Photography/Expert Profile

Ask A Question


I'm an expert on all types of antique, classic, and contemporary cameras, as well as the general history of photography. Everything from ancient box cameras to modern single-lens-reflex; from simple Kodaks to sophisticated Leica and Nikon; from glass plates and roll film to movie and 35mm. I can identify and appraise them, explain how they work, and offer insights on their restoration and care. I can also provide historical background on vintage cameras and equipment, and guidelines on their purchase and sale.

Experience in the area

I've been a professional photographer and a student of the history of photography for nearly 30 years. During that time my collection of vintage cameras and photographic paraphernalia has grown beyond 2000 significant pieces. I've published nearly 70 articles in the field, including 16 in the popular "Buying Classic Cameras" series for PHOTO SHOPPER MAGAZINE from 1995 to 1997, I'm currently a contributing editor for CAMERA SHOPPER MAGAZINE and McKEOWN'S PRICE GUIDE TO ANTIQUE AND CLASSIC CAMERAS, and I've written numerous entries for WORLD BOOK ENCYCLOPEDIA. Portions of my collection have been displayed in museums and special exhibits in the past two decades, and many of the items were photographed as illustrations for books. In 1985 I founded the International Photographic Historical Organization (InPHO), which eventually evolved into its intended purpose as the best first resource for information on the history of photography. I'm also a founding member of several e-mail forums dedicated to specialized areas of photography, and I'm the moderator of the Internet Directory of Camera Collectors (IDCC), which remains the largest and most successful such group in the world. For more information about the International Photographic Historical Organization and its many services, please visit its web pages at:

Average Ratings

Recent Reviews from Users

Read More Comments

    K = Knowledgeability    C = Clarity of Response    P = Politeness
Jay Buettner03/31/16101010Thank You! I won't change them!
Barbara06/25/14101010Not only did I received a rapid .....
Heather12/31/13101010Thank you so much!
Dalibor10/08/13101010I am very grateful to you, for .....
Kathleen Glielmi08/01/13101010Thank you for your answer & quick .....

Recent Answers from David Silver

2016-03-31 Warped Stereoview Cards:

Hello Jay,    No-o-o-o-o!!! If the cards are curved top to bottom, that's not "warp", that's what the manufacturer intended! In the better quality true photographic stereo cards produced by Keystone, Underwood

2014-06-25 1910's- 1920's German camera makers - Wolfgang Suchitsky:

 Hello Barbara,    Wow, Wolfgang Suchitsky, that must have been amazing!    There is no camera company named Freichlander. I'm reasonably certain the brand of camera Suchitsky was recalling was Voigtlander

2013-12-29 Wishing to know the artist:

Hello Heather,    This is a VERY famous photograph. This is "Dali Atomicus", an action portrait of the very famous Spanish surrealist artist Salvador Dali (1904-1989), taken by the equally famous American

2013-10-05 Leica:

Hello,    You have a Leica IIIa (also marketed as the Leica Model G), a traditional 35mm coupled rangefinder camera, made in 1937 by Leitz of Germany. This is a fairly common model, with over 90,000 produced

2013-07-30 Value of a Leica IIIg 35mm rangefinder camera:

   Hello Kathleen,    The Leica IIIg was the last and arguably the best of the 35mm coupled rangefinder cameras produced by Leitz of Germany for screw mount lenses.  There's no lack of them out there


Ask A Question


All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


©2017 All rights reserved.