Fast B&W

August 13, 2009

I love playing around with new film or developers. Last Saturday night I shot an event in some fairly horrid light, and whilst tempted to go to ASA3200, I decided to stick to the box rating on some Fuji Neopan 1600. I used one lens, my superb Leica Summilux 1.4/75mm, and shot mostly at f1.4. It is a tricky lens to focus, especially with my attrocious eyesight, so I have ordered the Leica 1.25x magnifier for future use.

Contestant at the annual Miss Magpie event for the Karoonda Districts Football Club.  Shot with a Leica 1.4/75mm on Fuji Neopan 1600.

Contestant at the annual Miss Magpie event for the Karoonda Districts Football Club. Shot with a Leica 1.4/75mm on Fuji Neopan 1600.

I used a gentle agitation (not my usual technique) and some Microphen developer. I souped it for 3:25 minutes with no pre-soak. The result is that I am pleasantly surprised with the contrast and fine grain.

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This One Goes To Eleven!

August 4, 2009

Here’s a little clip from the famous ‘rockumentary’, This Is Spinal Tap. It has very little to do with photography, but I love the movie, and this is one of my favourite scenes.

Leica M9 Is Coming!

August 3, 2009

I started a thread HERE on Photo.net a few months ago stating that the M9 was coming in September. I had it on good authority but I was well and truly bashed on the forum, and was told the M9 was a long way off. Well it seems inevatable now that an announcment will indeed be made on the 09/09/2009 to inform us about the new 20mp full frame Leica M9. Phase One has a listing for the M9 in their Capture One Pro v4.8.2 software release, and the French Chasseur d’Image magazine has published a September release date also. It is also rumoured to house a Canon sensor based on the one used in the 5DMkII. Price? You know what they say, “if you have to ask……..”.

I hope Leica has a great deal of success with their new M series, as well as the just announced S-sytem medium format camera. They are a tiny company compared to the likes of Canon and Nikon, and many famous brands are either no longer around, or around in name only (read Voigtlander). Hasselblad came to the brink of collapse with the advent of digital, and Leica have not had a smooth transition into digital either. There has mixed reaction to the price release of their new medium format system, but it seems to me to be well placed when compared to their competitors offerings in the same target market.

Whilst it is great to see Leica progressing into new segments, and continuing to refine the M system, my first love is film. It still offers me the best image quality for what I shoot, and to me, that is what counts the most. Waiting a couple of day for my negatives to come back from the lab, or coughing up the extra expense of buying, developing, and scanning film, is a small price to pay when the images I make will, no doubt, outlast my lifetime.

My Leica IIIa circa 1937 with a Leitz Summar 2/5cm lens

My Leica IIIa circa 1937 with a Leitz Summar 2/5cm lens

Leica Short Movie

August 3, 2009

Very slick video production about Wim Mertens and his Leica camera.