Glad I’ve got some photos, dad.
My dad and I never did talk about it much.
That whole thing about being a dad, what you should know, best ways to bring up a child, teaching, discipline, etc..
He had plenty to talk about on every other subject, though.
Photography was something we could connect on, since when he was a young man he dabbled in the shooting/darkroom thing.
Not that he continued on with it, but he always wanted to have a nice camera. And he loved gear and gadgets. All kinds.
Here he is listening to a pro recorder I had purchased. Knowing it was broadcast quality, reminded him of his days as a radio announcer in NYC.
His voice always had a solid timbre; very smooth, clear, and distinctive. And rich. His 6’2″ frame and barrel chest supported the sound.
One of the companies he worked for gave him a photography setup as a gift with camera/tripod/processing gear, etc.
It was passed on to my brother, who in turn passed bits of it onto me. I used the camera and the tripod in my formative shooting years, but all of it now sits in a box, in a storage unit.
One thing he did teach me about being a dad, were some ways to connect with images to your children. It was by example, not lesson.
I’ll never forget a gift he gave me on my 18th birthday, which was a folio he made containing pictures of me through my life, complete with commentary. Each page had photos of the men in the family, mainly he, my brother and myself, which was the bonding part. There was also a shot of him as a patriarch. Sitting proudly, smiling in a large backed chair.
Maybe since I was turning 18, the clubhouse door was opened, and this was the personalized charter.
I have it to this day.
Then it was my turn.
I was one of the first in my group to have a child, and all of my buddies asked it I was afraid that having a child was going to change my life. Actually, that was the point, I thought.
As a photographer dad, my only child has been documented 100x fold, with stills and video. Album,after album, cassette upon cassette (now transferred onto DVD)
She is wise to the ways of the photo world and has had cameras around her all of her life. Of course she had a camera in her hands at 3, with her first images showing the closer to the ground perspective, and the unique viewpoint of a curious child.
On one of her birthdays, I gave her one of my old Nikon bodies with a lens. Maybe it was the passing on of a torch of sorts, but she took it and has used it, at least a few times.
Then one year she made a book of our photos, and the time we spent together. Hanging out, Saturdays were always Kate and daddy day.
This book sits on the coffee table and every now and then, I take a look through and think about the times past, and how fast it moves.
The photos have saved it for us.
I’ve always thought of Fathers Day as a marketing based Hallmark Holiday, like so many others. But since everyone else seem to be on board with it, it seemed a perfect day to say thanks to my dad, for whatever he taught me.
I hope I’ve done a good job.
He never did get to meet his granddaughter. She had not yet come into this world, before he was gone.
And I guess I’ve kept the personalized photo album flame alive with a video I made for my daughters’ birthday. With clips of videos from her early years, to stills of the same.
Not posting here because it’s too long, don’t want to bore you.
The point of it all is that with a personal archive of imagery, you can touch the people in your life like no one else can.
Highly recommend it.
So celebrate your dad on Sunday! (Other days wouldn’t hurt either.)
And thanks to my daughter for making me a very proud father!!