Some days, photography is just completely exhausting. When you combine that with managing a 2 month old baby, well exhausting doesn’t even come close to describing. This last week, I managed to lose a vintage camera, expensive strobe light, and my wife’s instead camera and had no idea where I had lost it...
The day had started off great, we were heading to a livestock show with the school where my wife teaches. I was excited about the great candid photo opportunities that awaited! I loaded up my Canon AE-1 Program, lots of rolls of Koda Tri-X 400 and a roll of Elgar just in case 😉 I snapped a few photos before we left, but when we arrived I found the combination of the clouds and zero light in the barn made shooting with 400 impossible. It was too late to shoot higher than box cause I had already snapped a few shots. I struggled the entire day with trying to expose the film enough. There just weren’t any good angles either. I was already flustered, but add to that the fact I was helping my wife watch our new born and I had a disaster heading my way.
After a frustrating photography day (we all have those sometimes) I was just exhausted. We headiest back home, stopped to eat along the way, and got home and hastily unloaded the truck and crashed. It wasn’t until I tried to find the camera several days later that I discovered that the entire bag was missing 😮 I freaked out. We searched the entire house, every place we had been, we called people that were at the same event. The camera was just gone. And I couldn’t even remember having it when we got home. It was all just a blur and I couldn’t remember anything. I was just sad.
I have never lost any of my equipment, I’m always so very careful. I love my cameras like family almost. It seriously broke my heart that I had been so careless. And it drove me crazy that I couldn’t remember what I had done with the camera. I began to entertain the wildest theories in the hopes of finding it somewhere, anywhere. Ugh... After looking every possibly conceivable place, I had to concede that I had lost it. I had let fatigue and frustration cause me to lose a member of my creative toolset. It was the worst.
I decided to try to learn from the experience and do better with my equipment. The loss has renewed my vigilance at wanting to keep my equipment in orde and well maintained. So I’ve started organizing and cleaning all of my gear, organizing my accessory equipment, and making sure that anything that needs attention gets the repairs it needs. Losing the camera at least made me appreciate the gear that I had been neglecting. All the while, I kept thinking about my poor camera sitting on the side of the road somewhere or that some scummy criminal that had no idea how to use it was just snapping up my Kodak Tri-X film and laughing with his criminal friends. My imagination ran wild.
But besides learning a valuable lesson, this story does have a happy ending. While we were cleaning around the house today, my wife stepped out on the back porch where she saw my camera bag, with all the equipment I had feared lost forever sitting quietly on the back porch. I had walked out and decided to feed the dogs with the bag still on my shoulder, and removed the bag to pour the dog food and give the dogs some water. After I had done that, I walked right back into the house and left the camera sitting on the back porch all week. My wife had saved my camera and saved me my all the worry I had been dreaming up reasons to continue with.
The moral of the story; don’t let fatigue get in the way of being vigilant about your gear. Also, put your camera up before you feed the dogs lol 😂😂😂
The last image of my camera and bag before I lost it for a week...