My First Canonet Roll in Five Years

My husband bought me a Canonet as a Christmas present in 2011. I wanted a small, vintage camera that I could tinker with and carry around with me when I needed an artistic nudge. At the time I was still using all of my cameras on auto (I know…bad Lina) and I had no idea how to use this thing.

It only added to the intrigue, really.

Sadly, I was only able to get about one good roll before the shutter button stopped working (on my 25th birthday…while on vacation in Chicago).

I was brokenhearted, but after calling around we realized it was going to cost more to repair the Canonet than what my husband paid for it. I sighed, placed it on the shelf with my other cameras, and figured it was over. Occasionally I would lift the camera and make a pouty face, sigh again, and return it to its place.

Goodbye Canonet….or so I thought.

Recently, however, I learned about a nearby camera-man who only fixes film cameras. And with the film craving returning, I decided to just go for it. I sent in my beautiful sweet baby Canonet and paid the 125$ to have it cleaned and repaired. It came back to me with a brand-new battery, a roll of film, and a working shutter.

A working shutter!

I went out and shot my first roll on it since January 2012. I chose Ilford HP5+ and processed it with Caffenol CM-RS. Once I scanned the images, I remembered why I love this camera so much! It’s lightweight, it’s small, it’s got a cute little lens…

and the pictures it takes are timeless.

Most people want tack-sharp photos these days. While I’ll admit that I love my cave photos to be sharp-sharp so that I can really bring out the texture of the rock, images like the one above often turn out to be my favorites. The blurriness of the waterfall–happy accident?–and the slight texture of the leaves in the top left-hand corner, hopefully give the viewer something to ponder.

I was so happy when I saw the shot above after inverting it in LR. It’s exactly what I was going for when I raised the Canonet to my eye. I barely did any editing, which I find is a huge plus to film photography.

I love the pentagon shapes of the water droplets here, as if the aperture itself wanted a self-portrait. The waterfall looks like glitter.

I haven’t added another roll to the camera since this one. I’m waiting for our big trip to Cedar Point this weekend. My mom–who has funded much of this stay-at-home mom’s photography passion–bought me eleven rolls to take with me.

Two of these rolls, however, are 120. A surprise is on the way!

All images © Lina Forrester, 2017


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