Leitz Camera Action
The photographs that I took on the trip to the zoo in 1968.
For those of you who haven't read the other pages on this part of the site yet,
these are all taken with a Kodak Box Brownie camera which uses 620 film and produces 6x9cm (58x85mm) negatives (or slides). One of the options
on that camera is the 'Bulb' setting which allows the photographer to take long exposures such that the shutter is open for as long
as you have your finger pressed on the shutter release button.
Being and eight-year-old child on his first school trip and only having been given the briefest of training on how to use it, during
the course of playing with it on the bus on the way there, I managed to select 'Bulb' without realising what it meant. As a result of this,
all of the pictures have disturbingly long exposure times for hand-held photographs and as a result are blurred to some degree - you can see this
by looking at the highlights on some of the images and following the track of the exposure.
Fortunately, the film used in cameras like this (and others used for domestic use before the times of TTL (Through The Lens) metering)
had to have a lot of latitude to cope with the variable lighting conditions between shots and a non-professional pressing the shutter
release without any knowledge of what exposure was.
This meant that the negative film was quite low contrast allowing all manner of levels of exposure to be recorded and this was converted
back into something that looked like the original scene by printing onto a higher contrast print film and making sure the amount of
exposure was corrected at the enlarger step in the process where you did have somebody who actually knew what they were doing.
As I recall, we got the photographs back from the developers and they had only printed out three of them as the rest were too blurred.
Here, through the magic of modern technology, I have retrieved the rest so that you can see for yourself what I intended to take a
picture of. The final prints of this process are 8x12cm so there is not a lot of enlargement.