Category Archives: Inspiration

My Leica M10 Lightroom Presets.

I recently discussed the Lightroom Presets I have been working on, and a few of you asked whether they could be purchased.

My initial response was no, for the simple reason that it is time-consuming to provide technical support for any issues that may arise.  However, I continue to receive requests and responding to each one has — ironically — consumed a good chunk of time! 🙂

So here’s what I’ve decided to do:

I will make my 3 presets available for purchase but with the understanding that:

  1. There will be no technical support (you assume the burden of installing/using these!).  I will, however, say this much about their intended use: the “Film Base” preset is meant for photos that are exposed properly or slightly over-exposed; the “Film Soft Portrait” preset is meant for photos that are slightly underexposed or, as its name suggests, for portraits; the “Skin Tones” preset reduces red/orange contamination in skin tones.
  2. The presets are not meant to yield “finished” images.  For some photos they may be sufficient, but for most they will only serve as a good starting point.  Essentially, these presets contain the settings I use when I begin post-processing my Leica M10 files.  They are not meant to emulate a specific film; I am not interested in re-inventing a look that was perfected by Kodak, Fuji, etc.  If you want the look of film, I suggest you photograph with it!  The only reason the word “film” appears in the names is because of how I’ve set the tone curve to handle light and shadows (the way most films do).

If you agree to the above, my three Leica M10 presets may be purchased for:

US $15

(total price for all 3)

Are they are worth $15?   I’ll leave it up to you to decide.  They help me save time and effort, so they are certainly valuable to me.

If you are still interested in proceeding:

Click here to purchase via PayPal.

Once payment is received, the files will be sent to you via email and you will need to import them into your copy of Lightroom.

Please note that it may take up to 24 hours for me to email you the presets.

—Peter.

 

 

 

 

The identity of Undisclosed Lens #7.

Undisclosed Lens #7 is:

The 7Artisans 50mm f/1.1 (Leica M mount)

The comparison test I posted yesterday revealed something unexpected: the minimum focus distance is greater than the advertised 0.7 m (either that or my Leica 50mm Summilux ASPH focuses closer than 0.7 m, which is unlikely).  I hadn’t noticed it until I ran the head-to-head comparison and found that I couldn’t get as close with the 7Artisans as I could with the Leica.

Other than that (disappointing) surprise, I have been satisfied with the 7Artisans 50mm f/1.1.  It’s an interesting lens that has polarized photographers’ opinions of it (although some have passed judgment without actually laying their hands on one).   The mini-controversy surrounding it was the main reason I wanted to post images without first identifying the lens.

Those who criticize this 7Artisans lens I think miss the point.  In my case, I bought it hoping for a dreamy look (for lack of a better phrase) that the technically more capable 50 ‘lux does not as readily provide.

Moreover, having previously owned the Leica f/1 Noctilux (a lens also known for its dreamy look), I would say that the 7Artisans 50mm f/1.1 compares quite favourably and it would, in fact, be my choice between the two.

—Peter.

Examples of recent images:

 

 

 

 

Test: Leica 50mm Summilux vs. Undisclosed Lens #7.

Leica 50mm Summilux ASPH vs. Undisclosed Lens #7.

(EDIT January 4, 2018 I have revealed the identify of Lens #7 here.)

  • Both lenses mounted on a Leica M10
  • @ f/1.4
  • @ minimum 0.7 m focus distance (nonetheless, notice the field of view difference)
  • Identical default sharpening settings in Lightroom
  • No post-processing (nonetheless, notice colour differences)

 

Entire scene (please click on image to enlarge):

100% centre crop (please click on image to enlarge):

Which one is “superior”?:

Clearly the Leica 50mm Summilux ASPH.

Will I still continue to use Undisclosed Lens #7?:

Yes.  I value this lens for its “flaws”.

—Peter.

Film Photographers Rejoice! New Plustek OpticFilm 120 Pro Film Scanner.

I’m sure a few of you already know this, but for those of you who don’t, Plustek is introducing an updated version of its OpticFilm 120 film scanner.  The new scanner is called the Plustek OpticFilm 120 Pro.

I asked for an improved version of the 120 a year-and-a-half ago and it looks like Plustek has come through.

Having owned several Plustek dedicated film scanners, I can say that I have been satisfied with their products (and consider them superior to flatbed scanners) but would of course welcome improvements in ease of use, precision, speed, resolution, and dynamic range.

Therefore, I am really looking forward to seeing this new scanner in action.

—Peter.

 

Happy 2019!

Happy 2019!

May good light shine upon you.

—Peter.

(Test Shot #6 – Undisclosed Lens #7)

Leica M10 + Undisclosed Lens #7.

 

Praying for time.

Test Shot #4, a candid portrait, created with Undisclosed Lens #7.

The title is borrowed from George Michael’s song.

Maybe we should all be praying for time.

—Peter.

Leica M10 + Undisclosed Lens #7.

The Christmas Portrait, 2018 Edition.

This also happens to be Test Shot #3 of Undisclosed Lens #7, stopped down this time in order to get everyone in focus (the first two test images were shot wide open).

Of note, after only a day’s worth of experience with this lens, I was confidant enough to use it for a group portrait.

As an aside, we had a relatively warm Christmas week this year, hence the absence of snow.

—Peter.

Leica M10 + Undisclosed Lens #7.

Test Shot #2 – Portrait – Undisclosed Lens #7.

Leica M10 + Undisclosed Lens #7.

 

10 Christmas Scenes.

 

Leica M10 + Leica 50mm Summilux ASPH f/1.4.

Test Shot – Undisclosed Lens #7.

Sometimes, when you’re lacking inspiration, you have to find it in a new piece of gear.

(spoken like a photographer trying to justify another lens)

—Peter.

Leica M10 + Undisclosed Lens #7.

The Sunset Portrait, Christmas Edition.

Leica M10 + Leica 50mm Summilux ASPH f/1.4.

Oh the irony.

Today I finally figured out how to properly process my Leica M10 files (the irony is that last weekend I announced the end of this blog).

After months of experimentation, I created a custom preset in Lightroom that strikes a nice balance between punching up the contrast and colour, enhancing skin tones, and preserving detail.  The overall effect is subtle, which is what I want.

Most of the commercial presets I’ve tried result in cartoonish effects (specifically, with respect to colour shifts and detail obliteration) that are painted over with digital “grain”, so I’ve avoided using them.

Here is an example of my preset in action:

(click for a larger view)

Here is another example:

(click for a larger view)

I can’t wait to work with this (and possibly fine-tune it some more).

By the way, I want to thank all of you who took the time to write to me, both on this site and via email, with words of encouragement.  I am very grateful for your kindness.

—Peter.

Season’s Greetings… and…

For almost a decade I’ve enjoyed posting images and engaging in discussion with fellow photographers and photo enthusiasts on this site.

Truth be told, it wasn’t always a fun process, and I wasn’t always happy doing it.

I did however strive to be honest… with you and with myself.  I was wrong about some things, changed my equipment far too frequently, and often overestimated my abilities and influence.

And I documented it all, here.

Now I believe the time has come to stop posting.  Knowing myself, I will continue to have an intermittent presence online (I love the photography community far too much to completely stop interacting with all of you) but it won’t be here.

Thank you for your attention and support.

I hope 2019 is kind to you and your loved ones.

(And please remember to enjoy Life’s Little Moments.)

Season’s Greetings.

—Peter.

 

EDIT: December 29, 2018.

After a restful holiday and an almost complete recovery from illness, I’ve decided to keep this blog going for as long as I can.  Thank you again for all of your messages of support.

—Peter.

Leica M10 + Leica 50mm Summilux ASPH f/1.4.

 

 

A little piece (1 and 2).

Leica M10 + Leica 50mm Summilux ASPH f/1.4.

14 Years.

Happy Birthday.

—Peter.

Leica M10 + Leica 50mm Summilux ASPH f/1.4.

Decorating the Tree (1 and 2).

‘Tis the Season.

—Peter.

Leica M10 + Leica 50mm Summilux ASPH f/1.4.