I think the time has come to clear out some gear. My wife would call me a hoarder but my therapist self would rationalize that I am a budding hoarder in the making and have some unresolved issues that prevents me from a) letting go of things, and b) a need to accumulate. The other possibility, or “what’s behind door #3?” is what this post is about.
So my Tammy (my beloved wife) would say I have something like a 100 cameras. I on the other hand know (or at least believe) that I have anywhere from 30-50 cameras. The reality is I have too much junk (but not enough of the good stuff!). The junk needs to be cleared away and the collection needs to have some semblance of rationality of a legitimate collection. In what I have, there is legitimate collector pieces…and a lot of mix and match and junk. The problem is, I like thrift store finds and, well, I feel the need to rescue these wonderful (and not so wonderful) photographic tools from the trash heap. A more nobler pursuit that I rationalize through my denial defense mechanism is that I am recycling. Now, a recycler of goods, not a wasteful consumer. That sounds nice, puffs up my ego just enough to justify the $2.99 thrift store purchase.
Now here is the problem, I use what I collect. Or in theory I do. But, I have too much stuff. Some of it I don’t use and never have, others I haven’t used in a long time and still more, I have gear that is half working or non working that I probably will never get around to fixing though the intention is there. A hoarder would not let it go. A collector would clear out the junk, consolidate the collection and with fewer pieces, focus on the really good or desirable stuff. Digital isn’t the issue, it is my film cameras, lenses and gear.
I have multiple working and non working FD and EOS bodies, numerous Nikon bodies (good stuff with both but not the top of the heap stuff), plenty of lenses in both mounts (with really good FD and EOS lenses). I also have plenty of Minolta bodies, both AF and manual focus. Plenty of good rokkor lenses and some A-mount stuff that is just so so. Multiple Pentax bodies with K mount and m-42 screw mount lenses and adaptors. The bodies are middle of the road stuff, lenses as well…not bad but not the best. I have one Olympus slr with 2 lenses (really wanted to get into the small oly system but hasn’t worked out yet in thrift store finds) and lot of Olympus point and shoots as well as the famous XA and XA4. I have a Mamiya DTL1000 with an assortment of screw mount lenses. And then the Leicas. Now the good stuff. An M5, a CL and a IIIf with assorted leica lenses in M and L39 mount w/ adaptors as well as canon screwmount w/ adaptors. These are definitely not going anywhere.
So, time to focus on the good stuff. Getting rid of all my point n shoots but one, a leica mini II clone, the Minolta freedom escort. The XA and XA4 work for ultra compact and will stay. Time to unload all my partial or non-working film bodies. Probably time to dump the orphaned systems that I don’t use like the Olympus and Mamiya systems. Oh, and I forgot the Konica autoreflex T4 and lenses. It’s going. Getting rid of the Minolta AF cameras and AF lenses and thining down the Minolta bodies to 1, the srt102. I want to add the XD-11 but that will come soon enough. I have a lot of good Minolta lenses and they are just too good to let go. The canon system isn’t going anywhere as I am committed to that brand. I have a couple of AF Minolta bodies that can go and possibly a lens but will keep that. Then to let go off about 30 skylight and UV filters of various dimensions, numerous vintage bags I don’t use (I would like a small leather or waxed canvas bag for my rangefinders) and unload some straps. That would clear up a bunch. But I digress.
I like cameras, I like to shoot cameras, I like old cameras especially as they are like fine watches with precision gears and mechanics. Did I say I shoot cameras? I do. Now here are some pictures of what we both collect, critters, specifically of the canine or feline category. Part of our family.
Rip, the foster kitty now in a forever home