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Izumi's Diary Page 52      Tuesday 22 May 2012  
         
         
Leica Lioness
 
         
     
 

Hello, here is Izumi again!

The time before last time I said I was going to tell you of a decision I had made, so here it is.

I have indulged myself and been a bit of a lens otaku (again, you say?) and bought myself a 25mm Leica Summilux lens that is made by Panasonic for my PEN. I can justify myself (if I really need to) with several reasons. One is that it's winter and the light is a lot less now so I need a fast lens for my stalking (I know the 20mm is f/1.7 but the 25mm is f/1.4 so it's a bit longer and a bit faster which can be useful for me). Secondly it's the photographic equivalent of a nice warming bowl of winter stew (I wonder if M Cartier-Bresson also enjoyed a nice cassoulet and glass of red after a wintry day of treading the trottoirs of Paris?) and thirdly it is a bit of a present to myself for selling several prints at my recent exhibition at Artpresso.

And fourthly, speaking of M Cartier-Bresson, it enables me to feel closer to him by viewing and shooting through a lens with Leica written on it.

But enough of reading, it's time for some looking.

First though, I must show you how smart PEN looks wearing the Leica lens.

 
     
     
         
         
 
         
  It is a nice feeling to look at PEN front-on and see Leica and Summilux written on his lens. Somehow it makes me think that the spirit of M Cartier-Bresson may be near my shoulder as I am seeking my Decisive Moments.  
         
         
         
 
 
 
Early Lane
 
 
Olympus E-PL1 w 25mm, 1/25 sec, f/1.4, 3200 ISO, 50mm (eqiv)
 
         
         
  This above photograph is one of the very first I took with the Leica lens. It was well before dawn and PEN had to go to 3200 ISO with the lens wide open so I did not have to use Man Friday. As it was I rested the camera on the roof of a car that was handily parked. Photoshop removed most of the noise that was there.  
         
         
         
 
 
 
First Light
 
 
Olympus E-PL1 w 25mm, 1/60 sec, f/1.4, 320 ISO, 50mm (eqiv)
 
         
         
         
   
   
Figure in a Streetscape
   
Olympus E-PL1 w 25mm, 1/60 sec, f/1.4, 800 ISO, 50mm (eqiv)
         
         
         
 
 
 
Taxi!
 
 
Olympus E-PL1 w 25mm, 1/640 sec, f/4, 400 ISO, 50mm (eqiv)
 
         
         
         
   
Early Sun
   
Olympus E-PL1 w 25mm, 1/320 sec, f/2.8, 400 ISO, 50mm (eqiv)
   
         
         
         
 
 
 
First Sun
 
 
Olympus E-PL1 w 25mm, 1/640 sec, f/4, 400 ISO, 50mm (eqiv)
 
         
         
         
 
 
 
Newtown Station
 
 
Olympus E-PL1 w 25mm, 1/60 sec, f/1.4, 250 ISO, 50mm (eqiv)
 
         
         
     
 

As I have mentioned recently, it is the middle of winter so my morning walks begin before the sun has risen for the day. Therefore my photographs with the Leica lens must begin likewise. You will have noticed that it can open to f/1.4 which is very handy in these circumstances. Sometimes I feel it is more wide open than my eyes are.

 
     
     
         
 
 
 
Ghost Riders
 
 
Olympus E-PL1 w 25mm, 1/60 sec, f/1.4, 1600 ISO, 50mm (eqiv)
 
         
         
         
 
 
 
Crow and Moon
 
 
Olympus E-PL1 w 25mm, 1/200 sec, f/1.4, 200 ISO, 50mm (eqiv)
 
         
         
         
 
 
 
Three Wise Sheep
 
 
Olympus E-PL1 w 25mm, 1/60 sec, f/1.4, 1600 ISO, 50mm (eqiv)
 
         
         
     
 

It is talked about that there is something special about Leica lenses and what they can do to photographs so I wonder if there is anything to be seen here.

Now it may be that my reading about the "Leica look" has gone into my brain and that is affecting my eyes, but there does seem to be a certain glow and sharpness to these photographs.

And when I open up some of these photographs in Camera Raw to adjust them I find that there is virtually no change that I want to make before I save them as .tifs to do the final adjustments in Photoshop before they arrive at these pages.

Or is it just the particular lighting and exposure of those photographs agreed so much with the lens and my PEN's sensor? More testing and walking will tell, I think.

 
     
     
         
   
Mercury Man
   
Olympus E-PL1 w 25mm, 1/125 sec, f/1.8, 200 ISO, 50mm (eqiv)
   
         
         
         
 
 
 
Sheherazade
 
 
Olympus E-PL1 w 25mm, 1/80 sec, f/1.4, 400 ISO, 50mm (eqiv)
 
         
         
         
 
 
 
Bargain Bodies
 
 
Olympus E-PL1 w 25mm, 1/30 sec, f/1.4, 200 ISO, 50mm (eqiv)
 
         
         
         
     
 

I will tell you that I am very pleased to have the lens on my PEN and I am thinking of other places that I can use it, not just pre-dawn darkened streets.

You will see here what I decided upon.

The only slight little niggle is that even though it is a Leica lens there is no place on it to put the red dot.

Now I say an early morning goodbye,

Izumi.

 
     
     
 
 
 
 
To fully understand my footsteps, please read me from the start.
 
Izumi's Diary Page 52
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