The fight between the ever popular SLR and the sleek Rangefinder.
SLR camera’s are well known for displaying digital readings in the viewfinder. Many people are too busy with their face hard pressed to the viewfinder watching and altering the shutter speeds and aperture that it distracts the emotional connection to just take a photograph. It is as reminiscent to watching a timer count down from 4000 to 0 and thats a long time spent watching that in shutter speed.
So with all this information flooding our eyes which include; white balance, multiple focusing points selection, custom controls and picture styles people get too lost with the basic’s of taking that photograph. You see it all the time the brain is flooded and half the time you see people just looking at the back of the screen and the emotional connection is lost. (Chimping was invented by the digital SLR)
Photography through a Rangefinder is a different story and that story have been un-altered for about 100 years. Looking at the design its quite simple and clear that a rangefinder connects you to the camera at your finger tips physically therefor it emotionally connects you to taking a photograph.
This is what I have found most enjoyable with photographing with a Leica compared to a SLR or newer digital SLR. The biggest light bulb moments I see with people when they first use a rangefinder they say “I am instantly connected” but when you ask them why? they just say that it “just feels right”…..and like the old saying “Can’t put my finger on it” and making a physical connection thats where it become’s far more emotional and spiritual. So you can see why a Leica photographer would call themselves a purist photographer.
When I picked up the Leica that connection was instantly changed and it was felt as I flipped, rotated and spun the camera in my hands . Looking closely at the design I said to myself those German’s have done it right. There’s a lot of thought that goes into designing a camera and technology doesn’t always have to take over completely and it doesn’t need too. We need to take a step back from the advanced technological side before worrying about the extra features in the next camera and what it has because you loose yourself from the basic purpose of just taking a photograph.
I have always loved photography since I first picked up a camera and admit both styles of camera’s compliment each other in many ways. Its a good feeling just take a photograph with the basic’s and there’s nothing wrong with that even though it might cost an arm a leg and an arm for that new Leica M. But to many that price point is a problem so where do we all find our selves.. Back at the beginning lost in the world of wasting time on the cheaper alternative 😉
Feel free to comment on your thoughts of SLR verse Rangefinder.
Camera’s in the photograph;
Canon F-1New with FD 50mm 1.2L
Canon F-1 with FD 85mm 1.2L
Leica M7 with 35mm Summicron ASPH F2
Leica MP with 50mm Summicron F2
Photo taken with a Canon 5D Mark III with 24-105mm F4 L lens 😉
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