Anscoflex – An American Diana

Self Portrait circa 1979

In 1978 I started playing around with the old cameras I had found in a cabinet in my dorm room in college. A friend and I captured this image while walking around Fairfield, Iowa, with my old plastic Ansco Anscoflex twin lens reflex camera, the one with the large dish flash attachment that took real flash bulbs, a box of which I found in the local used junk shop. I really enjoyed that simple camera, but alas, they don’t manufacture film for it anymore – it took 620 roll film. This is how the image (two similar photographs, actually) appears in my picture album from that era.

I am reminded of the Russian-made Holga or the Japanese-made Diana, both of them plastic, 120 format cult cameras. I just saw a new version of the Diana for sale in Urban Outfitters. The Ansco Anscoflex was my answer to the Diana.