by J. Ramón Palacios
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kids and the Exaktas ...
to the Exa, its toyish appearance and its reduced shutter speed
made her to be left in the closet more and more frequently. The
new films offered better grain; there was no need to hold one's
breath and shoot at low speed. It had been a long while that she
was only used at 1/150 of a second, it's top shutter speed which
practically prevented me from using lenses of over 135mm of focal
length without a tripod.
I took her out just to see her, caress her and to remember the moments
whose pictures she let me capture. I actioned her shutter at all
speeds and focus with all of her lenses at real and at imaginary
Exa Ia - Ihagee - Dresden, Germany
of that it is possible she did not die of sadness; she knew I
had loved her very dearly. On every occasion I took her out, she
functioned as the first day out of the box.
the Exa, my Exaktas were the ones capturing myriads of images
and emotions: our honey moon, our double passing through
the Ivy League, the birth of our children, their infancy
I only used the exposure meter under difficult light conditions,
the Gossen House was always present, along with the Ihagee
House and the House of Zeiss, in my heavy gadget bag for
our numerous trips.
Saltillo, Philadelphia, Puebla, México City, Querétaro,
San Miguel Allende, Washington, New York, the Pocono mountains,
San Diego, Quantico, Bethesda, Atlanta, Langley, San Diego, Palo
Alto, Los Angeles, San Juan de Puerto Rico, intermediate towns
and many others, provided scenarios for the family pictures.
from my darkroom, my daughter Tatiana in her protection and play
pen, when she was 8 months old in Philadelphia (lucky handheld
shot under available light, probably at f/4, 1/15 sec on Tri-X)
and my son Juan Ramón, smiling at his mother under a window's
light at three months of age in Monterrey, Mexico.