Photographer’s 3 Yr Mission to Recuperate His Grandpa’s Movie Digicam

Benjamin Dome didn’t have a lot hope he would ever see his grandfather’s movie digicam once more after it was stolen in Ethiopia three years in the past.

The Nikon F-E disappeared after a bus driver sped off with it whereas Dome was visiting the nation to {photograph} the Mursi tribe.


“I went on the market simply earlier than the pandemic, about three years in the past,” the London-based photographer tells PetaPixel.

“I used to be on a visit and we instructed the driving force to cease whereas we went and obtained some meals earlier than going again to the lodge.”

However as Dome and his fellow vacationers stepped out of the van it sped off along with his grandfather’s digicam inside.

This sparked a panic to seek out the driving force late at night time, whereas there was a curfew in place.

“We discovered some military and defined what occurred they usually began banging on the gates of the lodge,” explains Dome.

When the group obtained into the lodge they discovered the driving force who “mentioned he knew nothing,” and once they checked the van, it was empty.

“They put the driving force in a police car to attempt to search for different stuff, they went to a bar and interrogated a person with their truncheons,” says Dome.

The police promised Dome that they’d discover his grandfather’s digicam, however he left Ethiopia empty-handed.

“It had my roll of movie I used to be capturing on contained in the digicam. I used to be gutted I’d misplaced the images and gutted I’d misplaced my grandad’s digicam.”


All Appeared Misplaced

Dome has been visiting the Mursi individuals within the Horn of Africa with anthropologist Dr. David Turton for 20 years.

“I went again to London, however I instructed my buddy within the native village to maintain an eye fixed out for it and verify in with the police on occasion,” Dome says.

Time handed and his grandfather’s digicam that held sentimental worth appeared misplaced, however Dome by no means gave up hope.

“About eight months in the past, I reminded my buddy to look. He despatched me a hyperlink on Fb of a man posing with it and mentioned ‘Is that this your digicam?’”

After Dome’s buddy went and retrieved the digicam, they cross-referenced the serial numbers and certain sufficient, it was the stolen Nikon.

Dome’s buddy with the digicam after he had retrieved it.

In March 2022, three years after Dome misplaced the digicam, he traveled again to East Africa the place he obtained his arms on the misplaced instrument.

“It learn 36 frames on the roll, so nobody’s opened it which means my movie remains to be inside,” he says.

“The winder was damaged off the highest and the movie was damaged off the canister. However my uncovered movie was positively inside.”

Broken winder
Damaged winder.

Dome struggled to open the digicam however managed to pry the movie out and get it right into a secure pot. However, that wasn’t the tip of his struggles.

“I lastly obtained it open with the movie, however I didn’t keep in mind how I uncovered the movie,” he says.

“I do know good follow says I ought to write it on the canister earlier than taking photos, however on the go, it’s not at all times attainable. And I by no means anticipated to have the digicam stolen.”

After a lot soul-searching Dome determined to get the movie developed as ISO 200.

“I assumed it might be a great center floor to work from, assuming the movie hadn’t been uncovered within the two years or so it was out of my possession,” says Dome.



After a nail-biting wait, the movie got here again with stunning black-and-white photos of Ethiopians on it.

For sure, Dome was thrilled to not solely retrieve the images he had traveled to this point to seize but additionally, to have his grandfather’s digicam again in his possession.

“I’m hoping to have an exhibition subsequent 12 months with extra pics from the ‘stolen roll’ and 20 years of visiting the Mursi,” he provides.

“I’ll be posting a video of the entire journey to retrieve the digicam on my new YouTube vlog too.”

Nikon F-E

For the upcoming video and to see extra of Dome’s work, go to his YouTube, web site, and Instagram.

We will be happy to hear your thoughts

Leave a reply

Affordable Deals USA

we aggregate the best deals for you from Amazon to ensure you have the best selection and lowest prices. Once you chose your desired selection you will be redirected to buy directly from their websites

Enable registration in settings - general
Compare items
  • Total (0)
Shopping cart