Reflecting

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For years I walked around with a camera in my hand or my purse - usually a Pentax 35mm loaded with b&w film. At one point the light meter stopped working (while I was in Paris). 28 rolls later, I became very good at making informed guesses about the light. Every now and then the film wouldn't advance and the afternoon of swimming with friends in an Oregon river, or the portrait of the girl with a pipe and red boots, would be lost to memory. Discovering the images as the prints developed - looking at the scene anew, always a little amazed when everything came together just as I imagined - that is an experience that can't be replicated or replaced. Almost 10 years ago I bought my first digital camera and began the shift that eventually saw me donating six film cameras and a car full of darkroom equipment in order to travel more, and travel light.

My purse is now more likely to hold a laptop and a phone than a camera, though there are moments like this when I still reach for the ghost of that Pentax.