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Tuesday, 14 January 2014

It's Leica Ferrari...

Time, like Ferrari's, flies.
Hard to believe that I haven't posted a blog since July 2013. I guess that means either I've had nothing interesting to say/do or been too busy/lazy to post. I leave that one to your imagination.

The motley crew, pictured left  are gathered around the aforementioned sports car for a good reason;
Tip: always make sure you have £100K prop and a designer building close at hand whenever you are forced to do a group shot!



They are the excellent bunch of photographers and Leica enthusiasts that I've just had the pleasure of working with this last weekend at the inaugural Stephens Premier Leica workshop weekend at Kendal, up here in the Lakes. We got to play with the new Leica S system and I tried to teach these guys some new tricks with Lightroom 5.

Let me just repeat that, "play with the new Leica S system".
Have you seen one of these babies?

Here it is - all 7000 x 5000 odd pixels of 37MP medium format quality! Wow. But don't drop it. £16,000'ish for the body, £5,000 odd for a lens. Yup, it's not cheap. 

I got to play with it for a week, which coincided nicely with hurricane winds, torrential rain and zero light. Luckily the actual workshop weekend brightened up considerably and we were able to shoot some nice images around Windermere but I did try it out in anger shooting some landscapes as part of a shoot I did for BBC magazines. 

As it turned out I was glad to have it along because the light was uniformly grey and miserable so I needed all of that file depth and quality to drag a decent landscape image out of the murk, in Lightroom! Here it is:

Would you like to see the file that actually came out of the camera?

Nice eh? How about that for crappy light?

Yes, it's been thoroughly cooked in Lightroom and to be honest I'm not sure that I would have been able to rescue such a sows ear with many other camera's…the Leica S files are so rich and detailed and have such latitude you can do anything with them. Amazing.

Anyway, back to the workshop, it was a great treat to work with the guys from Stephens Premier Leica (check out their blog at http://www.stephenspremier.com/latest-news/
) and to be able to contribute to the weekend. I love exchanging ideas and notes with other photographers in what can sometimes feel like quite an isolated profession.

Will I be investing in a Leica S system? In my dreams. £20K buys a lot of Nikon kit! Would I rent one for the right job? In a heartbeat. And if landscape was my living I'd think very seriously about this camera - those files will print seriously big.

Meanwhile, here's a couple more images…