Tag Archives: camera nerds


Why I do what I do


This is why I do what I do
There are a lot of people who ask me why I do what I do, and the answer is simple…I completely love what I do. Some people want to be an accountant, some people are born to be nurses, but for me I love cameras. But what I love even more than cameras are people. You see, for me this job the main thing is the people. I love going out to the stores and meeting people, I love meeting my customers, I love hearing from all of you. I have been told by a few people that I should have an automated e-mail reply, but I really like taking the time to reply to everyone, it is that personal touch that makes it for me.
But, after all is said and done, I love the gear and I love taking pictures.

Japan is a pretty amazing place when it comes to cameras, and this is one of the reasons why I am here. Where else in the world can you go and visit a store that is completely dedicated to Polaroid cameras? Well, you can here. I visited the wonderful SX70Forever store today and saw something that you are not going to see anywhere else in the world, a store with a massive selection of polaroid cameras and memorabilia. The atmosphere is very relaxed, with old class cabinets and jazz playing on the stereo. It was busy too, with a lot of people coming from all over Tokyo to buy cameras. They have a fantastic selection of used and sometimes unused stock on their shelves.

But this is just one place out of very many. You see there is nowhere quite like Tokyo when it comes to finding cameras. There are more stores than I can possible count. Some of them are huge and very well known, but others are tiny little places tucked into a back alley or side street. I have spent several years trying to find them and build relationships with the owners of these stores. And this is what has given me the chance to do what I do. I can find the things that people want, because I know where to look.

This is just a tiny portion of what is on the shelves in one of the more famous stores in Ginza. The prices are high, but so is the quality. And that is the thing people sometimes don’t understand. Tokyo is not the place to come and find a cheap camera. Aside from the yen being strong, the quality and selection is so high that the stores can charge high prices, as they know that they have the best gear in the world. On this shelf alone you can see lenses that are basically so rare that you cannot find them almost anywhere, especially not in mint condition. But these are all mint.

So really, this is it…this is why I do what I do. I get to go and find all of these items. I get to see the stores, meet the people and most importantly to me, I get to find people something that will make them happy. Because that is what it is all about, you going out and taking pictures. If something that I find you helps you to take more pictures then I have achieved my goal.
I always love to hear from you and love to see your comments. Drop me a line or leave an comment and help me to make what I do even better.


Japanese camera collectors are hardcore

You really have no idea how far the rabbit hole goes . Today I had a pretty good day, I got to play with some special gear

Yeah, I guess it was a good weekend, I got to buy some gear for myself (more of that later), and I got to play with some amazing equipment. I am very fortunate that I am in Japan and the people around me are complete camera hardcore. My wife’s uncle is an amateur photographer. When I hear this I was intrigued, but I didn’t realize how seriously he took it.

I went to his house and found that not only had he been published and won competitions, but he had a serious collection going on. And when I say serious, he puts most pros to shame.
*deep breath*

  1. Two Hasselblad 503CX bodies with 50mm, 80mm, 150mm, 300mm and 500mm lenses, backs etc
  2. A contax G2 black with all of the lenses, including the rare 21mm Biogon!
  3. A contax G1 silver with a complete set of lenses.
  4. A contax T2 silver.
  5. A contax T3 silver.
  6. Contax RTS and Aria bodies and a selection of lenses including 105mm, 150mm, 200mm and 300mm.
  7. A Linhoff Technica and 5 lenses!!!
  8. All the extra bits and bobs that would be part of this, including 6 Gitzo tripods, lightmeters, darkness time calculators and tons of film.

This guy was amazing. He completely lit up when he started to talk about photography and it was wonderful to see someone so passionate about it.
I think this is one of the reasons why I love it here, the people. When they get hold of something, they take it as far as they possibly can, which is usually fat beyond the people from the UK would take it.

And the best thing, he was completely open about his work and what he liked, there was no jaded views on what photography should be, it was just a case of  take pictures of what you like and what makes you happy. I love that way of thinking.

Hopefully he will take me out sometime, or at least let me use some of his gear….