Monday, February 09, 2009

The bite of the shutter bug

I took my very first photo on a Canon pro SLR when I was eight years old. It was my Daddy's. I eventually got that camera when I was 19, but I am missing out a whole lot in between.

I was practical born before a camera. Even when his university student budget limited him from buying and processing film, my father seemed to have shot endless rolls of my childhood, chronicling my early years.

He also taught my mother a bit about photography, which resulted in interesting father daughter pics.

We were a twosome my Daddy and me. And he was my first love. His beloved camera was my second. I wanted to be like him when I grew up.

Then I got my first camera when I was nine. My very own. I still have a roll of 24 film from then that I came across some time ago. I had been bitten. There was to be no cure.

I opted to study still photography formally with Carl Dawson at CPTC while doing summer jobs as a Production Assistant for "Hill and Gully Ride" and "Entertainment Report", two of the longest running, prime time, home grown television shows in Jamaica. They are stilll running, and still maintain their prime spots- but that is an aside. I learned all the rules, composition, framing, exposure, lighting, dept of field, looking room, dark room processing and printing. Back then, I was 16.

The semester following, I took an elective and Excelsior Community College in black and white photography, delving into the realm of portraiture, photojournalism and still life for the very first time.

I went to UWI Mona at 18 and joined the Black and White Photography Club... I thought them a little too bourgeoisie for my tastes but kept going. Time Life magazine and B & W were my close allies.

I never exhibited in their annual shows. I came close. So close. I became friends with one of Jamaica's top artistic photographers, Louis Davis, and he took me to Hope Pastures and we spent the whole day shooting a roll of 36, macro filters, lens changes and all, only to realise that there was a kink in the film and the 36 exposures turn out to be on one frame. It was my camera. It was his fancy lenses and light metres filters. I was distressed.

The cameras got too old and I found mysef a broke student and since then, I have been patiently awaiting to enter the arena of professional digital photography. You see, I knew from a long time ago that the dark room chemicals were not for me. I have not really delved into that realm of photography since. Until...maybe not exactly now...but so damn soon as I can taste it.


Azikiwe said...

...all part of the technology evolution K., motion picture creation was chemical at first and still used today but thanks to DV - THERE is an option...funny enough the technique of good storytelling never really changes....HMMMMMMMMMMMM ;-)

Sheer Almshouse said...

No... that's the beauty of it. And I am happy that I am learning how to tell them better :)

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