Remembering Gene

Discussion in 'Classic Manual Cameras' started by rick_drawbridge, Oct 26, 2019.

  1. Those of us who inhabited this Forum around five years ago will remember the regular posts from the slightly mysterious "Gene". No only did he process found films and post some of the fascinating results here, but he composed interesting and often very amusing posts featuring a great variety of old and unusual cameras. Sadly, his participation in the forum quite suddenly ceased, and many of us were left wondering what had happened to Gene.

    I can't answer the question, though I've searched various avenues in an attempt to discover his identity. His web site is still intact, though it would seem he has made no additions to it for over 5 years. He was a man of many interests, including fishing for bass on the Quabbin Reservoir near his home, and the annual reports he made on the state of the fishery ended in 2013, and the last updates to his photograph stuff are dated early 2014. Below is a link to his website, which contains many of the posts he made to CMC on the found films and cameras, and if you're in the mood for a nostalgia trip it's certainly the place to go.

    Obviously, any information relating to Gene would be welcome. At one stage I attempted to make a donation to his site but Paypal responded that the account no longer existed...

    Index 2014
  2. I remember Gene, I was a member 2004-2006, then a long break until I joined again.

    I used to very much enjoy the found films and the amusing reviews of 'everyman' classic cameras. He didn't take his photography too seriously, despite being very talented and his posts were always worth reading.

    Sitting on my shelf is a 'Fex Ultra Reflex', bought for 1€, with what I think is a roll of Kodachrome inside, sadly unexposed though. I must shoot it one day in his honour.
  3. SCL


    Like you, I searched last year for him, but found nothing recent. I loved his "found films" and pitching in to develop others' found films...often along with witty comments. Hopefully he is merely retired and not gone.
  4. He didn't use many words, but they were always right on the mark. I sensed a slight sadness in him somehow.
  5. Gene M, king of found film and photographer of the Quabbin and barns. He was one of the reasons I got into this forum, too many years ago.

    I have tried to identify Gene several times, through the Internet, but my skills are limited. His tracks stop around 2014. I miss his humor and his contributions. Visiting his site is always a treat.
  6. I enjoyed his found film posts. He is missed.
  7. A search in Google Books comes up with a book called Photography, Cinema, Memory: The Crystal Image of Time by Damian Sutton who credits Gene McSweeney as the webmaster of the “lost films” web pages found on Not sure if a link to a Google Books search will work or not, but here goes:

    Photography, Cinema, Memory
    Ricochetrider likes this.
  8. The LINK given above by Rick is a monument to his talent that still remains.

    It's worth a periodic revisit. All the long-termers here miss him (or should).
  9. Joe Lopez said:
    Brilliant, Joe. That's one place I never thought to look. A quick Google search of the name doesn't score any relevant hits, but it's definitely another piece of the jigsaw.
  10. Always enjoyed his found films posts.
  11. I guess I am a long timer because I miss his posts - they were very funny and informative.
  12. Found films can be really interesting. I've developed a few, one of which was in my grandmother's Brownie for forty years. Here a shot of me playing my violin in the woods at the family cottage.
    [​IMG]SlidesII458 by fiddlefye, on Flickr

    View attachment SlidesII458.jpg
  13. I always liked Gene's input on the forum. And I have frequently visited his website. Unfortunately I cannot find some of the stuff he had up before, like the photos taken by a GI in Italy with an Argus camera. Back in the day I sent Gene an email identifying one of the ships in the photos but I never got a response.

    There's someone on this or another photography forum using just the name Gene, I sort of assumed it was him.
  14. I think I remember a post in the last year or two. Maybe some other Gene, not Gene M. Very much missed.
  15. Wow that Found Film stuff is wild, a really great (if fuzzy) look at the past. Ancient, found films forever immortalized on The Internet.
    Thanks guys and Thanks too, to Gene.
    Fiddlefye likes this.
  16. I too have often wondered what became of him.

    Back in the day, I always looked forward to new posts from him with great excitement. Not only did I enjoy seeing what he found, but he'd add just enough commentary to keep things interesting without overdoing it.
  17. Always enjoyed Gene M's posts as well.
    There was always a wistfully sly humor to his photo captions.
  18. Well hoperfully "Remembering Gene" will be enough to pull him out of his ennui and get back to participating. His witty replies and found film posts with imagined captions were the stuff of "spitting the coffee through your nose" which I remember being a reply to one of his posts. He often jokingly referred to some posts as "crappy" cameras. Like the OP he brought very fine results from... well,.. crappy cameras. I know he swapped some lenses with Rick_D and he reviewed a "crappy" camera I sent him as I deemed it would appeal to his taste and looked forward to his sagacious review.
    I also recall him mentioning he was doing a photo project on the Quabbin Reservoir and asked for some feedback on some pics. He also had briefly addressed those of us who encouraged him to publish a series based on "found film" He said he had being approached formally with a sponsor for publication, but IIRC he decided against pursuing it.

    Yes I miss Gene_M too!!!
  19. chuck_foreman|1 said :
    Not me, Chuck, though I seem to recall him swapping lenses with one of our members. I think there were several Ricks aboard at the time...Did you have his email address?
  20. Gene did have a habit of disappearing from for quite long periods before returning. Not this long though.

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