Photographic Page


This page is part photo resource, and partly information for those of you who want to find out more about what sort of cameras I've been using. I've just started using a 1969 Nikon FTn; and for Christmas '99, a Rolleicord TLR along with my two Leicas, and thus far it's been a slightly intimidating experience entering the territory of the SLR and TLR. The shooting experiences are totally different for me; and I'm also finding out very quickly that I'm doing very different types of photography with the two types of camera. Using the Nikon, I almost feel like I'm entering some kind of impersonal space when using it, whereas the M3, Leica III and the Rolleicord feel more like extensions. I know some of this psychology can be attributed to familiarity with the Leica's, but the Rolleicord? The psychology of using the Nikon is me being aware of the mechanics of the tool I'm using. That's fine too. The Rollei is a whole new experience for me. Over the last week I've grown to love using it almost as much as the Leica's. I like the simplicity of the design, and the craftsmanship is inspiring. I never would have guessed it, but I guess I'm a square frame kind of guy.

A few years ago I used to own a Minolta Dynax, which was a great camera, but I found it to be too simplistic in its execution and wanted to learn more about "Photography" than "pointing and shooting". No disrespect to those who do and like that approach, but it wasn't for me. Then the Leica bug bit me a couple of years ago. And it bit hard. I started off buying a 50mm/SBOOI Viewfinder and spent a lot of time picking it up and looking through it, because I couldn't afford to buy anything else. Isn't imagination a wonderful thing! I then spent 2 months paying for an Elmar 90mm F4 lens. Originally black, the glass was clear and it had a LOT of brassing. I loved it. Within another 4 months I had my Leica III body. I then gifted the Dynax to Jules and haven't looked back. None of this, I might add, would have been possible if it had not been for the support of the guys at my local camera store. Enormous debt of gratitude!

Things started running awry around this time and I ended up getting my goofy M3 and DR-Summicron. The goofy M3 is either a rare collectible or a Frankenstein build of an M2 and 3. I talked with Leica and sent them pictures, but they lost them, so back to the drawing board. I then moved into the nightmare world of the Visoflex. The Visoflex is an ingenious system Leica introduced which turns your rangefinder into an SLR by a system of adapters, lens heads and a mirror housing. If you find it difficult using longer focal length lenses on your M, then I recommend it. It made my 135/4.5 Hektor more usable in almost every way. Why a nightmare using the Visoflex? Finding the right parts! Well not so much finding them, though that was difficult. The true difficulty is in identifying them! Some of the places I bought adapters from would list them by their name, for example an OUFRO, while others would list them by their number. Well that's great, but when you're told you need a 16469 it doesn't particularly help. In fact you're left quaking in your seat wondering why you wanted to do this in the first place. So...i've set up a Visoflex page so that the whole approach can be made a little easier for those of you who want to do this, and hopefully you won't replicate my experience. If you have already...I probably have your empathy, and you mine.