So far, the most challenging aspect of shooting the Monochrome is not the B&W or the exposure, but instead learning to focus, especially in low light Focus in the dark and focus on small objects like eyes, is currently my biggest challenge. This shot, in a dimly lit restaurant has tons of shadow area with good detail that I was able to lighten up, making it a usable image
My first chance to play with the Monochrome and people. Definitely a serious learning curve relative to focus. With that said, the results, to me, are simply outstanding strait out of the camera. These have a slight curve adjustment, a vignette, and not much else. The picture of the deep black cat against the white walls is particularly impressive.
We went out on the town last night, visiting one of my favorite cities in Maine and a few of my favorite establishments. Like any first date, I was nervous as all get out, but you could tell she was calm as steel. As we got to know each other, it was sort of a dance, one that I am sure will continue for the forseeable future. Like any new relationship, it is all about balance, discovering each others likes and dislikes, learning about each others strengths and weaknesses, and all that sort of stuff.
For instance, on our first date, I learned that she likes to take things slow, definitely no rushing this girl. She also seems to really not care for bright lights too much, something that I will have to be very conscious of as we get to know one another. Oh, did I mention she is slow, not in a bad way, but in an old school sort of way. She likes to just take her time, looking pretty, in no rush. I can tell that I will need to bring the same mentality to our relationship.
We ate dinner, talked, had some wine and then took a walk through town. She is one of those types that needs to eat constantly, so it is a good thing I brought an extra snack because she quickly bonked, her energy was just zapped, even though we had a decent dinner, not a full one, but decent. I guess I will just have to keep an eye out on those sorts of things and continue to carry extra energy sources at all times.
I love the way she looks and dresses, all black, very simple, nothing too loud. She is definitely a quiet one, not looking to draw attention to how she behaves or what she has to say. Looking back over the evening, it was clear that she has great potential. Potential in the way that keeps me both nervous and excited. She is clearly the type of gal that will push me to my limits, help me grow as an individual, and constantly remind me to slow down and just take my time.
Yep, I am excited, I think this is really going to work.
I wrote the other day that making this switch and waiting for its arrival was akin to being back in High School when you asked out that beautiful girl in your class, over and over again, until finally she says yes. Will she be everything you dreamed she would be, or will it be a bust... Well, that is about how I feel right now as the switch to Leica from my beloved Nikon gear is now complete. I have sold off everything, all my Zeiss lenses, my Nikon D800E (sitting in the background waiting to be shipped) and any other of the myriad of small bits and bobs I had laying around of value.
Today, she arrived, all dressed in black, devoid of any tell tale markings, especially that bright red dot. The ultimate in stealth, shooting only shades of gray, I take my last color picture for a while as I begin the journey of shooting solely in gray scale and with the simplicity and elegance of an all manual rangefinder camera. To say I am excited is an understatement.
Road trip begins in a few hours and the batteries are charging and I am ready to go. The first 7 days will give me a chance to shoot people, landscapes, the coastal regions and some city scapes. All in all it will be a great introduction to life with the Leica Monochrome.
Sometimes we find inspiration in the strangest of places, but almost always, when we need it. As I begin this transition, back to B&W, and away from Nikon towards Leica, I stumbled upon this video which is so inspiring on many fronts. Take 10 minutes out of your life to watch it and tell me what, if anything from it inspires you.
The holidays are approaching and I have my own little 'Post Black Friday' sale taking place. Still on the block are two of my favorite pieces of Zeiss Glass. If you are looking for beautiful lenses at an amazing savings off of retail, then look no further:
- Zeiss 2/100 ZF.2 - Body 8, Lens 9 $1400 OBO SOLD
- Zeiss 2/50 ZF.2 - Body 9, Lens 9+ $1000
Email for pics and more details.
An amazing ride this thing we call life. Reflecting today, as many of us do, I am incredibly grateful for the path of life, all that has come, all that is, and all that is yet to be discovered.