What happened to fun? Like genuine “I don’t give a sh*t! I’m having a good time!” fun. We all sense that it’s still out there somewhere, but its getting harder and harder to drop said sh*ts and go play.
Brandon Jennings remembers fun, and he’s inviting everyone else along.
In 1963 Nikon (a reasonably fun company) and Jacques-Yves Cousteau (the embodiment of fun) began the Nikonos series. It was a fully submersible 35 mm camera with interchangeable lenses and eventually (1980) an internal light meter. That series of camera became the go-to for water-based good-time photography (and some water-based bad photography too — the Nikonos was used heavily to document the Vietnam War).
Then, with the digital revolution and the introduction of housings, Jacques Cousteau’s beloved camera became a thing of the past. Until 2013, that is, when Southern California-based food-broker and photographer Brandon Jennings came along. Jennings is the founder of the Nikonos Project — in which he sends Nikonos cameras to curious adventurers, surfers, and photographers with the sole/soul request that they send the cameras back after a spell.
Brandon never coaxes anyone to submit their imagery to his website or Instagram, but many camera-borrowers do.
“They don’t have to,” he explained to Uproxx, “If they want to they do, if they don’t they don’t.”
We spoke to Brandon about the project and he shared a collection of his favorite images with us: