the last camera

I swear, this is the last one I’ll buy in Kyrgyzstan.

Dun duh-duh daaaaaaah:

But what a great way to end my Soviet camera purchases, with my dream camera: the Sputnik. A friend and I stopped into an antiques shop that I had previously visited searching for the Sputnik. I wasn’t looking for any more cameras, we were checking out 35mm ones for her, but I heard him say in Russian, “I have a Sputnik” and I perked up from inspecting something and responded, in English, “NO WAY, HE HAS A SPUTNIK? AWESOME I WANNA SEE IT!!” It’s in pretty decent shape and he was selling it at a price I couldn’t pass up. At $75, it’s the most expensive film camera I’ve purchased (compared to $8-12 for my other ones), but considering that most Sputniks sell for more than $100 on Ebay, I feel like I got a good deal.

I just finished a test roll of 120 film (that I bought in the US, apparently it’s impossible to find here in Bishkek), which I’ll try to get developed here (there’s supposedly one guy that develops 120 film [even though nobody sells it]). I’m so so excited to see how it turns out. The special thing about this camera is that it takes two photos at once that can be viewed under special glasses to look 3D. Eh?! Eh!? Isn’t that awesome?!

I didn’t actually expect to find one, but I’m happy to round out my collection with this guy and check off one more item from my Ticket List.

(oh yeah, speaking of the List, I still do not have an actual plane ticket yet. We’re planning on leaving in the next two weeks though. Am I stressing? Ha! Of course. Ugh.)

PS: I’ll organize them under a tag or category eventually, but for now here are all of my other posts regarding film photography or Soviet-era film cameras:
a new era
my newest addition
Karakol antiques (I managed to take a few successful photos with the Smena 6, but the guy who developed the film refused to scan the whole roll for only three or four shots.)
Soviet camera obsession
Orto Sai haul
Kyrgyzstan in film
Painted trolleys
More fun with film

I guess when I move to Belgium, I’ll have to start hunting for old Leicas. Ha! ha… no, I’m just kidding. I think I’d rather pay rent or buy food then spend many many hundreds of dollars on a film camera, especially when the early Feds and Zorkis were made to be exact copies of Leicas.

4 replies on “the last camera”

  1. Seriously amazing! I love this part of living in the former USSR (though the exorbitant price of getting 120 film developed in Moscow is a real downer). Best of luck getting it done.

  2. You are moving?? I have been reading your blog for a while now with my impending move to Kyrgyzstan and I am bummed!

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