In a way, a Leica was my first camera. I borrowed my father’s which had a lens that would pop out of the camera and his light meter. I’d get a light reading, choose the settings and shoot. I loved it in weird ways that only geeks understand.
Leica has ruled street photography & news reporting for decades. In recent years, they have lost ground to cameras with longer lenses and more bells and whistles, but none of those cameras take better pictures.
As I find myself wanting to go back to my beginnings to find ways to take better pictures now. My Olympus was aperture priority, manual focus and 1 focal length. My darkroom was black & white. I am returning to a simpler camera so that I can renew my emphasis on structuring images without the distraction of color.
So I rented a Leica Q2 Monochrom for a weekend and shot the scene in downtown Macon on a First Friday which is always a great draw.
If you’ll pardon the geek-speak for a moment, this camera has a 47mp, full size sensor to give an excellent dynamic range. It is mirrorless, so unencumbered by the prism & mirror of and SLR. And it has just a 28mm f/1.7 lens – although made with excellent precision by Leica. Although you may think that the biggest nod to simplicity is the lens, but the light sensor has had any and all hardware required to determine colors left off it. It can only shoot in black & white.
Unlike the Leica M series, which are rangefinder cameras, the Q adopts the latest & greatest electronic viewfinder (EVF). I am willing to bend to this latest technology because it enhances simplicity – what you see in the viewfinder is what your going to get for an image – or closer to it than looking through an SLR or rangefinder. Going back to simpler ways does not mean you have to embrace harder ways to do things. If there is a simpler way to do things – and you are embracing simplicity – let technology do that for you. The M series allows you to use different lenses, but the Q2 enforces the simplicity of a single lens.
Well, that’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it.
But enough jabber, here’s the result.