The History Poster turned into a page

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David Kilpatrick
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The History Poster turned into a page

Unread postby David Kilpatrick » Sat Jul 07, 2007 5:08 pm

On Friday July 5 I sat down and systematically processed all the original source files from the Minolta Co 70th Anniversary wall poster, which showed 113 key products from 1928 to 1998, then entered the captions shown on the poster with a few amendments.

The result is a very long page but with plenty of large images of historic Minolta cameras:

http://photoclubalpha.com/useful-and-vi ... n-decades/

David

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Greg Beetham
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Unread postby Greg Beetham » Fri Jul 13, 2007 2:32 pm

I had a good long look (about an hour) at this when you posted the link over at dpreview, thanks for you efforts David.
It still seems incredible too me that Minolta could not get their own facts right on (presumably) their own poster??? And also that they could just walk away from such an illustrious history, without it would seem, much of a fight, and the people who supported their product.
Regards Greg
ps. You must have a lovely collection.

David Kilpatrick
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Unread postby David Kilpatrick » Fri Jul 13, 2007 6:53 pm

I don't have - I sold many items, including my Minolta 35 Model A, my 1937 folding Minolta press camera, and my Autocord kit which included the parallax corrector and twin polarizer. I have a residual collection remaining I guess, but in end, working modern equipment comes first and I have too much of that.

We are due to have a massive clearout - thirty years in more or less the same business, twenty publishing magazines, I have entire rooms full of selected back issues (even just keeping three per edition), negative and slide files - not mention about a thousand photographic books, and a good three thousand other books - enough to stock a bookstore. Even just the software packs from the past occupy a large closet. We need to move, because I just don't earn the turnover to support all the space which stores this stuff - my former darkroom, former offices, former studio etc are nearly all full of unused, stored publications and items. I already gave away a carload of studio gear to a local camera club.

Digital shooting has changed SO much. My real productivity is way higher than ever - it's not longer a matter of needing a sheet of negs to pick the three frames you want to print. I know it's criminal but I am tempted to bin the entire 40 years of back material rather than face the thousands of hours needed to convert it to digital form. I'd rather spend that time shooting new material!

And, for the same reason, where I once used to shoot with the old classic cameras - I never just collected them - I do not think I would want to shoot film again. That would make the 'collection' just a museum and I am happy to leave that to others.

Dick Luff, who was MD of Minolta UK for a long period, has a superb collection. He was a Minolta collector before he became MD and continued afterwards.

David

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Greg Beetham
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Unread postby Greg Beetham » Sat Jul 14, 2007 6:00 am

Sounds like some difficult decisions ahead there David, maybe a small shipping container in the corner of the back yard perhaps, to store the keeper stuff and possibly donate books too a library or historical bookstore, I'm glad it's you and not me.
Greg

David Kilpatrick
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Unread postby David Kilpatrick » Sat Jul 14, 2007 10:37 am

The books will probably be sold via Amazon. It's very difficult to decide whether to keep hold of 1st edition shrinkwrapped Mapplethorpe etc, and sell all the textbooks and minor stuff, because one Mapplethorpe is worth about the same as twenty mint Roger Hicks or Lee Frost :-)

David

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Omega892
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Unread postby Omega892 » Thu Aug 16, 2007 4:16 pm

David Kilpatrick wrote:Digital shooting has changed SO much. My real productivity is way higher than ever - it's not longer a matter of needing a sheet of negs to pick the three frames you want to print. I know it's criminal but I am tempted to bin the entire 40 years of back material rather than face the thousands of hours needed to convert it to digital form. I'd rather spend that time shooting new material!
David

Yes digital has had a massive impact on how and what one shoots.

However, does ditching old images out of hand like this not bother you in any way? Shooting new stuff is fine but how do you know that shots on film will not have future historic value? For example, I have shots that I took of lower Manhatten from the head of the Statue of Liberty in early 1972. These shots cannot be repeated for two reasons; firstly the still incomplete twin towers of the WTC are no longer there and access to the head of Liberty is now restricted by structural defects.

Of course such pictures are only any good when the person who has a use for discovers their existence.

Then there is the aspect of preserving a digital image over time which will necessitate moving from media to media, device to device as standards and even the OS change. I have a feeling that where we can pull photographs of our Victorian ancestors out of cupboards and use these in family trees and for other purposes, future generations (and I am not that sanguine about how many of these there are going to be considering many potentially adverse factors) are likely to find nothing but a black hole.

Just some thoughts on the subject.
'Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.' - Benjamin Franklin

David Kilpatrick
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Unread postby David Kilpatrick » Thu Aug 16, 2007 4:37 pm

I fear that most of negs and slides are probably not in the best condition now. Some are perfect, often those which were not filed but just thrown into boxes uncut. Those which were put in Paterson filing sheets, Kenro display sheets etc are nearly all ruined by fibres migrating, plastic stick to emulsions, PVC plasticisers affecting the film base, etc. The best preserved stuff is probably the mounted slides in boxes in filing cabinets - but that is not labelled. All my b/w negs were captioned and labelled and dated in their sheets, 30-40 years of storage hasn't really improved them and they scan very badly.

My hand has been forced too often - having to shift truckloads of stored stuff out of one place to make way for building work, storing it in another which turns out not be free from damp, never really being able to afford modern dry secure premises. The last step was when we had to have a building demolished, and on recovering the few boxes of old prints in there, discovered that some I did value (seriously) had been dumped out there in a previous clear-out and were destroyed beyond recovery.

We actually face an impossible situation - all 6,000 sq feet of the house we live in is completely full. One entire wing is full of disused office equipment and furniture, full filing cabinets, shelves and shelves of magazines. It costs me £3000 a year just in rates to keep this stuff there. I gave loads of old studio gear to a local photo society last year, but it makes no impression. I could rent a 2000 square foot factory unit and transfer all this stuff, but it earns me no money at all - it just represents what a business builds up in 30 years of operation. It would cost me £12,000 a year to store it all and for the most part, it doesn't even have a resale value.

The slides and negs could probably be stored in twenty Viking archive boxes but I already have fifty such boxes full of other items. One box contains old tape and Syquest and MagOpt drive units and all the media associated with them - none of which I can read, and all of which apart from the images belongs to some ancient version of PageMaker (etc). I spent a week earlier this year trying to recover the tapes. No luck!

My modern digital photo archives, in contrast, occupy approximately ten cubic inches for the last five years. I think they will outlive me better than the old film archives.

David

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Re: The History Poster turned into a page

Unread postby xm motor 76 » Tue Jun 24, 2008 2:33 pm

David
May I make one correction for the Dynax 9 entry - the shell was stainless steel - the titanium came later as the Dynax 9 Ti!

David Kilpatrick
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Re: The History Poster turned into a page

Unread postby David Kilpatrick » Sun Jun 29, 2008 3:01 pm

Yes, I will change that. The 9 along with the Vectis 300 compact camera introduced an entirely new way of pressing stainless steel without work-hardening problems. They later extended the same method to pressing titanium.

David


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