photography and photographs understood

Personal Activities

These are notices and updates related to my photography activities.

Bought a Leica Q

I bought a Leica Q compact camera. It has what I want: manual controls for exposure; the ability to deactivate the LCD screen, a full-frame image sensor, and a top of the line Leica 28mm lens. What else do I need?
posted: sep 26, 2018; words: 984; past month: 1266 views

One Camera, One Lens

More than one camera and more than one lens is too much; it’s a distraction. Taking pictures is smoother when you have only one camera and one lens. Shooting becomes simpler and more natural, making for better photos.
posted: aug 27, 2018; words: 986; past month: 2130 views

A Superb Compact Camera: FujiFilm X100F

Although I have enjoyed owning a Sony RX100-III camera, with its pocket size and excellent Zeiss lens, I’m ready to spend a little more to get a compact camera with a larger sensor. I’ve decided to sell the Sony and buy a FujiFilm X100F.
posted: oct 12, 2017; words: 1393; past month: 828 views

Replaced Leica M9 Image Sensor

My Leica M9 had too many spots on images, so I gave it to Leica to clean. They said the image sensor needed replacing.
posted: feb 10, 2017; words: 735; past month: 3017 views

Lightroom Mobile as a Camera App.

Discovered an excelent mobile phone camera application that I already had and didn't know it.
posted: feb 08, 2017; words: 538; past month: 1298 views

A Pocket Camera: Sony RX100-M3

Tired of missing shots, I bought a small camera that I'm more likely to take with me. The Sony RX100 M3 is a nice camera with an excellent image sensor and lens.
posted: apr 24, 2016; words: 634; past month: 1012 views

Repair Bill from Leica

The repair estimate for my Leica M3 film camera arrived today. I knew it would be high, but it’s much higher than I expected. They do good work and I like this camera very much, but I'm wondering if it’s worth having it repaired.
posted: may 27, 2015; words: 531; past month: 2249 views

Price Set for Leica M3

After much research and consulting with others, as well as some testing, I’ve agreed on a more than fair price for a Leica M3 camera. But then my friend changed her mind and gave me a much better price.
posted: may 10, 2015; words: 701; past month: 1075 views

Problems with a Leica M3 Camera

I’m about to purchase a Leica M3 from a friend. To determine its value, though, I decided to test it first. It looks excellent on the outside, but the inner workings of the camera seem to have some problems.
posted: may 05, 2015; words: 373; past month: 1664 views

Replacing a Zeiss Ikon with a Leica M3

Although I already have an excellent rangefinder film camera, the lure of classic Leica cameras is great: I want a Leica M3. In this post, I compare the features of the Zeiss Ikon and the Leica M3 and describe my impressions and concerns.
posted: may 02, 2015; words: 643; past month: 2840 views


Old Leica cameras use M-mount lenses, which are manually controlled. The lens cannot provide data to the camera. This can be a useful feature: most digital cameras will record the lens settings in each image file, which can help to improve your skills.
posted: sep 10, 2013; words: 1025; past month: 1065 views

My Madness Thus Far

In case anyone is interested in charting my madness and sadness, here’s an update on how far down the path to sell almost all of my cameras and lenses and switch to a new system.
posted: may 29, 2012; words: 723; past month: 964 views

Almost Everything Must Go

I have a crazy plan to sell almost all of my cameras and lenses and buy new ones. Looking through over 25,000 photos I took, I printed my fifty best for a small photo album. I discovered that I take better pictures with film and rangefinder cameras.
posted: may 19, 2012; words: 1072; past month: 2106 views

An Adventure in Gear Acquisition

When I started researching the two Zeiss ZM 85mm lenses—the expensive f/2 lens ($3,350) and the inexpensive f/4 lens ($875)—a few people sent me messages leading me instead to decide to buy the Leica Elmarit-M 90mm f/2.8 lens.
posted: mar 18, 2012; words: 1350; past month: 1047 views

Vertical Use of Half Case

I bought a half case for my Leitz Minolta CL (i.e., Leica CL) camera—the bottom half of the camera is wrapped leather. I bought it from a small manufacturer in China. It's a very nice, but I don't use it in the way many people do.
posted: mar 03, 2012; words: 375; past month: 1107 views

A Ball of String

Because of the earthquake in Japan, production of Zeiss lenses has stopped for quite a while. So when one Zeiss ZM 50mm lens that I’ve been wanting to buy came up for sale at B&H Photo’s site, I pounced on it.
posted: feb 02, 2012; words: 219; past month: 918 views

Update on Zoom Reduction

Since I wrote about eliminating my zoom lenses, I’ve used my Canon 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 DO IS USM zoom lens only three times. Of those photos, I’ve only used five of the photos I took with it.
posted: sep 02, 2011; words: 537; past month: 1004 views

A Dry Period

Twice a year the canals in Milan are dry because the locks are closed upstream to drain them so the city can clean them. Today, I climbed down into one of the canals and took pictures of the restaurant barges stuck in the mud.
posted: feb 27, 2011; words: 305; past month: 964 views

Tripod for Lumix GF1

I own a Lumix GF1 camera with the 20mm f/1.7 pancake kit lens. I also have one of the Voigtlander M-mount adapters, so I'm able to use my Zeiss and Leica M-mount lenses. This is a seemingly excellent combination, but many of my images are terrible.
posted: feb 12, 2011; words: 451; past month: 1089 views

Which Leica 90mm Lens

As a result of feedback from an article posted here regarding my interest in the two Zeiss 85mm lenses, I’ve instead begun looking for a Leica 90mm lens. However, I have no sense of what lenses should cost, no way to gauge them.
posted: sep 27, 2010; words: 318; past month: 897 views

Considering the Leica 90mm Lens

After posting a message about the two Zeiss ZM 85mm lenses, I received several responses. Thanks to everyone who sent me messages and suggestions.
posted: sep 24, 2010; words: 625; past month: 1750 views

The Two Zeiss 85mm ZM Lenses

I want to buy an 85mm Zeiss ZM lens for my Zeiss Ikon camera. Zeiss makes two 85mm lens models for M-mount cameras. They make the Sonnar T* f2.0 and the Tele-Tessar T* f/4 lenses. The Sonnar lens costs more than triple that of the Tele-Tessar.
posted: sep 23, 2010; words: 310; past month: 1917 views

Reducing Zoom

In my collection of Canon EF lenses, I have a Canon EF 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 DO IS USM lens. It's an excellent lens. I don't think there's any other lens in this range of zoom lenses that's better than it for Canon EOS cameras.
posted: jul 18, 2010; words: 309; past month: 1607 views

A Fool and his Film

There are quite a few factors involved to make high quality photos from film. Each has to be at its best, or at least above a certain level. I strive for the clarity that I’ve seen in the photographs of many famous photographers during my lifetime.
posted: apr 15, 2010; words: 747; past month: 998 views

Replacement Lens Samples

This post includes a photograph taken with the replacement lens discussed in the previous post.
posted: apr 07, 2010; words: 309; past month: 1132 views

Another Fifty Euros

I returned to the Leica store to get a refund for a bad lens I bought. I showed them the lens and the photos I took with it. They were willing to take it back, but, as I feared, I was talked into an upgrade.
posted: mar 30, 2010; words: 305; past month: 925 views

Center Wash Out

Yesterday, I shot a roll of film with my new antique lens. The results were absurdly disappointing. The photos are overexposed in the center. I’m not sure what caused this problem, or if there’s anything I can do to solve it.
posted: mar 29, 2010; words: 428; past month: 932 views

Espresso and Leica Stores Don't Mix

I went to an excellent camera store today, Foto Ottica Cavour in Milan. It has an amazing selection of Leica cameras and lenses. It was nice to see cameras that I’ve only seen on the internet. I wish I had had plenty of money with me.
posted: mar 28, 2010; words: 508; past month: 1122 views

Posing for Mom
Directing on the Mountain
Lake Maggiore - Stresa
New Orleans - French Quarter
On Top the World with Dad