949 Rolleiflex.

    After that I bought my Nikon F with 50/1.4 lens and shortly followed up with a pair of Leica RFs (ancient IIc and IIf with Elmar 3.5cm and 5.0cm ... *both* for $99 at Olden Camera in 1969!). Those three cameras propelled me to always have a camera with me, but I couldn't afford film so shot pretty sparingly.

    In 1971, I arrived home from school in early October and went downstairs to the darkroom to print after dinner. I opened the door and couldn't get into the room ... there were boxes and boxes of stuff there. My mother said, "Oh, Uncle Matt came by and said he left some things for you in the darkroom."

    What had happened was that my uncle had a elderly pro photographer as a customer at his store whom he was very friendly with. The old man had been told by his doctor that he had a terminal illness and decided to close his business and spend what time was left to him traveling. He sold off all his studio gear commercially but realized he had a lot of odd bits and stuff in his home darkroom that weren't worth inventorying and selling, so he asked my uncle if he knew anyone who would use it.

    The end result was that I received about 2000 feet of 35mm film, a six foot high stack of boxes of paper, and several boxes of developer and fixer, along with a ton of other oddball stuff. With that I could shoot to my heart's content and learn what photography was all about.

    That was the base of my real inspiration in photography: the ability to shoot to my heart's content, experiment and learn. The cameras, nice as they were, are always secondary to that.

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    Senior Member bradhusick's Avatar
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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    Okay, the Pentax ME Super with Pentax 50mm f/1.4 was my first SLR and served me well dooing the high school newspaper and yearbook. Then much later came the D1...

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    Now that's a very interesting story. Thanks for sharing.


    Quote Originally Posted by Godfrey View Post
    This thread has turned a different direction. ... to my heart's content, experiment and learn. The cameras, nice as they were, are always secondary to that.

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    Senior Member Per Ofverbeck's Avatar
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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    Chronologically, for me it was/is:

    1) My Leicaflex SLīs (had 2 of them, plus 4 lenses; an incredible improvement over my earlier Minolta gear).

    2) My Rollei SL66. 6x6 cm quality, SLR with rear tilt plus built-in bellows. A heavy beast, but almost a view camera.

    3) My Leica Digilux 2. After a few fiddly digicams and dSLRīs, at least a digital camera with an interface that felt like a real camera. I still have, use, and love it.

    4) The M9. The ultimate fulfilment of the Digilux 2īs promises. The camera I will be buried with (but hopefully have time to almost wear out before that...).

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    Ah, distant memory. The camera that got me hooked was an Agfa Optima 1a (I believe it was 1964 and I believe I paid about $45.00 for it). It was auto exposure with a selenium cell meter and used zone focus. I had no idea what a rangefinder was back then. I entered a teenage photo contest that Camera 35 magazine sponsored and won an honorable mention. My photo was published with 19 others as slide size images on the cover. That's all it took. 46 years later, I am still at it - and - by the way - I found a 1a on ebay last year and had to buy it!

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    Senior Member David Schneider's Avatar
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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    I loved my Nikon Ftn and loved my Bronica erts, but one camera I still have is my favorite lover. lol. Rollie 35 I bought in 1972 or so. The battery compartment cap got lost so I couldn't even use the rather crude needle matching exposure and had to learn exposure because the camera couldn't help you. It had no rangefinder so you had to guess at focusing distance. It was manual everything and fit in your pocket. It had, rather has, a great 35mm lens. It taught you exposure, distance estimation, dof, everything. And the darn thing is worth more today than I paid for it.

  30. #30
    Member Rick Waldroup's Avatar
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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    A Nikon F with a 50mm lens was my first real camera.

    It remains a sentimental favorite because I mowed lawns all summer, saved my money, and purchased it at a local pawn shop. I was 14 years old.

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    Re: Which camera has inspired you the most?

    None, because all did something to me in certain point and time, so i can't ignore any of them, they are tools at the end that i can use whatever to what i want, i am inspired by photos i see on the net not by the gear.
    Tareq

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