Jump to content

The Leica Forum uses cookies. Read the privacy statement for more info. To remove this message, please click the button to the right:    OK, understood.

Photo
- - - - -

Making the best of a M5


  • Please log in to reply
11 replies to this topic

#1 lilmsmaggie

lilmsmaggie

    Neuer Benutzer

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 2 posts
  • City / Ort:Elk Grove, CA

Posted 19 January 2011 - 06:01

Advertisement (Gone after free registration)
Hi,

I'm new to this forum and Leica's. As luck would have it, I'm the new owner of a Leica M5 w/ 50mm f2 Summicron lens. This is my first real rangefinder and Leica. I'm used to shooting with SLR's and seeing what the "lens" sees.

I'd like to do some street photography but need to understand how to optimize:

(1) fast focusing when my subject may be on the move and

(2) zone focusing when I have a bit more time.

Bottomline - I'm looking for rangefinder shooting techniques. :)

#2 ho_co

ho_co

    Sponsoring Member

  • Premium Member
  • 7,761 posts

Posted 19 January 2011 - 06:10

Welcome to the forum, and congratulations on getting what I think is the best film Leica ever.

Practice is the main thing, of course.

One focus trick some recommend is that you always return the lens to infinity when you stop shooting; that way, you only need to turn it one direction.

Another thing is to prefocus on where you know the subject will be, watch through the finder, and fire when the two images coincide.

A variant of that also works in lower light or with faster lenses; in a close situation, swaying your body slightly forward and back once you've set the focus can line up the two images much more quickly than twisting the focus ring back and forth.

With manual-focus SLRs, one generally needs to push the lens through the best focus, then slide back through and come back again to shoot. That is, you use the fact that the image is getting less sharp again as a sign you've overshot, and move back in a smaller step to see that you've got it. With a rangefinder, the coincident image is usually so sharply delineated that you don't focus back and forth, but bring the images into alignment once and fire. (My eyes aren't as good as when I learned that, but it's still a good rule to keep in mind. If it takes more than two seconds to focus, you're doing something wrong.)

Keep in mind also that the rangefinder has two windows. Because of the way the M5's speed knob is placed, it's easier to keep your fingers out of the way of the smaller one. But if a finger or the strap blocks the smaller window, the second image will disappear from the finder.


Enjoy the camera! Others will doubtless have their tips and probably some book recommendations as well. :)

Edited by ho_co, 19 January 2011 - 06:25.

  • jacarape and lilmsmaggie said thank you to this
Best,

Howard

#3 colin_d

colin_d

    Erfahrener Benutzer

  • Members
  • 128 posts
  • City / Ort:Melbourne

Posted 19 January 2011 - 12:14

Welcome, I changed over from SLR as well just over 18 months ago to an M5. It is a great camera and I will never go back.

It took a little while for me to get used to the focussing, now I try and preset the focus on the street to a set distance then shoot when I am in that range or adjust slightly. I think knowing your lens is just as important as knowing the camera. Work out what focussing distances work well with what exposure settings in what circumstances with your Cron.

Happy shooting, the experience is unsurpassed with the M5.
  • lilmsmaggie said thank you to this

#4 Xmas

Xmas

    Erfahrener Benutzer

  • Members
  • 2,546 posts

Posted 19 January 2011 - 12:45

Hi

Street shooting for people gestulating, scratching ear etc.

5cm lens 12 foot f/8 or smaller 1/125
35mm lens 6 foot f/5.6 ditto
28mm lens 5 foot f/4.5 ditto

400 ASA Ilford Delta scale focus, instinctive point from hip, an MD would do, a winder would help, I use IXMOO so an M5 would not help.

If it is too dark I go to coffee shop.

Noel
  • colin_d and lilmsmaggie said thank you to this

#5 colin_d

colin_d

    Erfahrener Benutzer

  • Members
  • 128 posts
  • City / Ort:Melbourne

Posted 20 January 2011 - 00:36

Noel, those are good guides, thanks.

But humour my extreme ignorance, the reference to MD and IXMOO, what are they? :o

And the winder, are you referring to the film winder?
  • lilmsmaggie said thank you to this

#6 jpattison

jpattison

    Erfahrener Benutzer

  • Premium Member
  • 1,185 posts
  • City / Ort:Manchester, UK

Posted 20 January 2011 - 22:44

Hi Colin,
the Wiki pages at the top of the Forum is useful for searching ....

MD is an M body with no viewfinder (Noel reckons if shooting from the hip, who needs one?) it is used with a Visoflex (see Wiki)

He refers generally to a motor winder (for M4-2 onward, not the M5) to make street shooting faster.

IXMOO is a reloadable metal cassette (can't be used in M5)

John
  • colin_d and lilmsmaggie said thank you to this

in progress website.. http://www.johnpatti...hy.zenfolio.com

in progress Flikr page... https://www.flickr.c...th/15402820483/


#7 jpattison

jpattison

    Erfahrener Benutzer

  • Premium Member
  • 1,185 posts
  • City / Ort:Manchester, UK

Posted 20 January 2011 - 22:50

Watch Chris Weeks' video in 3 parts. Can be viewed full screen.
Various street shooters talk about street technique with film and digital.

Street Photography by Chris Weeks and the new Leica M9 | Photoinduced.com

John

Edited by jpattison, 20 January 2011 - 23:24.
typo

  • lilmsmaggie said thank you to this

#8 lilmsmaggie

lilmsmaggie

    Neuer Benutzer

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 2 posts
  • City / Ort:Elk Grove, CA

Posted 21 January 2011 - 00:47

Thanks for all the good info. I'll check out the Wiki too!

Dwain

#9 Bateleur

Bateleur

    Erfahrener Benutzer

  • Members
  • 1,049 posts
  • City / Ort:Vught

Posted 21 January 2011 - 12:53

My two cents worth ...

Familiarity first and foremost with your equipment, that all settings come naturally for instance focus direction, turning the shutter speed instinctively.

Also being prepared for instance if you have a tab on the focus ring that it is always at a position that suits the expected subject distance as Noel suggests, and preempting the exposure by continually adjusting if you change from shadow to direct sunlight ie you are able to shoot without having to match needles or consult the focus patch.

#10 Xmas

Xmas

    Erfahrener Benutzer

  • Members
  • 2,546 posts

Posted 21 January 2011 - 14:26

Yes I use a meter, meter for

subject in shadow
subject in sun
sun behing cloud

memorise three apertures (or four).

Repeat every hour at begining and end of day.

It is dark here so it is f/5.6 most of time with 400 ISO.

If you are new use XP2.

The reason for instinctive point is you can only anticipate a kiss or a slap to a degree, by the time you get the camera to eye it is frequently too late, you can be too early as well, a winder might give you a second shot, got one never use it.

Noel

#11 zlatkob

zlatkob

    Erfahrener Benutzer

  • Members
  • 1,963 posts
  • City / Ort:New Jersey, USA

Posted 21 January 2011 - 14:38

Good advice from Yanidel here: Manual focus technique

#12 Xmas

Xmas

    Erfahrener Benutzer

  • Members
  • 2,546 posts

Posted 21 January 2011 - 16:00

Good advice from Yanidel here: Manual focus technique

shoot from hip instinctive point

CNY '07 newr to Leicester Sq Tube prefocus 6 foot, XP2 mini lab scan f/5.6 1/125 Canon P Canon 35mm f/2 type II

Noel

Attached Files






0 user(s) are reading this topic