Author name: Dave Powell

Trained in mathematics, physics, astronomy and Fortran computer programming. Retired mathematician, technical magazine editor, and documentation writer. 1989 winner of the Bruce B. Howat Award, an international business-journalism equivalent of the Pulitzer Prize (though I don't think the Howat is given out anymore). Past author and editorial advisor for Sesame Street (where I even worked with Jim Henson and Kermit)!

Fake UFO Photo

A Tale of Two UFOs (a One-Shot Story)

If you’d like to have some fun, go to a photo exhibit when the photographer is there. Find an image that intrigues or puzzles you, and ask if they can tell you more about its context. Was anything of potential interest occurring outside the image frame when they triggered the shutter? Or did a wider context of events occur over days, months or even years before or after the shot?

You may get a blank look. Or you might hear a book. If I’d been exhibiting the above terrible fake photo, you’d get a book.

Radioactive Pentax Lens

Don’t Sleep with Yellow Lenses, Darlin’

Photographers who remember the Petula Clark 1967 hit single that’s paraphrased in the title will also probably know what it’s talking about! Regardless of how much one might love the above highly respected lens (and others of its era), try to resist sleeping with them under one’s pillow! You may also want to avoid hanging them on cameras around your neck for extended periods.

They’re radioactive. And I thought it would be good to share this story with the growing band of younger photographers who are even now discovering vintage camera equipment.

Canon VI-T Camera

Canon VI-T (a Tale of a Treasured Camera)

What makes a camera treasured? Often, it was owned by a family member. Or it may simply become an invaluable part of a photographer’s arsenal. This beautiful, tank-like, Canon VI-T rangefinder was neither. In fact I almost sold it for parts on “the ‘Bay.” But quickly decided not to.

A Flawed Beauty

I paid just $5 for it at a garage sale around 30 years ago. It looked beautiful, and the left-handed Trigger Winder in its base plate (extended in the photo) still seemed to work

The House on Sunset Hill

The Haunting on Sunset Hill (a One-Shot Story)

This cute little building was the fraternity house on the college campus that made me whole. But it’s also where I survived my most terrifying “paranormal” experience ever. And I’ve had quite a few. Granville, Ohio, 1966 When I arrived at Denison University, this was the American Commons Club (ACC) house. After that “non-Greek” organization …

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