Review: Bashert Jewelry Leica Shutter Release Buttons

Fujifilm and Leica camera owners may really appreciate the Bashert Jewelry Leica Shutter Release buttons.

Though they may seem like just jewelry, the Bashert Jewelry Leica Shutter Release buttons have a fair amount of functionality to them as well as customization. You should know first and foremost that they’re made of Sterling Silver. That may sound a bit too bourgeois for some folks, but if you’re into customizations and a bit of the tactile experience, then you’ll understand how these can be really nice. For the uninitiated, soft shutter release buttons make the experience of pushing your camera shutter easier with less effort but without making them more sensitive. That doesn’t sound like such a big task until you actually experience it in person. I’d liken the experience to using an actual keyboard vs the one that you’ve got on the touchscreen device that many of you are using to read this blog post. There surely is a difference. I’d hate to write a long, essay format email on my iPhone 8 Plus but on my iMac’s Keyboard that would be significantly simpler to do. Synonymously, hammering a camera shutter over and over again can put some wear and tear on your fingers and hands in combination with typing on your phone, typing on a computer, etc.

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More Vintage Revivals, Leica Announces New Thambar-M 90mm F2.2

The Leica Thambar-M 90mm F2.2 may make you fall in love with vintage optics all over again

Can any vintage or ‘legendary’ camera brands, products, or services of the past who are interested in being revived for modern photographers please raise their hands? We need to get a head count because it seems 2017 is the year of the revival in the photography world and that trend continues here today with Leica’s announcement of their ‘new’ Thambar-M 90mm F2.2. Continue reading…

I Find Fashion Photography So Boring; But Not Street Photography

For work I shoot commercial and fashion photography and really, it is so fucking boring. So in my own time I just love to photograph humanity. I want to turn the mundane into something beautiful. I think this helps me cope with life, making the ordinary extraordinary. I have a Leica Q and like to take my camera out when I walk my dog every day. At school I wanted to paint photos realistically but I was crap, so I figured I could just take photos instead. I really enjoyed it and got a rush from the results and I just never stopped.

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Report Claims Zenit’s Upcoming D1 Full Frame Mirrorless To Be Repackaged Leica M9

We have previously reported on Russian camera maker Zenit and their return to the market, as well as their rumored mirrorless camera projects. The company made waves when it was revealed that they were working on a full frame mirrorless system, raising eyebrows because to this point Sony remains the only player in that game besides Leica. Well, now we are getting new reports that this upcoming Zenit D1 mirrorless camera could be nothing more than the repackaged and repurposed guts of a Leica M9. A move that would be very interesting considering the history of other attempted rebrands.

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This SUPER FREAKIN’ COOL Leica CL Dealer Poster is For Auction at the Tamarkin Rare Camera Auction in November

Screenshot taken from the Tamarkin Rare Camera Auction catalog

The Leica CL is arguably one of the most popular Leica cameras due to its affordability, so the film geeks in the audience are going to truly appreciate this Leica CL Dealer Poster available at the Tamarkin Rare Camera Auction coming this November. The auction is famous for finding and selling some of the coolest stuff to the highest bidders. I’ve seen some extremely rare Leica pieces auctioned off there and in November this year, they’re auctioning off this and a few other really cool pieces from Zeiss, Leitz, and so much more.

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5 Compact Film Cameras Used by Professional Photographers Today

Compact film cameras are a great thing for any photographer to be able to throw in their bag. More often than not, they’re more durable than digital cameras and they use good old film–which is bound to give you great results you cannot get with digital if you’re doing it right. Believe it or not, there are professional photographers who today still use some film cameras in order to get a different look from what everyone else is doing out there. The results are often fantastic and even the likes of VICE have done projects where they’ve given disposable cameras to photographers for special situations. Indeed, these cameras are still very good and if a professional photographer can create great results with them, there is no reason why you can’t.

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Fotodiox Pro’s New PRONTO Adapter Gives Your Vintage Lenses AF on Sony Mirrorless

Feature Image Screengrab from Video. Credit to Fotodiox Pro

It is no secret that one of the best advantages of mirrorless over traditional DSLR systems is the ease of adapting various lenses to your camera. You can use really old vintages lenses for a unique look and feel with ease, but the one thing you always give up when you use these old lenses is Auto Focus – but Fotodiox Pro doesn’t want that to be the case anymore (at least on Sony mirrorless) thanks to their new PRONTO lens adapter. Continue reading…

The Leica H: A Little Leica Camera That Never Got Made

All images “Photo (c) Lars Netopil Classic Cameras, Wetzlar“ Used with permission.

The story of the Leica H is a rather unfortunate one that in many ways, makes me question how it would have affected the camera manufacturing industry. Imagine being so committed to a creation of yours: treating it almost like a special part of you only to know that while the idea is pretty fantastic, it just won’t make it into the world because of problems that are completely out of your control. You’d be destroyed–and that’s exactly how Adam Wagner felt when he learned that Leica would essentially be crushing his dreams. Many photographers and resellers can speak with great detail about the history of the R series, the M series and even the company’s other cameras like their film point and shoots. But as I discovered in over two years of research, not much is really known about the Leica H.

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Emily Garthwaite: Coffee Growing from the Yayu Wildforest in Ethiopia

All images and text by Emily Garthwaite. Used with permission.

I wanted to share with you a series from Yayu Wildforest in Ethiopia that I produced in collaboration with Union Roasted coffee, Kew Gardens and the Darwin Trust. As one of the last remaining mountain forest fragments of Arabica coffee (the origin for the world’s most popular coffee), the Yayu Coffee Forest Biosphere in Ethiopia is vital for its preservation and conservation. To prevent further damage to the forest or loss of coffee species, the local communities need to have other sustainable livelihood options.

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Cheap Photo: Panasonic and Fujifilm Headline This Week’s Savings

Last week it was some Fujifilm deals (which are still active by the way) and this week it’s Panasonic savings. If you are into video there is no doubt that you have at least considered some Panasonic gear for your kit, and if you were holding out now is a great time to jump on that bandwagon thanks to some nice camera and lens deals you can take advantage of…

  • Panasonic GH4 ([amazon_textlink asin=’B00I9GYG8O’ text=’Get The Deal’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’thephobl-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’603e8ef3-7616-11e7-97bd-2f81f34efa6d’])
  • Panasonic Leica DG Summilux 15mm F1.7 ([amazon_textlink asin=’B00J8H7H48′ text=’Get The Deal’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’thephobl-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’6b4547bb-7616-11e7-a3e2-21c76d73ab87′])
  • Panasonic FZ1000 ([amazon_textlink asin=’B00KOUIBZW’ text=’Get The Deal’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’thephobl-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’74740d57-7616-11e7-842b-67f5a61eb43b’])
  • Panasonic Lumix G 42.5mm F1.7 ([amazon_textlink asin=’B00VQ2CZQ8′ text=’Get The Deal’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’thephobl-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’813c9a51-7616-11e7-98e1-69665cc05b0e’])
  • Panasonic Lumix GX8 ([amazon_textlink asin=’B011B8QW38′ text=’Get The Deal’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’thephobl-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’8a46991d-7616-11e7-9df2-6141919cea98′])

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Review: Gaffers Tape/Electrical Tape (A Photographer’s Best Friend)

There’s absolutely no doubting that gaffers tape and electrical tape have been used by photographers for years now. The tape has helped with a multitude of situations: covering up logos to make their camera more low profile, keeping a battery in a camera because the camera’s battery door fell off and you don’t have the money to replace it, adding grip to a lens or camera, building a GoBo for a light, attaching a gel to a flash, securing a flash to an unconventional spot, etc. Just look at most Leica cameras and you’ll see gaffers tape on it. Indeed, it’s true that photographers have used it over and over again for years for almost anything and everything.

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Alexander Benz: Discovering Black and White Urban Geometry in NYC

All images by Alexander Benz. Used with permission.

“Geometry plays an important role in my life.” states photographer Alexander Benz. “I see angles, corners, shapes and curves everywhere. I often use those elements to frame my subjects to create a border other than the border given by the camera.” Mr. Benz could get this unique creative vision from his engineering education. Afterwards, he moved to NYC to study at the International Center of Photography then stuck around to work for various photographers and get a bit more of a taste for the industry. It’s there in NYC where he discovered his affinity for black and white photography and Urban Geometry.

“I often roamed the city at night, always having my camera, a Leica M6 loaded with high speed 3200 ASA film, with me.” explains Mr. Benz about his photographic journey. “Wherever I went I found situations that I had an urge to record. Not necessarily as a memory, but more for the purpose of processing what was going at a later moment.” There are many photographers who do this, actually. It’s how they learn to make sense of the world.

Why is black and white photography important to you?

Black and white photography is very important to me. This kind of photography emphasises shapes and light in a very different way than colour photography. Reducing an image to shapes of grey creates a different focus on the subject and leaves some room to fill in the rest, the way we usually experience our surrounding, by using our imagination.

What inspires you to create photographs?

I have been a photographer for more than 20 years and I love the idea that I can document the world around me by using my camera. It keeps me looking around, looking up, left and right. It is so easy to forget to do that, to let our surrounding fade in to the backdrop of everyday life.

Why is black and white photography so important to our future in the art world?

To me, black and white photography is not necessarily meant to represent reality as is. Of course it can be used in documentary photography where we are reminded what is happening around us every day, but I believe that even there it is used for a different, even if subconsciously, purpose. Black and white somehow separates my work from the everyday iPhone snap shot, from the family photos, and everything else that is meant to serve as a memory of reality. To me, the lack of colours are in a sense the same as the way we remember things. Not perfect, but it leaves room for interpretation, it encourages the viewer to fill in the gaps and draw his/her own conclusions.

Reliable, Mechanical Vintage Cameras You’ll Want to Shoot With

Compact film cameras are a big thing more so now than they have ever been before. But one of the biggest problems with lots of them has to do with the fact that the electronics in them break down after a really long time. In a case like that, it’s sometimes just best to use an all mechanical camera with much better reliability.

So with that said, here are a number of (mostly) mechanical cameras that you’ll surely want to get your hands on.

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The New Leica M Monochrom Limited Edition Jim Marshall Set Looks Like Someone Just Wore Away at the Brass

If you’re a Leica camera fan, then you’re bound to understand the mentality behind the new Leica M Monochrom Limited Edition Jim Marshall Set. Certain Leicas, such as the Leica M6, had black paint on them. And as time went on, the paint wore away as the camera got more and more use. This was and always has been a badge of honor for various photographers as it means that they’ve been shooting with their Leica for a really long time. So with the new Leica M Monochrom Limited Edition Jim Marshall Set, the paint seems to be inspired by this little fact of a Leica photographers’ life.

Oh yeah, and it’s an ode to the great music photographer, of course.

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Review: Zeiss 28mm f2.8 ZM (Leica M Mount)

If you were to consider one lens for street photography and urban geometry, then there isn’t a fantastic reason why the Zeiss 28mm f2.8 ZM lens shouldn’t be on your list. The lens is designed for the Leica M mount, which means that it has a whole lot of versatility when it comes to mounting it to something else. So for the Sony a7 series shooter, it’s a nice addition. But it’s also nice to be in the bag of a Leica M shooter or in my case, with the Leica CL. Zeiss has always made some really stellar lenses, but when you also make them this compact, it’s easy to fall in love with their glass all over again.

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Four Cameras Capable of Making Pleasing, Big Prints at Higher ISOs

One of the problems with digital photography for years has been high ISO output. While it’s become much better when you look at the photos on a screen, it’s still not perfect when it comes to printing. With film, you can tell that you’re looking at film grain when you enlarge and print a photo at something like 17×22 paper. But with digital, you’re bound to find digital looking noise; and it’s very apparent in the color noise, etc. But in the past few years, a few cameras have come around that produce fantastic results at higher ISOs. Here are some of our favorites.

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Why Small Film Cameras Are The Ultimate Every Day Camera

This addiction of mine began a few years ago and continues into today; it helped spur a movement. Remember a few years ago how Fujifilm came onto the scene with cameras that had retro aesthetics, looked gorgeous and actually functioned well while doing it nowhere as expensive as Leica? Then Olympus hopped on board. Then Sony, and the train kept taking off. It got its fundamental start with film cameras and that whole movement. The idea of using a proper dial of some sort and retro-grade ergonomics has continued to enamor photographers everywhere–but no matter what camera manufacturers have done, I think that I can make a very valid argument that they’ve all come very close and done a fantastic job. However nothing fits into your hand or functions just right like some sort of small film camera.

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Lens Review: Leica Summaron-M 28mm F5.6 (Leica M Mount)

The Leica Summaron-M 28mm F5.6 is a lens that in many ways is bound to garner the love of many street photographers out there. One could easily think to themselves: why would someone go crazy over a small, slow prime lens? There are a lot of reasons beyond its more affordable price point. There’s the image quality–which is unlike anything I’ve seen from most modern lenses. Then there are things like the low profile and the fact that the fairly slow speed means that’s all you’re going to be using for street photography anyway. It’s a gorgeous lens if you’re into something smaller and a lot more classic–not only in the quality but also the operation.

And seriously, I have to hand it to Leica. The Leica Summaron-M 28mm f5.6 is designed more for the look: not to appease some DXO overlord.

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Creating the Photograph: Tomasz Kedzierski’s “Tribute to Krzysztof Kieślowski”

Creating the Photograph is an original series where photographers teach you about how they concepted an image, shot it, and edited it. The series has a heavy emphasis on teaching readers how to light. Want to be featured? Email chrisgampat[at]thephoblographer[dot]com.

Photographer Tomasz Kędzierski has been a pretty fantastic and creative analog film photographer for a while. We’ve featured his work a number of times on this website. Besides the Square Lips project, his homemade pinholes and his solarigraphy, he’s done some higher end work too. Most recently, he was working on a shoot where he was shooting with Provia 100, and to ensure that he got the shot right, he used a Leica Sofort first before switching back to his Hasselblad 501C.

Here’s his story.

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Fábio Picarelli: Learning with an Olympus OM-1 and Kodak Tri-X

All images by Fábio Picarelli. Used with permission. 

What makes black and white photography so important to you?

Black and white is unique, when you take out the colors you focus on the basics of what you’re shooting, what’s happening, the people or the place that are in frame. The aesthetics of it is of photography itself, how it begins and how it can always be.

What inspires you to create photographs?

The chance to capture something unique, a moment frozen in time, a moment that will live for ever. It combines a bunch of discipline, art, sociology, politics, anthropology and more.

Why is black and white photography so important to our future in the art world?

Black and white has a history on the world of photography and art. When you think of your favorites photos, most of them are black and white. They are photos that survived the test of time, that are truly art, universal that we can respond to it. Black and white, and film, as parts of our history has this historical context.

Tell us about your images and why you love Kodak Tri-X

Kodak Tri-X is the most famous film of all time, it has a look in it that is easily recognizable. Lots of great shots were shot on Tri-X. I learned to photograph with a Olympus OM-1 and Kodak Tri-X and although I use a lot of different films I always return to it for its quality and its look.

This shoots I shot on the last two years, with a Leica R3 and the Olympus OM-1, in the city that I live, São Paulo, Brazil and one trip to Cuba. All street photography.

Be sure to follow Fábio Picarelli on Instagram too: @picarellifabio

Bashert Jewelry Gives Your Leica a Sterling Silver Soft Shutter Button

Soft shutter releases have been around for a really long time now, but the Bashert Jewelry Sterling Silver Soft Shutter Release Buttons for the Leica M series of cameras are surely taking the cake. For the uninitiated, soft shutter button releases are a very nice and extremely addicting addition for your camera. They often make pressing the shutter a bit better ergonomically speaking. This is fantastic for a series like the Leica M where you need to sometimes stretch your finger a bit to press the shutter if you’ve got smaller hands.

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