If you've been reading this blog for a while you may already know about my affinity for vintage cameras (well all things vintage, really ;). Earlier this year I began to expand my camera collection and it started with the Brownie Hawkeye Flash Model above. As fate would have it, this camera was tucked away in my Gram's basement and was rediscovered while she was cleaning out the space. That basement was the spark that lit my passion for vintage. It's where I found my first records and started my Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys, and Bobbsey Twins collections.
I'm in the process of testing this camera. I purchased a role of 140 film and a few 110s to re-spool later. Grant helped me take it apart to clean and it's looking much better. I don't have any bulbs for the flash, so I'm going to forgo that part of the camera - it easily detaches from the side. I honestly don't have super high hopes because the camera hasn't been used in at least 40 years but if all goes well, there will be a Part 2 to this post!
Next up is the No.2C Brownie. This guy is at least 80 years old - production of the 2C ended in 1934. I bought it at an auction a few weeks ago and when I picked it up I was surprised at the size - about double what I expected. Out of all the three of the 'box' Brownies I have this one is in the best shape. I don't plan on testing them right now but can't wait to properly display them when we move to our new place. Back when we were in our apartment I had a small shelf dedicated to my cameras. It would likely be too small to hold them all now.
Meet the No.2A Brownie - a bit like a smaller version of the 2C. This Brownie and the one below came in a box of vintage cameras I purchased at an auction. There were 6 cameras in that box, the other 4 will be featured in posts later this week. I love the simplicity of the box Brownies. The front easily separates from the back so you can load the film. We've come along way since these were produced but I really hope we never lose film completely. I learned how to shoot manually on a film SLR and it really forces you to think about what you're shooting. You don't have a huge memory card to fill up and you can't just 'fix' everything in Photoshop. Don't get me wrong - I love my DSLR and Photoshop but I still think film is the best tool for learning about photography. Now if only I had stuck around school long enough to learn how to develop that film.
I'm actually not sure which Brownie model this is. It's in really rough shape (and doesn't smell too wonderful either). If you have a guess please leave a comment! There are no markings on the back to indicate the model name/number.
I'm looking forward to continuing this series throughout the week. I will be sharing my 35mm cameras, instant cameras, and movie film cameras. Last year I did a wee post on Brownies. The Brownie Camera Page is a really great resource if you want to learn more about Kodak Brownies. You can also head over to the George Eastman House website to view a list of all of the Brownies. FYI - it's a long one!