View Full Version : Stigma of the past ?

01-24-2010, 14:08
Roger's recent AP article concerning past pleasures and simplicity - Land Rover and Deux Chevaux - created echoes of my sense that being fixated on pre 1960 was considered suspect - of not looking forard etc , that there was a stigma attached to this .

Realising now that my glitch inhibits erasing old files and substituting new , has been a great relief .
It seems that older people recall early events when yesterday are vague .
I have problems with both , but cameras help trigger the well being of some of those times - snapshots in a mist .
It seems that I have a headstart on Old Age , 'cos I have never been any different ... including hearing loss etc LOL

I can and do , encompass before and now , but the further I stray from 1960 , the less real it is . It was a Godess-send to find a retro digital camera in my Leica M 8 [ especially as it was way beyond my finances until a small inheritance ]

However , I shall now just allow ' me ' to find comfort in my pre 1960 toys - is this an ASD thing , or do others feel awkward about others respones to past pleasures ?



Sorry about highjacking your column , guru Roger LOL

01-24-2010, 14:29
things still were mechanical then. i have an attachment for such things as well. a man can have a sort of a relationship with something mechanical, but not with something that has a tiny mind of its own. good cameras of the mechanical era are industrial art. the same for a good bolt-action rifle like the mauser, a double shotgun like the parker, or a razor sharp 100-year-old drawknife ...

Roger Hicks
01-24-2010, 14:35
Dear Dee,

No need for apologies! I always value your slant on things, possibly because (like mine) it's a bit more slanted than other people's.

Someone else on the forum has a tag line something like, "One kind of fool says that this is new, and therefore better, and another kind of fool says that this is old, and therefore better." I think we all lean one way or the other (and you and I both lean towards the old). The trick is to spot when you are being rational about this: "This (old) product does all I need and want, and is comprehensible and affordable, and therefore does not need to be changed," and "This new product genuinely does offer advantages I want, so I'll find the money and learn to use it" (like the M8!). Do I feel guilty about any of it? No. If someone else thinks it's strange, that's their worry. To quote the late, great Terence Donovan, "Not my probem, sunshine."

As for the unreality bit, well, yes, as you get older, unreality builds. Or more accurately, the level of unreality remains the same, but we get better at recognizing it.

Any chance you'll be at Arles? Only six months away now...



01-24-2010, 14:43
I thought this was going to be a thread about old SLR lenses ... then I noticed it was Stigma not Sigma.

More coffeee I think! :p

01-24-2010, 14:53
Some of my cameras are sigmatised LOL

01-24-2010, 15:06
Of course [ off course as ever ] , what is rational to me is seriously irrational to most - like having ' several same ' 'cos my mind dee'mands reinforcement of the input .

I have twins of most cameras ... and triples of others LOL - Most would see ' two ' Kiev II , but ASD tends to see Kiev II again and again , rather like a very small child .
Intellectually , I can see through this , so I can function - and count Kievs LOL , but it's a kind of background noise .
I am now OK with this , but it took a long time to work it out , then to acknowlege it , finally not to be ashamed of it - and to explain to those trying to understand ASD .
[ which is the most important ]

Cameras , as safe ' magic ' toys have helped enormously in working this out , as has this and other places .

Luckily , some later cameras are read as being like a real camera - my old Canon G2 for example - but a slimline screen only digi-box would never work for me , and a Pentax K10D is hard work to assimilate ... but I am getting there .

01-24-2010, 15:14
Some of my cameras are sigmatised LOL

In line with this thread, one of my favorite old lenses was a Sigma 600 cat. Close focus, not too big for a 600mm, sharp as a tack, what wasn't to like? Sadly, destroyed in a fire and never replaced.

I think like Dee and Mr. Hicks said, I like the old comfortable gear. I don't own modern expensive cameras, but in a P&S digital, I don't mind auto focus as long as if will focus where I want. I even enjoy it to an extent.

But I still enjoy focusing my SLRs and RFs. I don't mind my Fuji selecting the shutter speed; it does it so well. I like my Sekonic and Gossen light meters; they are a pleasure to use.

01-24-2010, 19:45
I thought this was going to be a thread about old SLR lenses ... then I noticed it was Stigma not Sigma.

More coffeee I think! :p

I have never been too fond of Sigma lenses either.

01-25-2010, 11:34
I believe there is great value in man's achievements in the world of mechanical devices. They are so often an extension of the hand work that once was the means of making such things. Although the tools have been substituted by computer operated machines. There is a lineage to them. Some things are still finished by hand, an example being the most intricate of parts in the finest of watches. These mechanical achievements represent the highest level of accuracy attainable with out the aid of advanced technology. There is a beauty to the best designs, and there is a feel that speaks to us. Whether it is a Leica camera, a fountain pen, or a fine mechanical watch.

I think there is another aspect of the Leica camera that is not so much about being retro. I started my journey into photography with a Nikon FM2. I chose it because I wanted to learn every element of taking the picture. It was latter that I moved on to a Leica M6ttl. I chose this because I wanted a more intimate relationship with my subject. I like being called upon to make each decision with regard to the picture, and I like the tactile aspect of the camera. I like how there is less between me and my subject, as the system requires me to fully understand the moment. The viewer does not push my vision through the lenses perspective, but rather allows it to remain natural. Keeping me connected to my subject, while my mind takes care of what the final image will be. I see the M8 & M9 as being logical extensions of a system that allows a very unique way of taking photographs. I see it as progression, with out the loss of the human aspect of taking photographs. It is of course easy to let machines do more and more work for us. But, it is not very rewarding to me. The digital M is exactly what it needs to be, no more and no less. Leica embraces the technology that allows it to remain true to its design, not morph into something that betrays it.

Just my thoughts.