Yesterday as I was trying to get acquainted with my latest camera purchases I had a quick flashback; I stopped for a moment to reflect the evolution of photography. In front of me was the Canon 5D Mark II, probably the most advanced piece of camera technology to date. I also realized that this purchase marked the half a century anniversary since I got my very first camera, a Brownie that got everything started for me. I was in my last year of middle school; this was only 13 years after the end of WWII in Italy; food was a luxury back then never mind cameras. One of the few good things left over from the Mussolini era was that he created neighborhood recreation centers for kid to go after school instead of roaming the streets. Of course his idea was to create a paramilitary generation but once the political stuff was over the center became an important part of youth development. These centers, and many are still very active today, offered everything kids needed back then and was geared particularly toward poor kids who had very few opportunities for their future, me being one of them. Among the multitude of activities the centers offered tutoring, sports and crafts; I picked photography as I was always fascinated with art and images (and gadgets), thatâ€™s how I received that first Brownie and got my first experience in developing films and prints. Who imagined back that that it would turn into a career. Since that Brownie I owned literally hundreds of cameras and Iâ€™ve seen and made a living from the evolution of photography, film and then video as the technologies evolved right in front of my eyes. What an incredible ride it has been, and still getting better.
And now once again Iâ€™m trying to figure whatâ€™s inside another new camera, things sure got complicated since that Brownie, fortunately the spark is still there.