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Thread: Leica M10 - Using it Professionally?

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    Senior Member dave.gt's Avatar
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    Re: Leica M10 - Using it Professionally?

    Allen,

    Again, thank you for all your images posted. Wonderful.

    So, after some time, now... the summary so far (I presume) is this:

    There are relatively few photographers around actually making a living using the M10. Can this be correct? It is an amazing instrument yet it seems to be used more personal uses by choice.

    I will stay tuned as I observe those around me using the M10 and hopefully I will have a better understanding of where it seems to be going. As I slowly migrate back toward the M, whether it will be film or digital, I am curious to see how others are actually using their M cameras.

    Thanks to all for posting.
    Dave (GT)

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    Re: Leica M10 - Using it Professionally?

    Dave

    I ve used M cameras from the 70 s and still use two M10 s mostly for street shooting . With whats available today s EVF AF alternatives ..I would never choose the Leica M for professional work .

    The key to making a RF work for any type of photography is to master RF focusing techniques . This requires constant practice and usage . There have even been tutorials (PDFs) that set up a series of exercises to train your hand /eye coordination . (I looked and I can’t find my copy ). Using small apertures and pre focusing can work well but hardly yields the “no excuses” level off accuracy . If you can hit 85% “acceptably sharp” with a RF you are really really talented . This just does not match the best AF from most any modern EVF or DSLR camera and with eye autofocus ...you should be well into the 90-95% range .

    The advantage of the RF comes in three areas ...(1) the ability to see outside the frame and with clarity regardless of the focal length (2) the size and therefore the less intrusive nature of a RF and (3) the ability to really use the small very high quality and fast RF lenses .

    Conceded ......that if you can make a RF camera work professionally you are exceptionally talented . And for pure fun ....I will use no other gear for 90% of my shooting . But ...I don t have a client to satisfy and am considering the time coming when I will just not be quick enough to enjoy a RF . Even for street and travel ...two areas that RF cameras excel .....its hard to overlook the benefits of “eye AF’ or “focus tracking “ .

    Roger
    Roger Dunham
    http://rogerdunham.com/
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    Re: Leica M10 - Using it Professionally?

    Quote Originally Posted by glenerrolrd View Post
    Dave

    I ve used M cameras from the 70 s and still use two M10 s mostly for street shooting . With whats available today s EVF AF alternatives ..I would never choose the Leica M for professional work .

    The key to making a RF work for any type of photography is to master RF focusing techniques . This requires constant practice and usage . There have even been tutorials (PDFs) that set up a series of exercises to train your hand /eye coordination . (I looked and I can’t find my copy ). Using small apertures and pre focusing can work well but hardly yields the “no excuses” level off accuracy . If you can hit 85% “acceptably sharp” with a RF you are really really talented . This just does not match the best AF from most any modern EVF or DSLR camera and with eye autofocus ...you should be well into the 90-95% range .

    The advantage of the RF comes in three areas ...(1) the ability to see outside the frame and with clarity regardless of the focal length (2) the size and therefore the less intrusive nature of a RF and (3) the ability to really use the small very high quality and fast RF lenses .

    Conceded ......that if you can make a RF camera work professionally you are exceptionally talented . And for pure fun ....I will use no other gear for 90% of my shooting . But ...I don t have a client to satisfy and am considering the time coming when I will just not be quick enough to enjoy a RF . Even for street and travel ...two areas that RF cameras excel .....its hard to overlook the benefits of “eye AF’ or “focus tracking “ .

    Roger
    Good morning, Roger!

    Just taking a break from painting (the walls, not art, unfortunately), and thanks for your thoughts. My curiosity, not yet sated, keeps me thinking even while working on domestics and maintenance projects.

    It seems that, since I am working mostly with Medium Format, the M could be used just as well for scouting and personal use without carrying the entire backpack with me all the time, and saving the MF equipment for later in a lot of cases. Along that line of thought, different M cameras could be chosen for a look similar to the MF equipment I normally use.

    In other words, an M9 with the CCD would work well with the S006. Similarly, the CMOS models would be a match for the S007.

    Then again, it may be that I would not prefer matching the results and would prefer a higher ISO alternative to the S006. Interesting contemplations for me.

    Can you tell I am bored ?
    Dave (GT)

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    Re: Leica M10 - Using it Professionally?

    Quote Originally Posted by dave.gt View Post
    There are relatively few photographers around actually making a living using the M10. Can this be correct? It is an amazing instrument yet it seems to be used more personal uses by choice.
    Rangefinders are very specialized and Leica in particular is very expensive. You just need to look to market force to show that--how many camera companies make rangefinders and what are their sales volumes? That will reflect photographer demand. The main advantage to the rangefinder/viewfinder cameras was the ability to make a compact camera and, with the exception of Leica, make them affordable--think Olympus XAs or Fuji medium-format film rangefinders, for example. Reflex cameras were limited by the mirror box. Today, we have mirrorless cameras filling in that need and have direct viewing. Rangefinders were always an acquired taste.

    I am really grateful Leica is still in the business, although I will never be able to justify one. I am also really happy Fuji has kept their heritage with their X100 and X Pro lines--it is also neat how they have updated the type to the 21st century. I really like my X Pro2. I have always had a soft spot for specialized cameras: Widelux, Hexar, Nikonos, Mamiya 6 and C220, Horseman 612, Wista VX...

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    Re: Leica M10 - Using it Professionally?

    All the reasons Leica M doesn't work for Roger for pro work are some of the reasons they work for me. No in camera EVF, not having all the automation, no auto focus are all reasons I have chosen Leica M digital for my pro work as well as my personal work.I'm faster with a M 10 than with anything else. I shot with DSLRs for a decade and hated it. I hated the menus and all the stuff I don't like or use. My level of hitting focus is higher now than it was with auto focus DSLRs and I had some of the best auto focus lenses you can buy. I think it comes down to what works best for each individual. For me I like full control of everything. I find rangefinders, after some practice easy to focus and extremely reliable. I shoot a lot with a 90 APO and do not have difficulties even wide open. The one thing I really believe is Leica digital M is a REAL alternative to all the auto everything, complex menu, one size fits all options that are everywhere in the mirrorless and DSLR world. Again Leica M fits PERFECTLY with the way I see and work and it might not be the right tool for all but it is for me and I am so glad I have that option because there is really nothing else like it on the market.
    Last edited by airfrogusmc; 14th August 2019 at 07:24.
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    Re: Leica M10 - Using it Professionally?

    Allen, thanks!

    Now we are getting somewhere!

    I, too, am not a fan of EVF. I think Jorgen said it best, it is like wondering what the weather is and looking at it on television instead of walking outside. LOL, never thought about it that way.

    But as you said, it is whatever works best for the person using the camera of choice...

    Lately, I have been feeling overwhelmed with the technical minutiae and engineering discussions added to the computer tech-geek talk and so many other processes, gear, software, etc. having done that my entire life in engineering and academia, working with everything high-tech... I am completely burned out on it. Where is the fun of photography? Professionally, I found my best work was done when I enjoyed doing something that was fun and meaningful. I can say without hesitation, I am done with the past in large part because I will have none of that anymore, just simply tired of it.

    Leica has a history of simplicity and at this time in my life, that is paramount, to the point of bailing on photography altogether if it were not for choices that were simple and actually fun to use, but that is just for me.

    I am more convinced than ever that the Leica M (what model?) will be back in my future for paid work. It is just the best fit for most of what I am planning to do.

    Now, lenses are another matter, and I am going to delve into that swamp full of alligators in due time.
    Dave (GT)
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    Re: Leica M10 - Using it Professionally?

    For me lenses are always easy. I tend to see at a 35mm FoV on FF so I put my money into glass that best fits that way of seeing. Also need something wider for my pro work and for formal portraits something longer. But I would say that over 60% of what i shoot is with a 35 Summilux FLE. In addition I have a 35 Zeiss 2.8 Biogon C, a 24 Elmarit 2.8 aspherical, a 75 2.5 Summarit, a 90 2 Summicron APO and a 1950s USSR 50 2 Jupiter 8.

    I don't change lenses much. I pretty much leave the 35 Lux on one of my M 10s the 90 on the other M 10 and my 24 Elmarit on my M 262. The 50 in on my M-E at the moment and the Zeiss Biogon in on my MM.
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    Re: Leica M10 - Using it Professionally?

    Way too much theory…..… let some pictures talk.

    Here are some photos from a recent a food magazine, all pictures were made with a Leica M10.
    Why do I use a Leica M? because I like it as a simple tool/instrument.
    I could have done the job easily with a FuCaNiSo. I don’t need autofocus for this kind of shooting
    It’s a joy to take the M and lenses in my hand. I can feel the craftsmanship behind it,
    that is enough reason to work with it nearly every day.

    Ydo
    (sorry for my english)

    My website: YDO SOL IMAGES ? YDO SOL IMAGES
    Attached Images Attached Images        
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    Re: Leica M10 - Using it Professionally?

    Quote Originally Posted by Y Sol View Post
    Way too much theory…..… let some pictures talk.

    Here are some photos from a recent a food magazine, all pictures were made with a Leica M10.
    Why do I use a Leica M? because I like it as a simple tool/instrument.
    I could have done the job easily with a FuCaNiSo. I don’t need autofocus for this kind of shooting
    It’s a joy to take the M and lenses in my hand. I can feel the craftsmanship behind it,
    that is enough reason to work with it nearly every day.

    Ydo
    (sorry for my english)

    My website: YDO SOL IMAGES ? YDO SOL IMAGES
    Ydo,

    Thank you for sharing your work, it is inspiring! I think you summed up the reason for using an M in a way that we can all relate to. Leica has that quality and simplicity of use that we love.
    Dave (GT)
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    Re: Leica M10 - Using it Professionally?

    Quote Originally Posted by dave.gt View Post
    I would actually like to know what working professionals actually do with M cameras. Not many have ever responded.
    I do mostly advertising and editorial work but I also do what I call corporate photojournalism in which in most cases I am in the room with top white house officials, billionaires and other luminaries. The M10 (now M10-P) is small and unobtrusive but also has a fair bit of cache with the wealthier types and it comes into the scene much appreciated. Most of these meetings are pretty heady in topic and totally off the record, I can't even show the work here but think White House staff photographer level stuff.

    The one issue I had with the M10 in these documentary situations has been addressed with the M10-P and that is shutter noise. So it is not uncommon for me to go into one of these settings with either just a lone M10-P and 35mm 1.4 or that and a Nikon Z6 with a 50mm 1.8S on it in silent mode. But if I can swing it, I ride in with just the Leica and a nice sports coat on and become a fly on the wall, very fun, high paying and rewarding work the Leica M is perfect for.

    As for the debate about pay, that national average number for a photographer is *much* lower than my income but for some out there, it may work for their location and overall cost of living. I'm in agreement with Airfrog, most people I know pull in over 6 figures in our area, otherwise they are part time at best.
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    Re: Leica M10 - Using it Professionally?

    Allen, I appreciate your carrying the M10 image posting pretty much alone. Excellent examples of what you do.

    It still remains to be established that there are more than a small percentage of users using the M10 professionally. It appears that an overwhelming majority of M users are shooting for personal use only.

    It seems a bit depressing if that is the case. Dante is whispering that we need to step up our game!

    I still want one!
    Dave (GT)
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    Re: Leica M10 - Using it Professionally?

    Thanks Dave and I do think that you are right. Not a lot of pros use M 10s. I have a good friend that uses Leica M professional also but like him we are rare I think. And that's OK. A lot of people think, work and photograph much differently than I do and that's probably a good thing ha ha. We all should see and work differently. I just applaud Leica for making cameras like the MM and the M 10 because for me they fit a lot better then the other options I have today.
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    Re: Leica M10 - Using it Professionally?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ai_Print View Post
    I do mostly advertising and editorial work but I also do what I call corporate photojournalism in which in most cases I am in the room with top white house officials, billionaires and other luminaries. The M10 (now M10-P) is small and unobtrusive but also has a fair bit of cache with the wealthier types and it comes into the scene much appreciated. Most of these meetings are pretty heady in topic and totally off the record, I can't even show the work here but think White House staff photographer level stuff.

    The one issue I had with the M10 in these documentary situations has been addressed with the M10-P and that is shutter noise. So it is not uncommon for me to go into one of these settings with either just a lone M10-P and 35mm 1.4 or that and a Nikon Z6 with a 50mm 1.8S on it in silent mode. But if I can swing it, I ride in with just the Leica and a nice sports coat on and become a fly on the wall, very fun, high paying and rewarding work the Leica M is perfect for.

    As for the debate about pay, that national average number for a photographer is *much* lower than my income but for some out there, it may work for their location and overall cost of living. I'm in agreement with Airfrog, most people I know pull in over 6 figures in our area, otherwise they are part time at best.
    This post, as is Allen's posts, are enlightening. It is rare to actually read/hear someone's account of being a photographer in such a high profile situation. And using a Leica M as well! Very impressive and inspiring!

    Thanks so much for a glimpse into your work!!!
    Dave (GT)

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    Re: Leica M10 - Using it Professionally?

    Wi-fi?

    Is the M10 wi-fi capability actually useable professionally?

    The reason I ask is that I am happy with the Wi-fi on the Studio's H5D-50c. Using it with the iPad, checking focus, composition, exposure, etc in jpeg format has been very helpful with our on-location and outdoor shoots.

    Just wondering how the M10 wi-fi performs and the uses for it.
    Dave (GT)

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    Re: Leica M10 - Using it Professionally?

    Hi Dave I don't use it but here is some info. Don't know if it answers what you are asking though.
    Leica WLAN Function - Leica M10 WiFi Transfer — Jeff Mellody
    Last edited by airfrogusmc; 25th September 2019 at 06:31.
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    Re: Leica M10 - Using it Professionally?

    Quote Originally Posted by Y Sol View Post
    Way too much theory…..… let some pictures talk.

    Here are some photos from a recent a food magazine, all pictures were made with a Leica M10.
    Why do I use a Leica M? because I like it as a simple tool/instrument.
    I could have done the job easily with a FuCaNiSo. I don’t need autofocus for this kind of shooting
    It’s a joy to take the M and lenses in my hand. I can feel the craftsmanship behind it,
    that is enough reason to work with it nearly every day.

    Ydo
    (sorry for my english

    My website: YDO SOL IMAGES ? YDO SOL IMAGES
    Your English is just fine. Your images are even better!
    Thank you for posting them.
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    Re: Leica M10 - Using it Professionally?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ai_Print View Post
    I do mostly advertising and editorial work but I also do what I call corporate photojournalism in which in most cases I am in the room with top white house officials, billionaires and other luminaries. The M10 (now M10-P) is small and unobtrusive but also has a fair bit of cache with the wealthier types and it comes into the scene much appreciated. Most of these meetings are pretty heady in topic and totally off the record, I can't even show the work here but think White House staff photographer level stuff.

    The one issue I had with the M10 in these documentary situations has been addressed with the M10-P and that is shutter noise. So it is not uncommon for me to go into one of these settings with either just a lone M10-P and 35mm 1.4 or that and a Nikon Z6 with a 50mm 1.8S on it in silent mode. But if I can swing it, I ride in with just the Leica and a nice sports coat on and become a fly on the wall, very fun, high paying and rewarding work the Leica M is perfect for.

    As for the debate about pay, that national average number for a photographer is *much* lower than my income but for some out there, it may work for their location and overall cost of living. I'm in agreement with Airfrog, most people I know pull in over 6 figures in our area, otherwise they are part time at best.
    Just getting back...

    It is interesting that I saw an interview recently at the WH and there was someone shooting a chrome Leica M. The other ten photographers were using black dslr or mirrorless cameras.
    Dave (GT)

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