Love the camera. Love the lens. Hated the combination today. Not my most productive afternoon. By a long shot.


I was going to walk this afternoon with a photographer friend who can be difficult with which to schedule.  Everything has a contingency attached. And last minutes schedule changes are rampant. When I didn't hear from him I decided not to waste a perfectly good afternoon sitting around the studio. Instead I decided it would be fun to grab a camera that had been recently neglected and pair it up with a completely counter-intuitive lens. I'd walk around and get a different perspective from that delivered by wide angle and normal lenses. I was so sure the world of visual delights would just open up for me and that I'd come home with a basket of keepers. 

It didn't work out that way. I should preface all this by saying that even though the skies were clear and the temperature a nice 60° we had some pretty powerful wind gusts all day long. The "breezes" whipped up a lot of dust and pollen but it also had the effect of chilling me down when I walked on the shaded side of the streets. But of course you want to walk on the shady sides of the streets so you can see the way the sun strikes the buildings on the sunny side of the street. 

I selected a camera that has worked admirably for me in the past; the Leica CL. And I paired it with one of my sharpest and best performing lenses; the Sigma 65mm f2.0. I should have realized early on that the equivalent focal length (comparing APS-C to full frame) was 98.5mm. Very tight for urban street photography. Too tight. Which limited me to grabbing detail shots instead. 

The picture taking process was frustrating and, of course, as I walked through the familiar streets every shot looked like it would be best captured by something like a 24mm lens, or even a 20mm. But not a veritable telephoto. The silver lining to the day was getting out and walking three plus miles in nice (but windy) weather. That, and coffee.

The only lesson I learned today was that I really like using the Leica CL camera body and that the files from the camera are sharp and detailed even though it's a smaller format than the one in the bigger Leica cameras I have mostly been using lately. I love the way the CL feels in my hands and the exposure metering in the camera is right on the money. It's rare that I do an entire walk without having to mess with exposure compensation.  But I didn't need to tweak even one frame. 

In retrospect what I should have done is bring along the CL coupled with the 16mm f1.4 Sigma and then, since I was wearing a jacket with big pockets, dropped the 56mm f1.4 Sigma into a pocket and brought it along as well. If I had been working on a job I would have put each lens on its own CL and balanced the load over my two shoulders. Another lesson learned...

An alternative solution would have been to bring the Sigma 18-50mm f2.8 zoom along instead. But there is always next time. 

Coffee at MaƱana Coffee, a brief stop into the West Chelsea Contemporary Art Gallery on Sixth, a romp through the REI store (my favorite pants are back in stock) and then back home. Not a completely lost afternoon but what I really got done would have fit onto a Post-It note if you wrote it all down with big letters. 

Here's some photos from the afternoon. Be nice....

Swim practice this morning was fun. The wind made little wavelets in the pool. The wind made our exit from the pool exciting and enervating. 

What does the brain trust here know about vitamin K2 M7? If you have information to share that would be great. Seems promising for heart and bone loss issues. It's pretty new research but I've read some promising studies. Chime in if you know stuff. 

Thanks, Kirk