Twin Lens Reflex Camera

Ken Searles who took these photos of his and his wife Quadine’s apartment on Milwaukee’s East Side in 1942, used a twin-lens reflex camera using 120 film for much of his early photography. In using the camera he had to hold it at waist level and look down through the top of the camera through the viewfinder by way of a mirror that framed the view out the top lens on the front. The lens under that had the shutter mechanism for the film. The two lenses were correctred by what is called parallex correction. Popular twin-lens cameras of the day were Roleiflex, Mamiya and Yashica.

My memories for Christmas include Dad setting up lighting for a shoot. The two large round aluminum reflectors were on stands with big “fat” bulbs in them. Dad set the timer on the camera, ran over joining the rest of us, click went the shutter, with Dad ending up both taking the photos and being in the picture. Sometimes Dad used large round aluminum reflectors that clamped onto lamps or the backs of chairs for still shots. The large 150 watt bulbs got really hot.