Quick and Light

Unexpected but true department: a Fuji dedicated flash is my favorite for non-dedicated Leica hot shoes.

(For dedicated shoes, too)

3 min read

Leak-Free

Not a Robust Test

Well, shucks. On the film roll loaded immediately after the Leaky One – within just five or ten minutes of that previously-shown light-stained shot – the results now appear 100% leakless, including the snapshot above.

Mystery leaks: they happen. I’ve read about cameras that have been sent to one expensive technician after another, and yet the leak was never found. Or maybe it’s some subtle mistake I made for that one roll. Lens change? I doubt it.

Every photo should have an element of mystery, sure. Just usually not this kind.

Pan F FTW

Living Room Peonies
TTArtisans 50mm ƒ/1.4 wide open, Pan F, D-76 1+1
Larger Scan

Further cementing my decision not to buy more Rollei Ortho 25: this quick test roll with Ilford Pan F+ in D-76 (1+1, 8.5 minutes @ 20C, if you must know). D-76’s different from the Rodinal used for the Rollei film, so it’s not a direct comparison in every way, but… for a classic fine-grained 35mm look this combo feels like the right confluence of simplicity, availablity, and expense.

And no, I’ve no aims of becoming a botanical photographer. This is just the sort of quick sketch that’s easily made in a country-adjacent suburb while the world is still mostly anchored at home. More grit and urban chaos to come, I’m sure.

The Big Leica

We mean the 1970’s version of “big,” not the SL2. The biggest film M ever made: the Leica M5. You might recognize it as Number Two in the police lineup above. It’s always been the Leica that people love to hate, so I bought a second one.

The first M5 was long ago, purchased new but years after it had been discontinued. It was languishing on a Minneapolis shop shelf: body with a 50mm Summicron and I probably paid around $900. But I was a student and couldn’t afford to feed it – sold it off during my first year at CalArts, to another student who’d driven up from UCLA. Unlike me he could afford both a Leica and a car.

3 min read

The Leak

Embarcadero

Light leak. You can barely see it here, up the middle of the frame. Of all the rolls I’ve run through my old CL thus far, only this one roll shows a leak. Later or earlier: nada.

On this roll, the leak’s spaced between multiple frames: three apart, then six, then eight… and each time, from early frames to later, it moves to a different location, each becoming smaller for the higher-numbered photos.

My guess: a pinhole-sized burst of light got into the film takeup chamber, late in the roll. Maybe from the frame counter. The dot of light scattered down an angle into concentric, more-tightly-wound, parts of the film.

And maybe this was just for a brief moment – most frames, no problem. Later rolls: great. Either way, annoying. A cost for using this little 50-year-old box.