Sunday, July 20, 2014

A Camera for a Lifetime

I saved a camera today.


My Grandma passed away recently. While preparing for her funeral my family was set upon the task of getting photos together for the wake. While we were searching I found some stunning black and white photos that my dad had taken while in Vietnam during the war. I asked if I could keep them, because I was convinced that these photos told a bigger story than what they deserved sitting in a box for the rest of their lives. Ever since then I've been very curious as to how these pictures came to be.


Upon walking into the living room my dad informs me that he's throwing away his old camera. Thinking it was just one of the old ones from when I was little I didn't understand why I was being notified. That was until he said it was his camera from Vietnam. My response then was a little different.

THE camera? THE camera that took THE photos?
After clearing up any miscommunication that this was in fact THE camera he told me to go save it from the back of his truck. The same truck that was headed to the dump.

It only needed some cleaning having survived, remarkably, one war, several moves, and nearly two decades in open air barn.

The brand of this Japanese made camera is Yashica. This darling was purchased in Vietnam and came with a plethora of goodies.

Along with what you see here the case still contains it's original Japanese/English instructions, view finder, tripod, and much more.

Here is THE camera with THE photos. These are photos my dad took of his time in Vietnam. He even makes a small cameo in the bottom picture with his stunningly hipster glasses.

Seeing what good shape it was in after all this time I decided to keep it.

That wasn't enough...

The only things missing from this glorious find are batteries and film. Knowing full well our local Walmart still carries 35mm film I was sure I could put this baby back into working order. Until we opened the battery compartment. Apparently 40 year old Japanese cameras use 40 year old Japanese batteries...who knew?

My dad made quick work of it and within minutes had found and purchased adapters and spare batteries for a measly amount off of Ebay.

I hope to have many adventures with this beauty in the new future. Keep your eyes peeled for its photos on the blog.

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