10th PENTAX DAY
Come on guys, the
10th Pentax Day is going to open. Everything is ready and the sun is
bright. Breakfast at the agriturismo and some talk with the Romans.
Already 9 am, time to move!
Coming people are well impressed
about the location, wide space, families with children and freedom of
movements inside and outside the location. Welcome to all the wives,
friends and girlfriends of Pentax photographers and vice-versa.
There a little boy
(Edo) son-of-artist that shots continuously and with expertise, consuming
meters of film. He wears a fully coloured T-Shirt signed by Pentax, his
father’s gift. In the afternoon this man will remember his son that his
film has finished early, then his Pentax has to rest, finally. From an
educational point of view, I’m wondering how it will work with a digital
camera (full memory card?). We’ll see next year.
Attending members always stop at
the registration table, which provides new subscriptions (a few) and many
renewals for the year 2005; also on sale are the CDs with pictures of the
9th PDAY in Spoleto and earlier ones. Finally, the first book promoted by
AOHC shows up on the table. It’s "Asahiflex & Asahi Pentax
1952-1975" by Danilo Cecchi – edited by Il Giardino del Libro
Fotografico di Castel San Giorgio-Salerno. Distributed since last summer,
it was officially presented last September in Milan. You can also get the
set of Spotmatic postcards, showing portraits of "sweet babies"
as the author call them. As you can guess, they are Asahi Pentax screw
mount bodies of the 60s and 70s, all well equipped by their optics.
Ermanno is distributing all the certificates from AOHC National Registry,
provided only to the owners of Screw mount Asahi Pentax cameras. I can get
one too, related to my SPII, in my opinion the best Spotmatic ever due to
its extended sensitivity in low light conditions.
building, local members have set-up a local reception, where you can have
any kind of drink. You can find three different type of local wines,
branded AOHC 10th PDAY. The idea is working good: booking the product is
the best way to find it at the end of the day. Many people are stopping
here during the day.
In addition we can find an elegant box containing the memorial silver pin
celebrating the 10th anniversary of our event. Someone says it’s a
collector’s item, but I prefer to show it aside my gold-red AOHC lapel
People continue to stop at this desk, surely attracted by the wine that
Romans have brought and that helps fighting the hot sun in this afternoon.
The fresh shade of
the photo exhibition attracts many people; I can also see and feel the big
interest for the Pentax K-series cameras and lenses. Thanks to Fabio,
Alberto, Mr. Bogen-Imaging (aka Arnaldo Calanca), Dario and others we can
admire the ‘best youth’ of the ‘70s. Actually the historians call
them ‘the anomalous series’ being the SMC Takumar optics that changed
the diameter of their front ring from 49mm to 52mm, their mount from screw
to bayonet, and only lasted 2 years or so. Some of them could be less
appealing than the screw type homologous, but this anomaly is particularly
As cameras are more and more
equipped, their size increase, only to decrease again when new
technologies are developed, in the never ending race to have the smaller,
lighter, sweet and usable equipment. Always with the gentle, almost
feminine, Pentax ‘touch’.
Shining of its own light, we can
see an entirely gold plated LX model. In its precious wood case, it seems
like a golden Buddha.
Here they are, all the K bodies, rather massive and overweight compared to
the sleek and slim M series exposed beside them. In this next series the
diameter turns back to 49, the minimum stop remains 22 and the writings on
the front become smaller. Uppercase is replaced by lowercase lettering,
little aesthetics details meaning that years were passing by.
BOGEN IMAGING stand
seems a tripod plantation. Very interesting is the latest generation of
tripods, so light and reliable with their multi-articulated heads… when
will a stick-tape tripod be available? There are also some Steiner
binoculars and Lastolite backgrounds, so useful for shooting models.
Models…. Hey! Where are they??
Sekonic professional light
meters are also on show, with their many memories and various
Tecno 2000 is overflooded by
people asking to check their cameras, a strategic resource for all the
Pentax Day attendees.
At the PROTEGE stand you can even put your hands and give a try on a
pre-release sample of the 50-200 DA lens, a perfect companion for the
This *istD is attracting me,
especially for that green reflection, almost an alien calling, originated
by the ‘S’ on a green field. It seems to be a wink. More ornaments
like that are also present on the latest optics. Heading back to green
stars and strips of the M and A era, such color appeals work well for sure.
On the table there is also a little beach-chair. The set is a sea
environment and serves as stage for the new digital camera Pentax Optio WP
Models arrive at
10.30 am and enter the changing room. Gloria has brown straight hair,
Melania doesn’t. She’s blonde and short. Let’s see how well they can
manage non-professional photographers!
When they come out they start to
pose on the Vespa scooters, then on a historic car by Peugeot. After that
they pose in a Fiat 600, trying to match all their roundings to those of
the Fiat body. The bright sun suggests some fill-in flash to light the
shades. Better to move to the covered portion of the Cascina.
The photo exhibition is a must-see for all attendees. Everybody is
appreciating our members’ photographic efforts. Many say that the
overall quality of the exhibition is increasing every time. That’s maybe
due to the huge presence of the B&W pictures. Let’s vote the best
pictures and then wait and see who won.
Outside, in the soccer field,
there are a couple of matches organized for the meeting. Those are child
teams that will be awarded at our desks.
It’s the noon and upstairs
tables are being prepared for the lunch. Great lunch with good wine and
"baccalà alla vicentina" (dried salted cod). Some turnover
allows everybody to join the lunch without leaving our reception desk
unattended. It’s a relaxing time, with photo chat and touching some
great optics brought by other members.
After lunch it’s
time to get into the annual general meeting. As usual we propose to keep
the lenght under one hour, somebody bets on half an hour but it’s an
impossible task with 41 people wanting to expose their own opinion. The
best way to keep it under the hour is reminding that the models are still
waiting for us after the meeting.
In 40 minutes, the
following is decided:
1. 11th Pentax Day will
take place in Rome or surroundings, organized by Fabio Cittadini and
2. Subject of the next photo contest Pentax Day:
a. Action (either calendar contest
or photo of the day)
b. Free subject (photo of the day
No matters if BW or color with 45x45 cm frame. Each AOHC member can
exhibit 5 pictures in section A and 5 pictures in section B. Max 10
3. The calendar will be made also for the year 2006. For cost reduction
purposes it will be made in a different format. 60 x 40cm bended in 2
4. Due to the reduction of the incomings and the little drop of
subscriptions, the club accepts a sponsorship from BOGEN IMAGING, to cover
expenses for AOHC 2006 calendar. Thank you Arnaldo!!
Ok, now it’s time
to choose between models or chatting with friends about the pictures on
display and other topics. Some families are regrouping around a seat and a
relaxing atmosphere is the feel of this late afternoon.
Judges are walking with
discretion through the photo exhibition. Rumors are growing about the
winner. The result is that 15 are the picture selected, 13 of which in
B&W for the calendar 2006. The two remaining pictures are an ex-aequo.
So we are meeting around a table to celebrate the winners. Augugliaro
begins with a gentle introduction, slightly emotional; there is a lot of
sentiment in what he’s saying and all the attendees agree with that.
Alberto Taccheo gets the prize for the more ‘lived’ and still fully
working Pentax K-series camera (a K2). Then it’s Dario’s time. Our
president thanks all for the good work done and for the attendance, a
result in line with a 10th anniversary.
Prizes to the winners begin with
a tie: a color picture by Fabio Cittadini puts us behind a baby on the
sand, stalking to the sea; the B&W one by Alberto Sarandrea is showing
us the front of a ‘was-baby’ almost lied on the floor. The baby is
wearing a white diaper, the ‘was-a-baby’ does not. Power of the nude,
female charm, tenderness of an exploring baby. Men, mothers and others
expressed their taste in the same amount. Raffaele Guzzi wins the
extempore photo contest, a Kata pouch offered by Bogen Imaging.
Well deserved award plates go to
Renato Franchini and Lorenzo De Rossi, our friends who managed to set-up
the event. Another plate goes to Silvio Simoncelli's widow, in recognition
of her late husband.
Also noticed the lifetime Pentax
user, Mr. Fantini from Sandrigo and last, but not least, president Dario
is getting the prize on behalf of our club for "big competence and
passion in supporting the diffusion of Pentax products".
The end of the exhibition is an escalation of feelings. It’s a very
intense moment all for us, all of Pentax.
Thanks to all those who attended, to
friends from Vicenza and a big special thank-you to whoever works before
and after the Pentax Day, for making it possible year after year.
Fabio at AOHC table