Saturday, June 28, 2014

A Tale of Fixin' the Old and Bringin' in the New

Jennifer, Chilinic, and his Mama, Flickinic.
Last Monday, I was shooting some personal project stuff with my friend, Diana, performing the modeling chores. We had trekked to a cool location I spotted a few weeks earlier while driving back from another friend's place. My other friend is Jennifer and she has a small horse ranch not too far from my home.

One of Jennifer's horses had recently given birth and Jenn had asked me to shoot some pics she could use to register her new colt, Chili, a.k.a., Chilinic, with the official quarter horse registry.  I'm no cowboy, that's for sure, but I am a camera-slinging Paladin -- Have Camera Will Travel -- so I was happy to oblige... Ma'am.

Diana and I had just gotten started shooting our theme-based, personal-project pics when my camera suddenly went bonkers. I was shooting with a Lensbaby (for the first time ever) and, at first, I thought the Lensbaby had messed up. That's because I had won the Lensbaby in an eBay auction but the seller broke it while packing it for shipping so he returned my money and sent it to me anyway, free of charge.  My son-in-law, however, got his hands on it and was able to fix my new and broken novelty lens by completely disassembling it, applying a bit of crazy glue to the internal part that was broken, and putting it back together. Free Lensbaby! Gotta love that. And it works perfectly!

Snapped with the Lensbaby before my camera broke.
I pulled the Lensbaby off my Canon 5D classic, thinking it was the problem, but instead discovered the mirror had fallen off inside my camera. Bummer! To make matters worse, before heading out to shoot with Diana I had moved some gear around from bag to bag and, as a result, managed to head out to the somewhat remote location, like a dumb-ass, without a backup camera. (Insert hard face-palm slap.) So, not only was my 5Dc toast, but so was the shoot. Again, bummer.  (Note: If you might think some of my personal photography is a bit weird, you may be right. I prefer to think of it as "experimenting." I can still competently snap a pretty girl pic or two -- and more -- without the "weird" factor attached, and I can do so consistently and on demand. Just bragging... I mean saying.)

After I arrived back home, I shared my misfortunes with a few people online. One of them told me Canon would repair my camera for free! Say what??? Yep. It seems the mirror issue is a long-known problem with that camera model. I called Canon the next day and, sure enough, even though my 5D is about 7 years old with hundreds of thousands of shutter actuations, they'll fix it gratis, including paying for the shipping back and forth from me to Canon. (Canon just renewed my long-time, 30-year-plus, brand loyalty.)  The friend who told me about the free repair said it happened to him as well and, not only did Canon repair the problem, when his camera came back it had undergone something of a transformation: They had given it a complete cleaning, inside and out, including inside the view finder, and it suddenly looked and acted like a new camera again. 

But the story gets better. Way better!

Rear view glam snap. Click to enlarge.
Another friend, someone I've met once and who is a long-time reader of this blog, contacted me after seeing my Facebook stuff regarding what happened with my camera. Because of my camera mirror misfortune, he asked if I might be interested in purchasing his backup camera, a gently used Canon 5DmkII.  Buying a new camera body wasn't on my radar -- except maybe for a Fuji XT-1 which I'd love to have but still don't have immediate plans to purchase -- but I still asked him how much? You know, out of curiosity and courtesy if little else. In response, he said he was gonna make me an offer I could not refuse.

When he told me the offer, I immediately realized it was, indeed, one I could not refuse! I told him his offer was nearly too good to be true but he replied that I've helped him much with his photography over the years, via the blog and more, and as a result he feels he owes me. I assured him he didn't owe me anything but he insisted his offer was genuine and sincere. He also told me to shut up and suggested I accept his offer in the spirit it was being extended.

Well, since he put it that way... plus me not being one to look a gift horse in the mouth, my friend Jennifer's horses notwithstanding, I accepted his kind offer and immediately PayPal'd him the incredibly kind (and relatively paltry) amount he was asking for the camera.  According to USPS tracking, my new (to me) Canon 5DmkII will arrive today!  I'm stoked!  I'll be shipping my broken 5DmkI to Canon on Monday and, when it comes back, freshly cleaned and newly mirrored, it will be relegated to backup/2nd-cam camera status. (Not that I don't still love my 5D classic. I do!) And I still want a Fuji XT-1, but that's another story.

My photography and blogging karma it seems, is in the green! Yep!. Apparently, it's intact with a balance on the plus side of the column. Thank you so much! (You know who you are.) As requested, I'm respecting your request for anonymity.

By the way, this is my 999th update. Thought I'd mention that because that means my next update will be my 1000th post to this blog!  One thousand updates! Talk about milestones!  (Patting myself on the back while high-fiving myself... which is tricky since, like most people, I only have two arms and two hands.) I'll be posting number 1000 on the 4th of July which also happens to be the Pretty Girl Shooter blog's 8th anniversary! Nice how it works out that way. Even those who aren't particularly impressed with my writing or my photography must, at least, give me credit for persistence if nothing else.


Bill Giles said...

Sorry to hear about your 5DmkI, but I think that you have gotten very good service from it and may still. I think that you chose wisely.

jimmyd said...

BillG: Lately, I've been messing with some manual focus only glass, leastwise for my personal stuff. The 5D2's live view screen on the back is gonna help a lot with manual focusing, methinks.