Nikon F2 … Roll of Tri-X … 36 Pics …

Thanks to legendary veteran combat photographer Tim Page (who dobbed me in) … I have this week been wielding on a spare shoulder a pristine circa 1971 manual everything Nikon F2 loaded with a roll of Tri-X film.

The idea … the brainchild of photographer Renato Repetto … is to get the Nikon into the hands of top (and not so top) photographers all around Australia who will each shoot one roll of B&W film … just 36 frames each.

The AFP400TX Project is about seeing life through the eyes of Australian Film Photographers. The Nikon F2 (eye level DE-1 Plain Prism, 1971-1976) no 7587117 with a 55mm 2.8 Micro Nikkor will be used for every exposure of the project, making the only variable the photographer. All rolls of film will be developed by the project sponsor Rewind Photo Lab in NSW to ensure consistency across the project.

My colleagues of note featured in the project include the afore mentioned Tim PageDavid Dare Parker, Michael Coyne, Stephen Dupont, Jesse Marlow, Sean Davey, Heather Faulkner, Roger Garwood  … and many maybe not so well known.

A diary accompanying the camera will document the creative thoughts of all the photographers in the project for later  incorporation into a photo book. The book will be launched with gallery exhibitions in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne featuring silver gelatin prints of the best photos of the project.

Now … I cut my teeth shooting ‘manual everything’ film SLR’s way, way back when … but can now confirm that ‘going back’ is somewhat of a sobering and frightening experience !!

Below is a pic I made (on a D4S) of Wik Munkan artist Lex Namponan from Aurukun, wielding the precious Nikon F2 used in the project. Lex was born in 1971 … the same year that the F2 was released. I used two precious frames from the Tri-X roll to make a portrait of Lex. Fingers crossed that Lex and I make the AFP400TX Project exhibitions and book …

Image © Brian Cassey

AFP400TX Project - Australia - Brian Cassey


The Pleasure of Camera Nostalgia (part 2) …

Back in May in a post on this blog …  “The Pleasure of Camera Nostalgia” …  I wrote about the cameras that I acquired and used during my formative teen years in photography. At the time I had just found replacements for a long lost pair of Minolta’s – a Minolta Rapid 24 rangefinder and a Minolta SRT101 SLR.

I also mentioned that I was searching for a rare camera – a Yashica Pentamatic – that sat on my teenage camera timeline between the two Minolta’s.

I am pleased to say that, after months of searching and net browsing and now thanks to EBay seller bj2875, I have acquired the much sought after Yashica.

Although a basic (and very pretty) camera the Yashica Pentamatic was my first ever SLR … and my first ‘sold’ photograph was made on the original. It was also Yashica’s first SLR model and it was launched in 1960 (my pounds, shillings and pence went on a second hand example some years after launch!). It has no exposure metering at all … and has the unique but intelligent feature of a shoulder mounted accessory shoe set around the rewind knob.

My example arrived from seller ‘Bob’ today courtesy US Mail and must say I am very pleased with the condition of the camera body, the 55mm 1.8 and the 35mm 2.8 Yashinon lenses, leather cases and straps, bulb flash complete with boxes of spare bulbs, original instruction booklet … and price ! Still inside the camera, on the last frame, was a roll of ‘Sears 24 exposure color slide film’. Have my doubts whether I’ll be able to get that processed.

My sincere thanks go to Bob who is more a seller of coins than cameras.

With the acquisition of the Yashica I believe I now have examples of all the cameras I used from childhood through to my twenties (unless my memory is completely stuffed).

Below is a pic of the camera after todays unpacking … pretty isn’t it.  Image © Brian Cassey

Yashica Pentamatic 35mm SLR film camera