What is mine now hasn’t always been mine – and it has a story…
My dad bought a Konica Autorelfex T3 SLR camera back in 1975, the year I was born. But my dad was taking photos long before he made this purchase. I have images he shot as a teenager in the ’50s, taken with a Brownie. In fact, I owe my own lifelong passion and pursuit of all things photographic to him. In most of my childhood memories, Dad always has his camera. He took some pretty awesome pictures with it. He recorded his family’s life with it.
Jumping ahead to my teenage years, I began “borrowing” the Konica – most of the time I asked his permission first, but sometimes I didn’t. I liked the way it took photos – it was just so much better than my crappy little point-and-shoot. I wanted to take pictures like Dad did. Yes, before I went to college to study photography as a career path, I taught myself the basics on my father’s SLR.
For a few years, I outright claimed the Konica as if it were mine. I actually took it with me when I moved into my first apartment. I guess I foolishly believed I had the right to do so. I was wrong to assume he wouldn’t mind. I was hurt when he asked for it back, but I handed it over.
Time went on, I finished school and got my own cameras.
…I always missed using my dad’s though…it took lovely photos…
Fast forward many years later to just a few weeks ago – while I was visiting my parents over the Labour Day weekend, my dad brought up that old Konica. We had been having a discussion about the merits of today’s digital SLR technology versus the “old-fashioned” kind.
“You know,” he said with an oh-so slight twinkle in his eye, “I still have that old SLR of mine.”
“You mean the one I used to steal from you all the time?” I said feeling sheepish. He just shrugged.
“I could give it to you. You’ll get more use out of it than I ever will again.” he said. Dad had “gone digital” quite a few years ago.
The next thing I knew, he had packed up all his gear – the wide-angle lens, the zoom lens, the cool, compact retro-style tri-pod, the camera bag – and handed it all over to me. In that instant, I realised this was a moment I had hoped for, but had not expected: Dad officially handing the torch – his torch – over to me.
“Here, it’s yours – take good care of it.”
I will, Dad….I will.
This is a torch I am proud to carry and call my own.