I, like many parents, have a hidden hope that one of my children will someday follow in my footsteps and one day become a photographer… a successful photographer, mind you. My oldest daughter was first introduced to photography when I gave her a Polaroid camera slr 680 (SX-70) at the age of four and then later a lighter new plastic Polaroid Spectra System. She’s now eight and for Christmas received a digital camera from her Uncle Chris and most recently I gave her a 1924 No.2 Kodak Brownie Cartridge Hawk-Eye, Model B from my collection (shoots 120mm, 6×9 cm).
With each new camera comes more questions on photography, art and the general “how do you do that“? Meanwhile, my wife Eve has just returned from a trip to Rochester, NY which included a visit to the George Eastman House – an amazing must pilgrimage for all photographers, whether you like Kodak or not- and purchased a comic book (gotta have a souveneir for the kids!) about George Eastman and the early history of Kodak. I, of course, had to read it (okay, twice) and despite its simplistic narrative it does answer many questions my 8 year old has regarding photography and this “new” Brownie camera she’s received… and it is presented in a manner that is accessable and fun to read. Yes, I know any discussion about Kodak nowadays is fraught with controversy and conflicting opinion but for my daughter it is perfect… and waaay more age appropriate than A World History of Photography by Naomi Rosenblum.
I, for one, would like to let her have her moment of blissful discovery for all things photographic- anger regarding Kodak (not to mention Ilford, Fuji and Agfa (RIP) et al) can come later. You know, like in art school!