ScuzzBlog: Diaries November 2022

Entry 26th November 2022: Post 1: Life with lenses - Zenit-E and Cosina CX-2.

Life with lenses - Zenit-E and Cosina CX-2.

I'm pretty utilitarian when it comes to most things. I tend to use 
something for its purpose as a tool rather than looks and creator 
of masterpieces. Therefore a camera for me was simply a means to 
an end, cus often the pictures were only part of a process that 
led to something else. An example being the use of images taken 
from a camera for survey purposes.

My interest in the functionality of a lens first started with
those crude stamp collecting magnifying glasses that were so so
essential for mounting stamps [ not ]. I was soon making my own
microscope with various lenses and Meccano. I recall getting the
slides given free with bubble gum for the then latest James Bond
films and creating a crude projector to view them.

The lens certainly was fascinating and made anything you could
look at more intriguing.

Mom then bought me a small telescope which I used to peep through
people's windows. Normally the kid over the road that wrote rude
words on bits of paper that I had to decipher. Again as with the
magnifying glasses the lens could be removed and strapped to yet
another to get more interesting results.

My first camera was the Zenit-E made between 1965-68. This was a
Soviet made Krasnogosk Mechaniski Zavod product and crude to the
extreme. A 35mm SLR camera that literally you could drop on the
floor and it wouldn't break. I know cus if you look at the lens
you can see I did just that. So many bits were bought for this
camera. A wide angle lens, a zoom lens and also extension tubes
to do macro work. I used the camera during my first years at
college. I even took images very successfully off the TV. This 
was the camera I used for all my home film developing work.

By 1981 I was in the mood for something a little more mobile, and
so I bought the Cosina CX-2. This camera was pretty revolutionary
in the day being very much the first zone focus camera known as
Lomography. The camera travelled the world with me stuffed in my
pocket. Even today it sits with the same body size as both my 
Canon and Lumix digitals and yet had to house a roll of 35mm film.

Sadly my original Nikon EM camera, my next in the line, was stolen
when a car I was hiring was stolen. Following that I purchased the
SONY HandyCAM video camera and gave up with stills altogether. By
the mid nineties I was using the Epson digital and so it was bye-
bye media film of any sorts video or 35mm.

Like I say, photographs have always been just a means to an end for
me. I have a large box of photographs somewhere the back of the
pantry. The only pics I have out are these that I show here which
I stuffed in a glass frame back in 1984 when I first moved onto the
south coast. The first is interesting cus it was taken on a tripod
in pitch black night-time. I just left the shutter open for a few
minutes and this was the result. I loved the lighting on the coast
even at night.

Anyhoo that was my history of still photography. I have no real
interest in the art of photography, though I do like looking at
any picture.

Life with lenses - Zenit-E and Cosina CX-2.

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Last updated 26th November 2022

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