Street Portrait

A couple of years ago I dismissed digital photography as not being ‘real’ photography. My perception of digital was all wrong, believing that the digital photography was just computer manipulation and could never replace film was a very naive perspective on my part.


Now having used the M-P for a few weeks, I’m beginning understand where I was so wrong. Few years ago I owned a crop sensor Nikon D7000 and just didn’t get on with the camera or understand the controls let alone how use the it creatively. My images back then were to say the least, were terrible, so I sold the camera and returned to film photography. While I know manipulation in the digital can be done, I learned the format doesn’t have to be or need to use such techniques to get a pleasing image. To be perfectly honest this dim witted fool would have a clue or any idea of how to manipulate a digital image anyway.

It’s helped by the fact the Leica controls are, how should I say, to me are normal. Using the digital Leica like it’s film counterpart has helped a great deal and limiting my post processing to what I would otherwise use for negative post production. By sticking to just cropping, brightness and contrast editing plus some dodge and burn has not only won me over but made this very enjoyable experience. To only worry about composition, not be concerned what the camera is doing, which is probably where I went wrong the first time round with the Nikon.

I found these two young ladies in Canterbury and asked if they won’t mind a letting me take a street portrait of them. The jewellery and tattoos lent themselves to a black and white image.

Leica M-P (Typ 240) with the Summilux 50mm f/1.4 ASPH lens, taken in Canterbury, England. September 2021

Wisdom

Last Friday I spent a day street shooting, while the wife was shopping in Canterbury, England. Standing on the junction of Burgate and Butchery Lane near the Cathedral, this elderly gentleman walked up, stopped, looked up Butchery Lane, I focused. Then he turned to look back down Burgate, just as I pressed the shutter. I was for a moment concerned he might be lost or a little confused but then a woman called to him.

Luckily for me I had focused the Summilux spot on with aperture wide open and later viewing the image on the computer, to my amazement the picture is pin sharp. Indeed I’ve had to do very little to the picture other than a bit of dodge and burn on the buildings behind plus add my copyright at the bottom.

This for me, this has got to be my best image of this year so far.

Click to enlarge

Leica M-P (Typ 240) with the Summilux 50mm f/1.4 ASPH lens, using a B+W Neutral Density 2 Stop filter.