Rebuilding a Legacy: Central Camera Company
Indirect Travel Fun
- How much is it this time???
- Early Morning National Express, Mid Moring Terminal 3
- Elegantly Lounging around Terminal 3 (Cathay Pacific and American Airlines Lounges)
- American Airlines AA99 London Heathrow to Chicago (Main Cabin Extra)
- Into the USA, Crowne Plaza O’Hare
- Hyatt Regency O’Hare
- Airplane Art Extra: From the Hyatt Regency O’Hare
- Chicago Classics: Mannys Deli and Cafeteria
- Bench Test and First Impressions: Canon EOS R50
- Rebuilding a Legacy: Central Camera, Chicago
- Chicago Classics: Peaquod’s Pizza
- Back to O’Hare, Swissport Lounge Chicago T5
- Finnair AY10 Chicago O’Hare to Helsinki Vantaa
- A quick ground-side visit, and an even quicker stop at the Finnair Lounge
- Finnair AY1337 to Helsinki Vantaa to London Heathrow
- The Unexpected Coach Home
- Expect the Unexpected
One of the things I loved to do pre-pandemic was to visit a certain camera shop in Chicago- the Central Camera Company on Wabash, just on the edge of The Loop. You can spot it a mile off with its classic neon sign from the L when passing Adams/Wabash, or from the ground if you’re coming in from Jackson Station.
It’s on the corner of The Loop, near the corner of Jackson and Wabash. The shop has not had a good run of it recently, with it suffering an arson attack during the George Floyd Protests, burning a lot of the old premises.
Since then, the shop has been rebuilding slowly, opening at limited hours and days during the week.
In the past few trips when I’ve been to Chicago, it has been shut on the days or times I wanted to visit or I’ve missed it when not hitting town at a certain time of day – but this trip – it was open between 10:00 and 15:00 – so I paid a visit to see what the state things were in
Whilst they have managed to clean the premises up, it’s a lot brighter than it was before, in whitewash.
And I was recognised the moment I went through the front door, with some familiar faces in “familiar” locations.
Central Camera focuses a lot on Film photography – as well as serving the digital community. Put it like this: if I was hunting for a Lecia film body and lens (and one day, I’ll drop the money on that to hone my craft), I would do it here. They also have an impressive second-hand stock list.
It’s not just the range of equipment (and I’ve had lenses from here before), it’s the knowledge that exists in this shop – something I feared had been lost.
That knowledge is in full show and working strongly. That is so heartwarming to see – well as the options for any photographer.
I was tempted by more than a few things – however, my wallet was in control. That’s good because it’s shops like this I can find annoying, but important adaptors, mounts and all the things you need to do photography beyond a camera, memory card and a flashlight.
And there’s the veritable treasure-trove of filters, adaptors, caps, the list goes on, as well as film and development services
Support your local camera shops
I know photographers are happy to use big chains or go to Amazon to get stuff (I’m as guilty as anyone) – the convenience outweighs the life of a small business for some.
But it is these small stores where you can find things that you will struggle to find – be it the oddest adaptor, or the support for a film camera that’s long out of production. Its in these sorts of shops that sometimes photographers lean into when sourcing equipment, going idea fishing or looking for something a little different – rather than heading to a big box store and playing “hunt the disinterested employee”.
And It goes to the point for all photographers – support your local camera shop when you can.
Because, you’d never get a level of quality of service, combined with the knowledge out of Jeff Bezos Inc.
A new Chicago Class – Peaquods Pizza. Can lightning strike twice?
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