Vintage Camera Day

What an interesting couple of days involving old cameras and films contained therein! It first started when I saw on Flickr about local Bedminster photographer Knautia who was involved in getting pics of the Secret Bristol Flickrwall. Her and another Flickr’r Brendadada were looking at old Zenit cameras and I suddenly thought hey…I’ve got one of those! So I went to the cupboard where I sort of thought it was and there it was. My old Zenit E. When I cracked it open to look inside I had to slam it shut – it had a film inside wound on to the first frame! How long had it been there? I cast my mind back – 2 years? No – longer than that. 5 years? No it had to be longer. I seem to remember about 8 years ago using the camera for the last time, so it had to be about then! Intriguing – an 8 year old film that had been exposed to the light – would it still work? A challenge!

So yesterday I took half a days flexi leave and wandered over to Whiteladies Road in Clifton, Bristol to shoot the film through the camera to see what would happen. I understood that the colours would be odd but so what? The pictures above are the result, a bit wierd in colour but still works OK!

Then the wierd bit. Went to my fathers house today and told him about the incident, and he said that he still had my mothers camera that he had put away after she died a couple of years ago. He went to find it. It was a Rollei A26 – looked like a 110 camera but I recognised it at once as a 126 camera. He hadn’t known how to open it but we worked it out and – inside was a film mostly exposed all but for the last frame. Spooky. I have now found out that 126 film is no longer made on a large scale and processing is still possible but not on the high street. I am going to get the film processed and I’m going to get a film and run it through the camera just for Mum.

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