I don't have a lot of memories of my father, he passed away when I was pretty young. Maybe it's because I love taking pictures that one memory of him refused to leave me.
My dad dabbled in photography. When I was younger I snooped around our house and I found several of his cameras. Boy, they were old. I don't know if my dad fancied himself as a serious photographer. I think he loved the mechanics behind the whole thing. From what I do know about the man, that makes sense.
The one memory I have of him and photography was a time when we traveled north to spend some time with my mom's parents in Idaho. If you know the Teton Valley, you know there are vistas of the famous mountain range that literally take your breath away, and my grandparents had the best view of the Tetons hands down. My dad decided to take some pictures of the range--he snapped an entire roll.
Turns out, he left the lens cap on his camera and so when he got back the developed pictures, they were completely black. The camera he used did not have a direct line-of-sight from lens to viewfinder. So when my dad looked at the small glass window at the scene he wanted to capture, what he was seeing what not what the lens would see. He ended up completely wasting that roll of film and denying all of us the chance to see what the Teton mountains looked like from the Idaho side on that day back in the early 1970s.
My first quality camera was my Olympus OM-10 SLR. I LOVED that camera! So much so, I still have it. My dad would have loved it, too, and not just because of the lens cap debacle, but because that little thing was so amazing. When you look into the viewfinder of that camera, that's what would transfer to the film--the amazing Single Lens Reflex in action.
And cameras today are light years ahead of my OM-10. You don't even have to look at a viewfinder anymore. With most cameras, you look at the little video screen to see what the picture will look like. So I thought the days of "forgetting to take the lens cap off" were gone forever.
Turns out, that's not completely true. This week after work, I passed a small patch of flowers with amazing color. I took one with my iPhone one day thinking I would use it as my "Pic Of The Day." I didn't get a good shot of it, or at least, I felt I could do better. So the next day I took out my Nikon and snapped a picture. The problem was, I didn't check out the finished product. The last pictures I took with my Nikon were in a darkened theater so the settings were stuck on Manual. When I downloaded the shot to use for my "Pic Of The Day," the picture at the top of this blog is what I saw.
It was my own lens cap moment. And I didn't think those existed anymore.