At The 2017 Vancouver Camera Swap Meet  

 

A great way to search for bargains

Last minute pricing

Ya gotta concentrate

Check this out

A photographer with attitude

Gosh, a 110 camera

Trying a lens

I like this camera

 

I am usually greeted in the morning by the sounds of my two roosters crowing and the high-flying, neighbourhood crows cawing. But early last Sunday, as I walked across the parking lot to my hotel room carrying two cups of coffee, my morning greeting from the birds was from a loud colony of seagulls. I thought that the sound of the seagulls was a nice hello as I prepared to go to the Vancouver Camera Swap Meet.

Last February I wrote about how I look forward to this event, and that in my opinion, it doesn’t get much better than to spend the day surrounded by a huge selection of cameras and other photography equipment all for sale.

Well, there I was on the first Sunday in April having a great time again. I have been a regular at the Vancouver Camera Swap meet since the 1980s. And as I have written so many times in past articles, I look forward to meeting and talking with the diverse gathering of photographers of all interests, specialties, and lifestyles.

I always rent a table and after my customary quick walk around the hall, I was ready for the 9am rush of photographers looking for bargains. And as usual I was guessing about the latest trend and hoping I brought the right camera equipment to sell.

I only bring what I can fit in my car and space is limited on the eight-foot table the organizers provide. I have found that piling too much on the table not only invites theft, but makes it too hard for people to see what I have as they jostle shoulder to shoulder with other bargain hunters.

Those bargain hunters include all kinds of lifestyles, interests, and photographic specialties. What they all have in common is an interest in photography. That’s it! Everyone there is interested in photography, whether they are looking for film and vintage cameras, or searching for modern digital technology, it’s just all about photography.

As always, I had a great time talking with other photographers. Sure, I like selling things, but selling is only half the fun. Renewing long time friendships, meeting people from all over everywhere, and finding out about their different interests is the other half.

Another Camera Swap Meet is over, and this year was no different than last in that I spent an exhilarating day talking non-stop with other photographers, and even got time to wander a bit checking out all the neat photography equipment.

It was hmm…what’s a good word to describe the Vancouver Camera Swap meet? Invigorating, energizing, stimulating, exhilarating? Or maybe I should just say it was just good fun.

The Vancouver Camera Swap Meet is an excellent way to meet and exchange information with other photographers, and to look at and check out an impressive selection of used photographic equipment that would not be so accessible anywhere else in Canada.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 On Vacation in Vancouver.     

2-laughing-sculpture

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4-denman-street

5-bike-rentals

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9h-park-goose

“We should go on some kind of trip”.  When my wife said that a month ago she didn’t have to do much to convince me.  So about an hour later we had reserved a top floor room at the hotel on the corner of Davie and Denman Streets in Vancouver.

We chose Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, so we would miss the weekend rush.  After a picturesque five-hour drive through British Columbia’s coastal mountains I was carrying suitcases and my bag loaded with our cameras up to our room.

What a great location. Not only were we moments away from the restaurant and bar scene of one of Vancouver’s most exciting areas that divides the city from the magnificent 400-hectare natural rainforest of Stanley Park, but right across the boulevard from our hotel was picturesque English Bay.

I discovered Denman Street when I first moved to Canada in the 1970s. Maybe it was the curiosity I had for a street that sounded and was spelled pretty closely to my name, I don’t know. But in any case the street was just as much fun then as it is all these years later.  One can either join others people watching while sitting at an out door pub, or choose food from almost any country in the world. We chose Greek at the English Bay for our first evening meal of the trip.

The next morning, while my wife slept I put a 24-70mm lens on my camera and headed out. There wasn’t much traffic on the street, or people walking along Denman. It was easy to photograph the buildings and I picked out a funky little coffee shop that we could go to later.  I walked the street and wandered the alley behind our hotel, (I like alleys) then headed for the beach.

My mother always told me to look both ways and be careful of cars when I crossed the street, but she never told me how dangerous it was to cross the bike path along English Bay. I dodged several riders and jumped to the lawn covered with slippery geese droppings when a woman rider zoomed by yelling, “Bikes only!”

I suppose I have become one of those hick tourists gawking at all the sights of the big city, but I reached the safety of the beach where I could meander along pointing my camera where I pleased.  Gosh, I even got to meet local Vancouver photographer Trent Watts, who was kind enough to take time out of his morning to talk with me.

Linda finally got up, and after coffee at the little shop I found earlier, we decided to drive into Stanley Park to take pictures of the harbour and stopped for anything we thought might make a fun picture. We also were looking for a good vantage to take some night pictures of the bright city across the harbour. Gosh, we had so much fun we overlooked having lunch.

Much later we wanted to try our hotel’s fish n’ chips special being offered for supper, however even that had to wait because I stopped to photograph and talk with the two Canadian Mounties who have special dispensation to rest their horses after touring through the park in the cool pleasant entrance of our hotel’s basement parkade.

After supper I went out for night shots of the Granville Street Bridge that crosses both a boat filled water way into English Bay and the shopping district of Granville Island and joined several other photographers on the beach as the sun went down. Then just after 8:30 packed up and drove off for more photos at the location we had chosen in the park.

 

The next morning I must have been tired after all the previous day’s activities, because after I had photographed a white goose honking loudly at me on the beach I checked my watch and it was a late 7AM.  Oh, well I had a good time and anyway I was on vacation!

The Vancouver Camera Swap Meet for Photographers

Every year at this time I attend one of my favorite events, the Vancouver Camera Show and Swap Meet. It was held again this past weekend and the Vancouver Camera Swap meet welcomed both vendors and buyers for a very enjoyable day.  Put on by the Western Canada Photographic Historic Association, and organized by Siggi and Brigitte Rohde, this long-running show has now reached its 36th year and makes the claim of being the largest (and maybe the best) in Canada with well over 1,000 people walking through the doors of the Cameron Recreation Centre (adjacent to Lougheed mall) where it was held.

A large photography and sale like the Vancouver Swap meet brings out an amazing diversity of photographers and what could be better then spending a day surrounded by a vast array of cameras, photography equipment, and talking with other photographers? I’ve been attending over 20 years and for me it’s a great place to sell photography equipment, and it’s a fun day of meeting old friends and making new acquaintances.

My wife and I drove from Kamloops the day before and stayed overnight so I would be fresh for an early start the next day.  As I entered, there is a buzz from other vendors busy setting up, talking, buying, and selling to each other.  I greeted lots of people I have known for years, and then prepared my table to be ready for the swap meets’ early bird shoppers who pay a premium to shop exclusively starting at 9am.  By 10am with the regular admission I was busy showing, demonstrating, explaining, and, of course, bargaining with photographers looking for whatever desirous item they had spotted and hoping for a deal that was just as sweet.

Every year I go wondering what the latest trends are, or what is popular with photographers I will meet there. This year I noticed a change in those I am accustomed to seeing. Many long time sellers and attendees I have known from previous years were absent and were replaced by a much younger crowd. The easy answer might be, like me, they are growing older. But I think it also might have to do with photography’s changing times, and for those that want to hang on to the “good old days”, so that modern technology and how young photographers are using it might be quite unnerving. In previous years I could expect to be accosted by aging “experts” that shuffled up to my table. They usually weren’t there to buy anything, and mostly were only there to show sellers and buyers how much they know, and how much experience they had. This year most of those I have become familiar with over the years were noticeably absent and, in spite of how exasperating some were, I missed them.

Young photographers stopping by my table introduced (for me anyway) a new way of doing photography. I had brought many older, manual-focusing lenses expecting there might be some individuals keen about “retro” equipment and interested in using older cameras from the 1970s and early 1980s, but that didn’t seem to be so this year. This year photographer’s would lay adaptors for different lenses on the table and try different manual lenses with each. They were using modern digital SLR cameras and the adapters allowed them to use the old lenses. And where I would have chosen a focal-length lens like 70mm or longer and stood back to take a portrait, these innovative photographers were selecting 28mm and 50mm lenses, and then moving in very close for portraits of each other when they tested out the lenses.  Photography is certainly not a static medium and is constantly changing.

In my opinion, an occasion like the Vancouver Swap is a perfect place to meet other photographers, learn what others are doing, and of course find excellent deals on many kinds of photographic equipment. Whether buying, selling, or just having a good time with other photographers, other than actually taking pictures, I couldn’t recommend a better way to spend one’s time.

www.enmanscamera.com

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