I really got into photography in a big way and for Christmas I asked my parents for a big upgrade. I wanted a Minolta 110 SLR zoom camera but that is not what I got. We opened our packages on Christmas Eve at my grandmother’s and yes I got a camera! It was a Petri Compact 35 SLR , a JCPenney’s 135mm f2.8 telephoto and a 2X converter??? Ok I looked puzzled as I had absolutely no clue as to how to operate the thing. So riding back home in the car I read the owners manual and played with it! The next years Texxas Jam was on!!! For that time in my life this thing was the perfect camera!
A Love Affair With the Olympus OM-1n
I learned to use the Petri and had great success with it. Problem was I was most likely the only guy in town with one. I had out grown the camera and wanted a motor drive and a larger selection of lenses. What I wanted was a Nikon FM. When you make $2.35 an hour at your job the $550 price tag on the Nikon FM was way out of sight! I searched and searched and found a camera that would do the same job and do it well. The Olympus OM-1n and it was $249 at Wilson’s department store. It had all the things I wanted and at a lot lower price. I put it on layaway and eventually got it out! This was the workhorse camera for almost 25 years! Concerts, autoracing and a lot of sports action, it did just about everything at the time. It recorded a lot of history!
Steve's Canon AE-1
Steve’s father had recently passed away and left him a lot of things. Besides a watch and a British automobile, Steve received a Canon AE-1 and a couple of nice lenses. Steve used the AE-1 for a long time and later switched to Nikon digitals before he died. Most of his archives I have no idea where they ended up. In his living room at his time of passing I know he had several poster size prints from shows we attended. The main show I remeber using it was at the Cotton Bowl one night in the rain. We had second row floor for Simon and Garfunkel!!!
The Nikon Era!
In mid 1999 I broken the crank advance shaft on the main OM-1n in Santa Barbara California. The next day we were in a Wolf Camera store in San Jose buying a new camera. Knowing that Olympus equipment was hard to come by and expensive We made the switch back to Nikon. At one time we were using a Nikon F Photomic TN and thought it was very good but extremely large. Two new Nikons were the base for our system. The N70 and the F100. These were the last of the film cameras in constant use. We did have the Om-1n repaired but retired it and the OM-PC that year. Now we are full time Nikon shooters.