Martin S Olivier
The cameras that travelled with me
The cameras / Page under construction...
I do not recall whether my first camera was actually called a Sharpshooter, but it looked and worked exactly like the Sharpshooter depicted here. Around 1970 the 126 film format was rather popular for lower end cameras. The 126 cartridge simply dropped into the back of the camera, making loading very easy. The inability to keep the film pressed to the back meant that is was almost impossible to achieve perfect focus, but most of the cameras using the format were focus free anyway.
The Sharpshooter simplified this concept even further: The cartridge did not drop into the camera, but attached to the camera to form part of the 'body' of the camera. With a cheap leans and inaccurate single-speed shutter it took horrible pictures. But the one I received as a Christmas present around 1970 was my first step into photography, and the bug has bitten.
At some point I will post some of those early pictures.
Around 1971 I upgraded to a proper point-and-shoot camera: A Halina C2. It also used a 126 film cartridge. And it accepted flash cubes that enabled low light photography - not the Magicubes introduced in 1970, but 'real' cubes that needed batteries to be fired.
Colour film was expensive and I started out using black and white. However, I soon realised that colour transparencies were less expensive, since they did not require printing
The camera was still focus free and suffered from the other limitations of 126 film. Yet, it managed to preserve some memories. Here are some examples:
Being chased by a dragon, Durban, South Africa, 1975
Martiens Kotze Park, Springs, South Africa, circa 1975
HP PhotoSmart 850
Pentax *ist DS
Agfa ePhoto CL18
Canon Powershot A710 IS
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Last update: 11 June 2008