The Fascinating History of the Fake Leica Camera

When is a Leica not a Leica? When it’s a Soviet-made Zorki or a FED (among others). These visually and functionally resemble Leica cameras from the mid 20th century. What drove some countries to manufacture copies of screw mount cameras manufactured by Ernst Leitz GmbH? Was it just imitation, or was there more that led to the knockoffs being manufactured? We spoke to three subject matter experts for their insights into the origin of fake Leica cameras.

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Ilme Vysniauskaite: On The Intimacy of Black and White Film Photography

All images by Ilme Vysniauskaite. Used with permission.

Black and white photography is so incredibly personal to some of us, and Ilme  Vysniauskaite generally feels the same way just about film photography despite mostly shooting in black and white. You see, she grew up in a post-soviet time and was shaped by many things around her during her younger days. Ilme submitted to be featured in her analog zine, and her submission is being featured here on our website.

Surely, my words do not even begin to do hers justice.

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Malaise Explores A Sanatorium Turned WWI and WWII Military Hospital

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Urban exploring is cool, but when the locations have some serious history or creepiness to them, it’s even cooler! Malaise is a photography project done by 23 year old London based creative Christian Schmeer about Beelitz-Heilstätten. According to Forbidden Places, it was a tuberculosis sanatorium until World World I came along. During that time, it served as a German Military hospital. Then World War II happened, and it served as a Soviet hospital. Adolf Hitler was treated here. Most of the complex though was abandoned but some of it still remains active.

“The smell of disinfectant still lingers in the operating rooms, permeating through the airy corridors, a caustic whiff in sharp contrast to the gentle palettes of old paint flaking off the walls and fantastic window frames,” stated Abandoned Berlin.

In 1989, the grounds became the scene of six murders as necrophilic serial killer Wolfgang Schmidt, also known as “The Beast of Beelitz”, terrorised the area. Once considered amongst the most advanced hospitals in Europe, Beelitz-Heilstätten has been abandoned and left to dilapidate due to discrepancies over ownership.

Take a look at some other photos and his Vimeo Staff Picks video after the jump.


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