Photograph by Robert Godfried
I have always had a passion for music. I was constantly attempting to learn to play almost every instrument that came across my path. Sadly, I never succeeded although my heart was always in the right place. Among the instruments I enjoyed most, was this "Bouzouki" that was loaned to me by a friend. For several months I struggled to play one or two "tunes." The best I ever managed was an improvisation with a group of real musicians who surrounded me late one night at someone's house. Eventually I was forced to return the instrument to its rightful owner but I always longed to replace it. The photo was taken by my friend Bob who was kind enough to let me dwell in spare room for about a year or two. A fascinating and highly intelligent friend who is full of talent and knowledge. I learned a great deal from him at the time. The photograph was likely taken with my 35 mm Minolta SR 7. I enjoyed "sepia" toning at the time and probably poisoned myself more than once in whatever darkroom I was able to build or borrow.
A great memory of my experiences at this location was regarding one weekend in particular when my friend, Bob was away. I fell asleep sometime around midnight only to be woken up by a loud crackly voice about an hour later. The voice stopped as I looked around the room but could not locate the source. This continued throughout the night, I would hear a voice, awaken, look around, and eventually fall asleep. All night long I checked the apartment, checked the windows, and questioned my own sanity. The next morning as I was preparing to go out for the day, I heard the voice once again! "The time is now 9:00 A.M...The time is now 9:00 A.M." I traced the source of the voice to a disc playing alarm device set at full volume to announce the time every hour on the hour. I waited a few weeks until I too would be away for the weekend and initiated my revenge! I was told it worked!
My first cameras were an 8mm Keystone and a great big box containing a tiny Kodak Brownie "Holiday Flash" and all the equipment necessary for lighting and film development. I recall jumping for joy when I viewed my first self-processed image including fingerprints, dust marks, and faded grey edges! The joy of my chemical darkroom work had begun!