Have you been clicking through to read my updated camera reviews as I publish them? It’s been quite a project to undertake this year, consuming a surprising amount of time. I thought I’d be making little tweaks here and there, and on the older reviews resizing the photos to fit my current template. But I’ve found myself heavily rewriting some reviews based on continued usage of the cameras, and adding photos from outings I made after I wrote the review.
My camera reviews have become the cornerstone of this blog, and they’re worth this time and effort.
I shot but one roll in my Kodak Signet 40 (review here) before passing it to its next owner. I kind of regret that. It was a decent little Kodak; it and I might have made some lovely images together had I put a few more rolls through it. This is my favorite photo from the Signet 40, of an old AMC Jeep I found parked. Kodak Gold 200.
I satisfied my Canon EOS curiosity several years ago and don’t feel compelled ever to return to the series. I liked my semi-pro A2e best, but the second-place winner was the first ever EOS camera, the EOS 650 (review here). It did everything I needed it to and handled well. While I owned it I aimed it at another old camera on my desk. While most of my subject isn’t in focus, I like the image anyway. Fujifilm Superia X-tra 400.
I would have enjoyed my Polaroid Automatic 250 (review here) a great deal more had the Fuji film packs been more rigid, like the Polaroid packs had been. The camera squished the pack so hard you couldn’t get the first three or four photographs out without opening the back slightly. I brought it to work one day to show Roger, my colleague and fellow film photographer. He was suitably impressed. Fujifilm FP-3000B.
I put just one roll through my folding Voigtländer Bessa (review here) and that was enough for me. I shot the whole roll one evening within 20 feet of my front door. Here’s a tree in my front yard. Even though my Bessa had the lowest-spec lens, it delivered pretty good sharpness. Fujifilm Neopan 100 Acros.
I threw out my original review of the Pentax ME and started over. Read it here. I’ve shot this camera more than any other. It just suits me, enough that I published a book of my favorite photos from it. Buy your copy here. It’s hard for me to choose just one favorite photo from my ME, but I’ve always really liked this one, of Rife’s Market, now closed, in Columbus, Ohio. Kodak Tri-X 400.
One more from the ME. Meet Mitchell, who attends my church. I made this photo at a pitch-in lunch in our basement. He was barely a teenager when I made this; he’s now an adult living on his own. I don’t know what became of the fellow behind him, and sadly I can’t remember his name. Kodak Tri-X 400.
My Kodak Brownie Hawkeye (review here) was a nice enough box camera, plenty easy to use, but I had bad luck with the expired 620 films I put through it. I made this photo in Springfield, MO, on Route 66, and it’s the best of all the images I made with that camera. Kodak Gold 200.
I didn’t fall in love with the Voigtländer Vito II (review here). I shot a couple quick rolls for a review and then never used it again. It’s in someone else’s collection now. I took it on a photowalk Downtown and paused on Monument Circle to make this image of Christ Church Cathedral with some modern buildings rising behind it. I believe this church is the oldest building on the Circle. Kodak Plus-X.
My Kodak Retina Automatic III was a fine camera, surprisingly usable and useful. But I knew I wouldn’t use it enough, so I passed it along to a new owner. Before I did, I photographed some of my family on the deck.
Finally, my Kodak Monitor Six-20 came with a line-topping Anastigmat Special lens that does very nice work. My favorite photo from it is of this fence in the Broad Ripple neighborhood of Indianapolis.
I’m enjoying revisiting my old reviews and the photos I made with these cameras, but it’s taking me a lot more time than I anticipated. I have about 30 more reviews to go. I’m managing two per week, so this project should wrap early in the new year.
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