Four Years Ago Today: The Photo That Broke My Camera


This is the last photo of a photo shoot that should have gone a little longer. But my camera broke. So many people kid about “if you take my picture it will break your camera” that I was tempted to say to her “You broke my camera!”

Of course, it wasn’t the fault of this beautiful young woman. She had just wrapped the scarf around her neck and looked toward the light. I clicked the shutter twice and there was this very disconcerting sound. It was all over. Just two frame of her and the scarf around her neck. According to the photo’s metadata it was precisely 12:20:52 pm, December 9, 2011.

The reflex mirror had come loose and was sitting inside the mirror box. The adhesive just didn’t do its job and the mirror came off its backing plate. This was a “known issue” for the Canon 5D camera body. At no charge to the owners, Canon fixed all of the cameras that had this problem, even if they were several years out of warranty. The warranty on my camera had expired 5 years earlier, but Canon fixed it with no repair charge. Thank you Canon for excellent service!

It would have been nice to take a few more frames with the scarf around her neck, but this frame worked really well, and we had the other images that we wanted. We were at the end of a productive, two day photo shoot. This photo is one of my favorites.

Photo Data: Canon 5D. Canon EF 24-105mm f/4 lens at 70mm. 1/25 sec, f/7.1, ISO 400. Diffused window light to camera left.