The Camera

In memory of Poppy.

Recently, Poppy (Granddad) passed away. He leaves Nanny, who he was married to for more than 60 years, as well as 3 children and 8 grandchildren.

Poppy always cared for us, though he didn’t see us very often. Separated by a strait, then 650kms, it wasn’t always easy to see us.

During discussions with the family while we were in Auckland, it was brought up that there are various traits Poppy had that are apparent in the grandchildren. For example, he was known to have a particular preference in the type of pencil he used for his work and other activities. One of my younger cousins also has this trait. Poppy was known to take many photos throughout the years, which is something I also enjoy.

At his funeral, there were many photos shown of him throughout his life and stories shared of how he cared for his 3 children (and then 8 grandchildren), including stories from those who couldn’t make it. He set an example for all of us of how to be a good husband, father and grandfather.

One story I remember is from when some of my cousins were at Nanny and Poppys place for dinner, having fish and chips. One of my (female) cousins declared “sweet, let’s pig out!”, to which Poppy replied “we do not ‘pig out’.”

I remember I went to Auckland with my dad one weekend in the mid-90s to stay with Nanny and Poppy. Ruapehu erupted while we were there, so we had to stay longer than planned. There were still plenty of games to play and things to do, though.

An example of the bokeh produced by the 50mm prime lens.

In 2010, Poppy gave me his old Pentax SLR, along with some lenses, filters, a carry bag and a few other useful items. My favourite lens is the 50mm f/1.4 prime lens, which is a nice sharp lens that produces some nice sharp images and a nice bokeh (I’ve put an example of that to the left). I use it with a sunlight filter, which makes the photos appear warmer. Despite being 50-odd years old, it still works very well. Though it may be expensive to use film, there aren’t many people who use film, so it makes a good talking point when meeting people.

In the years since Poppy gave me the camera, I’ve used it many times, mostly at youth group events or family gatherings. I will continue to use it as a way of remembering and honouring Poppy.

The camera produces some very nice looking images. With the aperture on the 50mm lens being so wide, it makes it very easy to focus on certain objects or people. The photo below is an example of that.

RIP Poppy.