I am a Chinese born in Hong Kong, turning 60 this coming X'mas time (2009)
please excuse my proficiency in English.
As one of my flickr contact said, I had more than 35 years of experience in photography,but there was a break of 30 years inactive in between. So actually I had 2 years in film era and 3 years in digital, i.e. 5 years totally.
I started in 1974 with a Minolta top model SRT SUPER (USA SRT-303) w/50 mm F1.4.....35 mm F2.8.....135 mm F2.8. I learned to develope and print (that's a real photographer should do by himself) and won my first award with a 8x10 BW in 2 months, astonished my friends.
After that, I was deeply passionate and motivated in photography for a period of 2 years. Every weekend, I had 2 rolls of film to process. I even buy 100 feet Kokak BW bulk film to make about 20 rolls cartridges myself.
Then I joined the famous HK35mm photographic association and started to print 16x20 BW print. I had participated in the 1975 International Salon Contest with 2 of the films that won me another honor. I felt proud of my achievement attained in such a short time as others who had more experience did not receive such honor.
I had the experience being a wedding photographer and bought a professional flash Metz 402 which was expensive in those days. I was an amateur wedding photographer, took about 10 wedding assignments in a year to earn more money to buy photography gears. I was just a low income general office clerk working in the same office for 10 years. But I spent a couple times of my monthly salary to buy the gears.
In 1976 I lost the interest in photography and almost quited after 2 years. But I still invested to buy the famous Bronica S2A with Nikon 75 mm F2.8 regarded as the Japanese Hasselblad camera with the standard lens 75 mm F2.8 and a cheaper Zenzanon 150 mm F3.5 to continue with wedding assignments, around 100 times from 1975 to 1985 before migrating to USA.
In 1980, I had upgraded to better camera Nikon F2A 50 mm F1.4 with motor driver that was rare at those days, also 105 mm F2.5 and 35 mm F2.8. No zoom lens for its quality was not good at that time. But I changed my mind to buy a Tamron 28-135 zoom and a 2 X converter in 1984. Though I had quit taking outdoor landscape photo, I invested a Multblitz mini studo flash with 3 head 2 reflex umbrella and that was of course an expensive investment being an amateur photographer.
The voltage used in Hong Kong was 220V, in US I needed a step up converter in order to utilize it. I seldom use it, but its still in good working condition till now and that is almost after 25 years.
I didn't go back to photography till the marriage of my nephew in 2004, I bought a digital camera Minolta A2. Being new to the digital world, I even didn't know anything about the APS-C sensor. I thought I won't be as obssesed like before, so a 28-200 mm zoom equivalent to 135 mm film lens would be able to fulfil my requirement. But that camera was not too good, misled by the magazine review.
I really came back to photography in full force in June 2007and all obessed once again after joining flickr. The reason is simple, playing film camera, no matter BW or color, it is still expensive, a Kodak CII135-36 film and printing cost you USD15 (in 1986). But in digital era, memory cards price are dropping, I can shoot thousands without printing them out. Digital folks are very fortunate, I can definitely say that they won't improve their experience that fast compared to shooting with film !
However digital is quite different and can say more complicated compare with film. One can't do much in film, but one can alter a lot in digital darkroom technique. I can be very patient with my time, spending 3 hours in dealing with one BW film and 8 hours in my darkroom. But now I have no idea to deal with the photoshop, all I know is just very simple. But I am still trying to learn it and hope it be done one day.
Thank you for reading my long passage patiently !
My photography gears since
Minolta SRT Super (body)
50 mm F1.4 (lost)
50 mm F1.7
35 mm F2.8
135 mm F2.8 (lost)
Metz 402 Germany professional flash
LPL day film loader and the 100 feet Kodak PX135 BW film
Bronica S2A 6 x 6 cm medium format 120 film (body)
75 mm Nikkor F2.8 (for Bronica)
Zenzanon 150 mm F3.5 (for Bronica)
Nikon F2a (body)
MB-2 Motor drive
50 mm F1.4 (Ais mount)
35 mm F2.8 (Ais mount)
105 mm F2.5 ( Ais mount)
Nikon extention tube PK13
Tamron 28-135 mm zoom F4.5 (Ais mount)
Tamron 2 X converter (Ais mount)
Multiblitz Mini 200 studio flash (3 heads 2 reflex umbrella)
Gossens flash meter
Nikkor 28-80 mm zoom F3.5 (Ais mount)
Nikon flash SB22
Minolta 1.5 X converter
Nikon D80 (body w/grid)
50 mm F1.8D AF Nikkor
18-135 mm zoom F3.5-5.6G IF-ED AF-S DX Nikkor
70-300 mm zoom F4.5-5.6G IF-ED AF-S VR Nikkor
Sigma 10-20 mm zoom F4-5.6 EX DC HSM
Sigma 105 MM F2.8 EX DG Macro
Manfroto tripod 190 XPROB with 488 RC ballhead
Epson P3000 40 G Viewer and Storage Drive
Interfit 24" x 24" softbox
Nikon D200 (body w/grid)
Several other tripods and stands
Savage back ground paper 53" x 12 yd (black, white, red and blue)
Lucky 60M enlarger with 75 mm lens and 50 mm Rodenstock lens and a total of 11 developing tanks (left to a friend in Hong Kong since immigration to US)
For the past 35 years I never sold out any piece of my above gears no matter they are pricey or not !
Many thanks to my aiya niece Siew Peng making English correction on my passage !
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Ah Hman says:
"Alan is one of the great Flickr friends...his comments have helped me to look at photography in a much higher level!! He has so many years of experiences and techniques...On top of that, he's super helpful! I really enjoy looking at his pictures! Thank you friend...someday we shall meet ;-)"
October 3rd, 2009
- Alan Wu
- June 2007
- Hong Kong
- New York, USA
- I am:
- Male and Taken