At first glance, Carhartt, the maker of classic rugged American workwear, has very little in common with the artsy Japanese photography and music company PowerShovel. But the fall/winter 2011 collaboration between the two brands, the Blackbird Fly camera, is a marriage that reminds us of a time when photography was a more demanding profession. The modern take on the classic twin-lens, 35-mm-film Rolleiflex camera, used by the likes of Andy Warhol and James Dean, has a touch of Carhartt's utilitarian style thanks to a military-green-and-black plastic casing with silver accents along with a 33-mm lens and 1/125 shutter speed. Granted, we're certain that historic war photographers like Robert Capa never used the Blackbird Fly, and we're pretty sure modern battlefield shutterbugs stick to digital hardware. Still, this sleek, nostalgic throwback recalls a more rough-and-tumble era of photography more interesting than our time of pocket-size point-and-shoot toys.
—By Tania Jachens