A family birthday

35mm in the Time of Coronavirus – By Steph Powell

Our family camera was kept in a sock drawer. It was brought out of the Queen Anne cupboard for family occasions during the 90s. Dad would load the film into the chamber. It would snap shut and then the automatic mechanism would whirl, setting the film in place. In my childhood this camera was for pictures of grandparents holding babies, or of myself, siblings and cousins lined up at a birthday or Christmas. They were glossy, red-eyed and often out of focus or frame. But what they captured was lively, an aunt in the middle of saying something to someone off camera. A child, impatient to run out to the backyard or to the kitchen to eat.