New additions to my Brownie collection

The spring thunderstorms returned last week after a brief hiatus, so no photography for me this weekend. That’s okay, I had several boring errands that I’d been putting off, and the car was overdue for an oil change.

I found myself clicking around the backwoods of eBay while I binge-watched the 3rd season of House of Cards on Saturday afternoon. See, I think I neglected to mention this in my blog entry about my trip out to Tickfaw last weekend, but on my way back home I swung through Baton Rouge to stop at Circa 1857, one of my favorite antique stores. And lo and behold, I found one of my most-desired Kodak Brownies, a Target, for just $25. (Using metrics that are a complete mystery to almost everyone who collects cameras, the market value of this camera has been determined at $6. You will never, ever, EVER find one for that cheap, anywhere. I consider $25 to be a bargain.)

target

That got me thinking of another Brownie I’ve long been on the trail of, the Jiffy, a model which slightly preceded the Target, although later models of the Jiffy and earlier models of the Target were sold at the same time. So that’s how I came to be on eBay. Normally I prefer to buy my cameras in stores, partly so I can make sure the shutter works, but also because it feels more “earned” when I find my cameras IRL. I’m readier to part with money because what are the odds I’ll ever find one again? However, vintage cameras are gaining in popularity, making them rarer finds (especially in good condition) and driving up the prices in stores.

jiffy

So anyway, long story short, I found one I liked, no one else bid on it and I got it for the starting bid of $19.99 and $5 shipping. The seller says the shutter works and they have 100% positive feedback so I suppose they’re trustworthy. Although it doesn’t matter so much, as I primarily want these cameras for their collectibility and Art Deco faceplates. But I like to know I could use all of the cameras I collect, even if I’m unlikely to in some cases.

Now I just need a Beau, and I will have the trifecta of Art Deco Brownies. That one’s gonna be hard though, that model was only made from 1930-1933–the colored ones (blue, green, rose) only until 1931.

beau

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I’ve been wandering

I had planned another road trip this spring, to the Missouri Ozarks. But then my car up and died—it had over 180,000 miles on it, and the problem was actually fixable but not worth the money it would cost—so I had to go into money-saving mode. I don’t want car payments taking a huge bite out of my paycheck for the next several years, so I want to pay for half of a new car in cash and get a loan from my bank for the rest. Well, “new” in the sense that it’s new to me; the plan is to get a Toyota or similar with about 30,000 miles on it from Enterprise.

So I’ve been scratching my photography itch by going out on day trips any Saturday that isn’t a semi-tropical monsoon. The Ozarks will be just as beautiful—more so, even—in autumn.

These are just cell phone shots, I have film out for development.

Leeville Cemetery

A cemetery in Leeville so close to the water (that’s a shrimp boat in the background) that it had to be cemented over to keep the graves from washing away in a storm surge.

Holy Mary Shrine

A roadside shrine in Golden Meadow that I photographed for my Saints of Louisiana project (which I am starting to fear will never be completed).

Adam's Fruit Stand

Adam’s Fruit Stand in Matthews.

Cemetery in Cade, LA

A cemetery in Cade that I stumbled across while driving from New Iberia to Lafayette.

Sailing

Sailboats on Lake Pontchartrain sailing past the New Canal Lighthouse, the last functioning lighthouse in Louisiana.

Maison de Reprise

The “Maison de Reprise” of Laura Plantation in Vacherie. I just photographed it from the parking lot, but I’m having the next meetup there.

Tomb of Valcour Aime

Upside-down torch detail on the original tomb of Valcour Aime (his remains have since been moved to New Orleans) in St. James. Aime was a sugar planter who was so rich he is sometimes called “The Louis XIV of Louisiana”. Google him, he was a fascinating man.

Sugarcane field

Sugarcane field in Vacherie.

Saint Amico Chapel

The Saint Amico Chapel in Donaldsonville.

IMG_20150411_142013_840

And the latest edition to my collection, purchased last weekend at the semi-annual sale at the Old Schoolhouse Antiques mall in Washington. I have a soft spot for Brownies.