I was one of those kids that loved looking through family photo albums and still do. The film record of someone else’s memory became the basis of my own. I even made my friends look through them with me. This is probably why I gravitate toward vintage cameras.
Several years ago I started collecting Polaroids and other vintage cameras at thrift stores or online. They were still really cheap then. I spent hours on Flickr forums learning where to find a certain old type battery or how to use available film for a camera whose film type isn’t made anymore.
I started bringing my twin lens reflex cameras and contraption on hiking trips. My husband sometimes wore a backpack dedicated to vintage cameras so I could grab them easily. I had each child hike while holding photos from my 210 land camera as they dried. Amazingly, they don’t hold this against me.
I went to great lengths for what you might find mediocre images. But they are magical to me. Even mundane bits of daily life seem special when preserved by these. These particular bits of life, with the exception of the last image, were plucked up by my Polaroid Sx-70.
I have a nice DSLR but nothing it produces moves me as much, unless it’s the digital record of the image I get through argus 75 lenses, via a homemade cardboard contraption. Even a small, slightly out of focus, polaroid photo with roller marks seems more real than anything stored on my computer. It is in my hand, though.