Paris Strike – Manif, Walks, Party

My diary of pictures from Paris is now on line, on ‘My London Diary‘ and includes pictures from several walks around Paris – thanks to the transport strike there I walked everywhere.

I also got to photograph a ‘manif‘ by the transport workers – where I met a and photographed an angel, as well as some of the union leaders and others there.

© L’Ange Blanc – see
Image used with permission.

There are also some pictures taken at an excellent party; the party was good, so I’ve no idea who took some of the pictures, though I do appear in them. I think we all had a good time.

To protect the guilty I deliberately haven’t included any names in the captions, though you might recognise some of us. The same is true of the photographers I’ve shown at Paris Photo.

Most of the pictures from Paris were taken on the Leica M8, a camera about which I still have mixed feelings. Working with it is almost like using a film Leica, but the shutter noise can be obtrusive. And there are still problems if you haven’t got the latest Leica lenses with 6 bit coding.

This would matter less if Leica actually made suitable lenses for use with this 1.3x camera, preferably by bringing out some relatively cheap 24mm, 21mm and wider optics (They have produced a 28mm f2.8, but I’d like wider.)

Voigtlander have the lenses (and I own several) but they don’t have the Leica coding. You can add this manually, but this doesn’t work with my 21mm as it has the incorrect lens adapter. The coding allows the camera to compensate for the lens vignetting – which when using the IR cut filter needed for decent colour gives your pictures cyan corners.

Mostly I worked with a Leica 35mm f1.4 (which Leica says won’t work with the camera) fitted with an IR cut filter and some appropriate black marks for 6 bit coding made with a genuine ‘Sharpie’ pen. This is fine, but basically a standard lens (1.3 x 35 = 45.5)

With the Voigtlander 21mm f4, every picture has to be run through software to remove the colour vignetting. It’s an extra chore and using PTCorrect as a Photoshop plugin doesn’t always do the job quite perfectly. I’m hoping I can do it better with CornerFix once I get to grips with it.

Leica could add a menu item as a firmware upgrade that allowed users to get suitable built-in support for non-coded lenses. It would make many users a lot happier with the camera.

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