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Summicron 90mm Portrait
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Leica Blog – Founder / Story

I’m a self taught photographer with 10+ years experience of photographing portraits, models and weddings.  After my first 3 years I was teaching photography to fellow professionals in the UK and overseas and after 4 years I bought my first Leica camera.  As a child my Grandfather inspired me to draw and taught me to paint with watercolours.  As a teenager I taught myself very fine detail acrylic painting but went on to study science (and later finance) rather than the arts.

Photography came to me later after an ex girlfriend kindly bought me a camera one Christmas.  I was immediately hooked and 3 months later a bought a better camera and then another.  My inquisitive data driven mindset and tendancy to document things inspired me to start this blog as a personal project.  When reading about photography and researching new cameras I find it is the perfect place to record everything I learn and I can share it with others.

Mr Leica Photographer Blog

Coventry photography studio based UK portrait and wedding photographer using digital Leica cameras and a wide range of film cameras.  Analogue cameras include 35mm, medium format and large format and film developing is done in house.  Cameras, lenses and films are tested during model photography photo shoots both in the UK and overseas.  Blog reviews include a combination of technical detail, example images and side by side comparisons.

Before starting MrLeica.com I used to write technical articles for UK photography magazines.  As I continue to collect and test cameras and photography equipment I now share the information here.  I hope you find the content as enjoyable to read as it is to document.

Join me on YouTube! to see the latest and visual of some of the cameras!

Thanks

Matt Osborne

Behind the Scenes (2)
LEICA. LENSES. CAMERAS. WORKSHOP. WEDDING. PRESETS. FILM
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TTArtisan 28mm f5.6 lens Leica M

Sharing my experience of the TTArtisan 28mm f5.6 lens (copy of the legendary Leica Summaron 28mm f5.6). 28mm portraits, film & digital.

Cheap Leica Clone: TTArtisan 28mm f5.6

In this article I share my experience of using the Chinese TTArtisan 28mm f5.6 M lens, a clone/ copy of the legendary Leica Summaron 28mm f5.6. I use the lens for 28mm portraits, on film and with digital cameras.

YouTube! TTArtisan 28mm f5.6 (Leica M)

*The new 7Artisans 28mm f5.6 is another option so I will cover that lens too. YouTube videos linked below and together with related 28mm lens videos.

TTArtisan 28mm f/5.6 lens for Leica M mount

Pergear kindly sent me an early copy of the new 28mm TTArtisan lens for Leica M cameras to review. I think my YouTube video was one of the first shared on the platform so I felt fortunate to receive a copy to play with. Thanks Pergear! My copy came without a lens hood being a pre-release version but they are now supplied with a lens hood.

Voigtlander Nokton 50mm f1.5 LTM ASPH (Testing)

Expectations vs Reality

I’m still reasonably new to Chinese lenses. I know many Leica users wouldn’t dream of putting such a thing on their treasured Leica camera but I tend to take a more practical view. If it’s good I’m happy to use it with my various Leica bodies, regardless of the brand.

Saying that, my expectations were mid to low for this cheap lens. I knew it was a copy of a Leica lens and we’ll come to that further down.

Build quality

Out the box the first thing I notice was the size! So compact ..and pretty! Next it was the weight (151g / 5.3oz). This is a solid lens like you would expect from Leica. Older Leica lenses especially like the Leica Summicron 50mm f2 DR and Leica Summarit 50mm f1.5. All 3 of these lenses are heavy relative to their compact size.

The focal throw is smooth and the aperture scale has nice precise feeling 1 stop clicks. Far better than I would expect from a cheap Chinese clone lens. I enjoy old lenses as you may know if you follow the blog. I really appreciate the styling of this lens, it makes a Leica camera look better than without in my opinion. It looks particularly good on a black Leica body such as my Leica M4-P.

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TTArtisan 28mm f5.6 on digital Leica camera

What about image quality I’m sure you ask? Well again, better than expected. On my first outing with the lens I used it on the digital Leica SL full frame mirrorless camera and my Leica M240 digital rangefinder camera. See all the photos in the linked YouTube video below.

28mm street photography + travel photography

As a photographer that shoots mostly model portraits (and weddings) the 28mm focal length may not be my first choice. If however you are a street photographer I think 28mm is perfect. 28mm is my most used focal length for non-portraits and small lenses like this make it the perfect travel lens.

TTArtisan 28mm f5.6 Review
Leica SL + TTArtisan 28mm f5.6

Architecture with 28mm lens

Normally I think photographers would agree that 28mm is too tight for architecture shots. But if you want a tighter crop it can work well if you don’t mind the more artistic impression vs. perfection. The TTArtisan 28mm f5.6 can’t compete with well corrected APO lenses and ASPH lenses, especially in the corners but you can still make nice photos with it.

New TTArtisan 28mm f5.6
Leica M240 + TTArtisan 28mm f5.6
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28mm Leica portraits

It’s not often you read 28mm and portraits in the same sentence but you might be surprised! I found myself in a smaller than expected Airbnb in Budapest for a model shoot and 35mm wasn’t wide enough to get the shots I wanted. I had the 28mm TTArtisan lens with me for my travel photography so I used that instead.

There is a catch though. Most rangefinder lenses have a close focusing distance of 0.7m to 1m (limited to match the Leica camera rangefinder). The TTArtisan 28mm 5.6 minimum focus distance is 1m so with a 28mm focal length that’s not close enough to make portraits with any impact (for me). If however you use the Leica SL series (SL, SL2, SL2-S), these cameras are L mount so you can then use the 7Artisans Leica M-L close focus adapter. I use this adapter frequently on the Leica SL and Lumix S5 with all my Leica M mount lenses, Leica screw mount lenses and Leica R lenses. Now I can focus closer I am able to make portraits I like and I used it for the whole photoshoot. I think this was the start of my love for this lens!

The following photos are shot with the Leica SL camera, 7Artisans close focus adapter and TTArtisan 28mm f5.6 lens. (Captured in RAW with the MrLeica Leica SL B&W preset applied in Adobe Lightroom).

TTArtisan 28mm f5.6 Portrait
TTArtisan 28mm f5.6 Portrait
TTArtisan 28mm f5.6 Portrait
TTArtisan 28mm Portrait
TTArtisan 28mm f5.6 Portraits
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*If you enjoy female portraiture you can find more photos on my Instagram

Black and white film – TTArtisan 28mm 5.6

On the mentioned Budapest trip I was also using various film cameras. I had various cameras including a Leica M4-P, Leica CL (film) and Contax T2. The Leica CL paired well with the compact 28mm TTArtisan lens to give a small setup for walkabout. The 35mm Leica CL unlike the Minolta CL doesn’t have 28mm framelines so I used the entire viewfinder to approximate the 28mm composition. The better choice was the Leica M4-P which is a nicer camera (other than slightly bigger) and gives you 28mm frame lines.

Here are a series of photos shot on my various photowalks in Budapest. As with most images in this article, double click the photo to view in full res. Photos were shot at f5.6-f11, mostly by zone focusing (hyperfocal distance). If you want to join me on a future photowalk group workshop day join my mailing list.

Budapest Apartment
The Train from Ukraine
Leica M4-P
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The beauty of rangefinder cameras is you can use a slow shutter speed if there is not enough light for a f5.6 lens. For these low light shots I braced myself and shot with a shutter speed of 1/15 to 1/30.

Leica M4-P + TTA 28mm
TTArtisan 28mm f2.8 on Film
Leica M4-P + TTArtisan 28mm f5.6
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Colour film – TTArtisan 28mm f/5.6

The blue sky weather and yellow trams of Budapest made me want to shoot colour film too. Here are some more TTArtisan 28mm f5.6 sample photos, taken with the Leica CL (I believe) and expired Fuji Superia film.

Expired Fuji Superia 1600@800
TTArtisan 28mm f5.6 on Film
Expired Fuji Superia 1600
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TTArtisan 28mm f5.6 vs Leica Summaron 28mm f5.6

Is the TTArtisan 28mm 5.6 a clone of the Summaron 28mm Leica lens? Yes it’s very close but not an exact copy. See my YouTube video where I explain the differences. A Patreon friend who owns the Leica Summaron 28mm f5.6 speaks very highly of the lens. If you don’t know, the Summaron 28mm was original released as a Leica screw mount lens and only more recently was re-released as a retro M mount lens. Unlike modern Leica lenses the older design of the Summaron gives a less clinical less perfect look. Lower micro contrast helps in this regard and that in turn helps give a more filmic look.

I knew the original Leica Summaron was designed as a less perfect lens so I expected the same from the TTArtisan clone. The Leica should be more perfect relative to the Chinese copy but I do like the optical flaws of the TTArtisan. It helps me make more artistic photos vs pixel perfect and it’s sharp enough wide open for my needs.

28mm f5.6 TTArtisan vs 7Artisan

If you follow the various forums online you may have seen that 7Artisans have now also released their own 28mm f5.6 lens. As with Pergear, they reached out and sent me a copy of the lens to review for YouTube. The question is which lens is the best?

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ttartisan-28mm-5.6-vs-7artisans-28mm-5.6

7Artisans 28mm f5.6 vs TTArtisan 28mm f5.6

I was interested to try the new 7Artisans 28mm f5.6 lens for Leica M but I had my reservations. I was not sure how they could beat the TTArtisan version. The TTArtisan looks 10x better, its smaller and it feels great. I took both lenses to Portugal to do some side by side testing for YouTube.

First impressions? The TTArtisan is better made and looks better but what about the photos. The 7Artisan 28mm f/5.6 has higher contrast making the photos appear slightly sharper and with more saturation. Both lenses have heavy vignetting wide open and I think the 7Artisans has slightly less stopped down.

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Cheap 28mm lens for Leica M camera

So which is the best cheap 28mm lens for your Leica M camera if you are on a tight budget? For me, I need the photos to be good enough and then I need to enjoy using the camera gear. Some big fat heavy lenses might be amazing but if I don’t want to carry them I wont use them. Equally if something is really small but has less functionality again I will try to find a happy medium. The TTArtisan ticks my boxes for looks, build quality, image quality and price.

Price of the TTArtisan 28mm 5.6?

Talking of price how much does this little lens cost –

*Subscribe to the Pergear newsletter to enjoy 5% off your first order

Vintage 28mm lenses for Leica

You could also consider some of the older vintage 28mm lenses. 2 lenses I use include the Canon 28mm f2.8 LTM and the Orion-15 28mm f6 –

TTArtisan 28mm f5.6 Review – YouTube

Here is my original review together with my first impressions of the lens

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7Artisans 28mm f5.6 Review – YouTube

Watch to see side by side example photos using TTArtisan vs 7Artisans 28mm

Best 28mm lens for Leica M?

If you want the best 28mm lens for Leica M cameras then the TTArtisan is not it. The maximum aperture of f5.6 is not suitable as the only 28mm lens in your kit bag for most of us. For my Leica wedding photography I need a faster lens. In the past I used the Leica Summaron 28mm f2 v1 and now I use the new Voigtlander 28mm f2 Ultron v2. If you have the cash the best 28mm is the Leica Summilux-M 28mm f1.4 ASPH. Sadly I don’t yet have the cash but it would be so good for weddings!

If you want something smaller I think the Leica Elmarit 28mm f2.8 is still king, giving the perfect balance of size and optical performance for travel.

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Best 28mm lens, period?

I can only comment on lenses I’ve used or know of. In the Leica world the Leica SL series lenses are said to be the best performers vs M lenses. Their larger size means less optical limitations when it comes to designing the lens. For Leica M lenses the faster lenses are said to be 1 stop sharper at any given aperture so for example the Leica Elmarit 28mm f2.8 at f4 can match the performance of the Leica Summicron 28mm f2 v2 at f2.8 or the Leica Summilux 28mm f1.4 at f2. Roughly speaking.

As I enjoy cameras and lenses from other brands too here is me doing some side by side testing of the lenses I own. I used to use Nikon DSLR cameras and I still enjoy Nikon SLR cameras.

Best 28mm Leica camera setup?

If you can’t afford the high price tag of the Leica Summilux 28mm f1.4 ASPH M lens, the smart money buys a Leica Q or Leica Q2 instead. Without sounding like a broken record, if I start doing more weddings I will seriously consider a Q/Q2. A fast 28mm lens is perfect for low light indoor wedding work but for travel and street photography too. These cameras are popular for good reason.

Lastly, if you love the 28mm focal length but are not sure what’s the best film camera to use with a lens, this video might give you some food for thought.

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Newsletter – May 2022

Free Monthly Newsletter!

Hi friends! Here is the new monthly MrLeica.com newsletter – A summary of posts you may have missed, upcoming events, useful information and anything else I can think of!

Jupiter-8 B&W Portrait
Flickr Model Photo of the Month – Pheobe (Most Liked)

Features

  • Recap from April
  • New Updates
  • YouTube Videos from April
  • New Blog Posts
  • UK Workshops
  • Overseas Workshops
  • Patreon, Zoom Calls & More
  • May 2022 – Coming up!

Recap from April

April came and went in a blink! Sorry still no new Leica M9 presets and no new blog posts but I did get to Poland and Spain to make new content.

April Was Costly!

I flew out to the Alicante region of Spain to plan future photography workshops in collaboration with escapar.cc cycling retreat. It was great to meet David in person but I had no idea it would cost me money once I got home!

Normally I’m reasonably safe against photography GAS as I have most of what I think I need and often don’t lust after the latest camera models. We wanted small cameras to cycle with so David asked if I’d like to try a Micro Four Thirds camera. I thought the little Olympus E-P5 ‘toy’ looking camera might be fun to try so I used it a long side my compact Leica CL camera. I was shocked by the resulting photos!  (See “Pana-Leica” video below).

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New Photography Kit

After my trip to Spain I bought that new awesome tripod I discovered and a few other cool bits. See my latest kit list at https://mrleica.com/kitlist/

Group Photowalk Workshop Interest

Following the announcement of my new group workshops in the April newsletter, I’ve received interest for the UK, Poland, America (NYC), Spain, and more. Join the new workshop mailing list to receive direct emails with workshops dates for the regions you are interested in.

Wedding Season

As the weather starts to improve in the UK I received another new booking for this year so I now have one wedding a month all summer I think. My first wedding for 2022 is in May so i’ll be sure to share a sample and some feedback! It’s going to be a fun one as the couple have requested digital photos, film photos and video! (I’ll do a Patreon what’s in my bag video!) Check out my separate wedding blog and a wedding instagram for more images/ info!

April 2022 YouTube Videos Catch-up:

Below is a catch up of all the YouTube videos I published last month:

The imperfect Jupiter-12 35mm f5.6 LTM lens

Some copies are good, some are “lemons”. Both will make for creative photos!

Looking for a bomb proof Leica camera? Look no further!

Leica cameras that can be banged, dropped, knocked but just keep working

Treat your LTM camera to the new Voigtlander 40mm Heliar lens

Voigtlander answer our wishes with a new screw mount lens! (also in M mount)

How good is the Leica SL2-S? Time to upgrade?

Comparing the latest Leica SL2-S vs my original Leica SL

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Love the Leica Q and 28mm view but want something smaller?

No not an iPhone but pairing the light and compact Leica CL + 18mm Elmarit

Pana-Leica lens vs real Leica lens. The winner is??

Testing the Leica Summilux 15mm f1.7 vs Leica Elmarit 18mm f2.8

Compact digital cameras for travel

Leica CL vs 6 cheaper alternatives! Sony, Fuji, Lumix, Ricoh..

New Blog Posts in April

None for April but I have already posted one in May!). Written posts supplement my YouTube review videos including full res images. There are 300+ existing blog post articles so feel free to browse the back catalogue!

Model Workshop Dates and Updates

Workshop dates – If you a looking to kick start your photography for 2022 you are welcome to join me for one of my 1:1 workshops. There are limited places so I offer on a first come basis. For notification and dates of future workshops and photowalks in your area join my workshop mailing list.

  • June 2022 – London 1:1 – 1 Space + Overseas workshops (TBC)
  • July 2022 – London 1:1 – 1 Space + Overseas workshops (TBC)

See workshop prices and testimonials on the blog

Voigtlander 50mm APO Portrait
London Model 1-2-1 Workshop – April 2022
New Workshops for Spring 2022!

Discounted UK workshops (Birmingham) – full day UK workshops for only £399.99 (£50 off) or half day for £249.99 (£30 off)

Poland – Gdansk, Bydgoszcz, Warsaw. (Same price as London workshops)*

> Hungary workshops – Budapest. (Same price as London workshops)*

Spain – Valencia-Alicante region. Multi-day, More info coming soon!

US – New York. I will trying to plan a visit perhaps later in 2022.

Your countries – Want me to fly to your city? Get in touch!

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Travel Updates

Flights are booked for Spain again in May (this time with a model) and i’m looking to book some European trips for June and July. (Probably Poland and perhaps Budapest, TBC). I will send emails with dates via the mailing list.

Unedited Fomapan 100 Scan

> April Travel (Gdansk, Poland) – Back to Poland to shoot with a few regulars. Lots of cancellations this time sadly so less models than planned but I was testing lenses and recording YouTube videos instead.

> April Travel (Alicante region, Spain) – My first time in this part of Spain and first visit to the country for many years. This was a trip to visit David at escapar.cc and their beautiful cycling retreat/ villa close to the old town of Ontinyent. See some of the above linked YouTube videos to see some clips of the region and a full blog post to follow once I’ve developed the film. We will be running week long small group photography workshops from the villa with the option of cycling or non-cycling so to cater for everyone. Please get in touch for more details*

Leica Elmar 5cm f3.5
Sample from Gdansk trip – Natalie

– Join Patreon to watch fun behind the scenes videos overseas!

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May 2022 – Coming Up

I have a backlog of part recorded YouTube videos with completed lens testing. Now I need to find time to put them together for you guys! Content still to come from Poland, Budapest, Spain, Portugal and more (and then I need to develop all my film, colour and B&W).

YouTube video – spotlight (1 of the videos coming soon!)

I promised the Contax T2 film camera for April but I failed. It’s on the list so I will try to share in it May! The new video I can announce for the May newsletter is the new 7Artisans 28mm f5.6 lens. Testing already complete so coming soon! Subscribe to the YouTube channel and turn on your notifications so not to miss it (and have a chance of winning my monthly giveaway!)

Leica CL + 18mm TL
Flickr Non-Model Photo of the Month – (Most Liked)

First Time Reader? Additional Info Below

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London Leica Workshop 2021

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New York Workshop

Some advantages of meeting you in your city include (1) you don’t need to travel (2) I will give you model contacts in your city that you can keep in touch with after I leave. This has worked well for photographers in the past. The flipside of that is, if you rather come to the UK for a London workshop you have the excuse for a holiday!

Model Photography Workshop
Zurich Photography Workshop
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Sigma Lenses For Leica

Sigma Lenses For Leica

Looking at Sigma lenses for Leica cameras. Specifically L mount lenses from Sigma. This article gives an overview on what Sigma offers to Leica users and does a deep dive on two lenses for YouTube . Sigma 24mm f2 DG DN and Sigma Art 50mm f1.4.

Does Sigma make Leica lenses?

Yes! Sigma is part of the “L-Mount Alliance” along with Panasonic and Leica so Sigma makes lenses for Leica cameras that have the Leica L mount. Full frame cameras like the Leica SL, Leica SL2 and Leica SL2-S and crop sensor cameras like the Leica CL.

Sigma 24mm f2 + Leica CL

What is Sigma L mount?

L mount Sigma lenses are autofocus lenses, both primes and zooms and offer a cheaper alternative to Leica SL lenses. Sigma L mount is the same as Leica L mount or Panasonic L mount.

Both! Sigma APS-C lenses + Sigma full frame lenses

Both crop sensor and full frame lenses are available from Sigma in L mount. Sigma DC DN lenses are for APS-C cameras such as the Leica CL. Sigma DG DN lenses are designed for full frame cameras but can be used on APS-C camera bodies too. Full frame lenses tend to be larger and heavier than a crop sensor equivalent lens.

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Are Sigma lenses bad?

It depends who you ask! I think historically the build quality especially was said to be worse than other third party brands. In my first 10 years of photography I avoided Sigma but shot with brands like Tamron and Tokina quite happily (on Nikon cameras). Sigma even collaborated with Leica with some of the Leica R lenses and these are much cheaper than Leica designed optics. A common example is the Leica R 28-70mm f3.5-4.5zoom lens made in collaboration with Sigma. That is much cheaper than the Leica designed version that I use –

In recent years the build quality of Sigma lenses seems to have vastly improved. The new Sigma Art lenses and Sigma Contemporary lenses are metal and glass (mostly) and feel very smooth and well made from my testing (see below).

Sigma Contemporary vs Sigma Art lenses

Generally speaking Sigma Art lenses are big and Sigma Contemporary lenses are more compact. Sigma Art lenses tend to offer a faster maximum aperture whereas Contemporary lenses mostly start at f2 or f2.8 lenses. Sigma Contemporary lenses offer the best middle ground for me, both compact yet fast enough for most types of photography.

Leica SL + Sigma 24mm f2 DG DN

Sigma lenses for the Leica CL

The Leica CL is L mount even though I normally use it with small M mount lenses via an adapter. The Sigma Art lenses are too big and heavy to use on this compact APS-C body but they will work if you pair them together. Sigma Contemporary DG DN full frame lenses are more compact and pair better to the small CL body. The best option is to use the Sigma DC DN crop sensor lenses on the CL. Sigma DC DN lenses are the smallest and lightest solution but if you then use them on full frame cameras the camera will only work in APS-C mode at half resolution.

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Leica CL + Sigma 24mm f2 DG DN lens

On my recent photography trip to Poland I used the Leica CL with the new Sigma 24mm f2.8 DG DN lens. With the 1.5x APS-C crop factor this gave me a 36mm autofocus lens equivalent. Here are some sample photos with this combination. All photos are RAW files plus my MrLeica Leica SL preset pack applied.

*If you’d like to join me for a photowalk I’m now running small group workshops. You can register your interest via my Mailing List to be notified of future events in your city.

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Portraits with the Leica CL

24mm is often too wide for portraits but with the crop factor of the Leica CL camera it was less difficult. Photos below are 36mm lens equivalent portraits. All photos are RAW files plus the MrLeica Leica SL preset pack applied.

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Leica SL + Sigma 24mm f2 DG DN

As the Leica SL is a full frame camera I could enjoy the full 24mm focal length for photowalks in Poland. I really enjoy 24mm – 25mm lenses for travel photography and I can capture most of what my eyes are seeing. All photos are RAW files plus my MrLeica Leica SL preset pack applied.

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24mm portraits with the Leica SL

As a portrait photographer I was keen to try some portrait photography with this setup even if most of my model photography is shot with 50mm or often 90mm.

(See the Voigtlander Heliar 50mm f1.5 lens and Voigtlander APO-Skopar 90mm f2.8 lens posts to see photos with the same models using longer lenses).

Panasonic Lumix S5 + Sigma lenses

If you are a Pansonic Lumix S5 user (or any Lumix S camera) you can also enjoy the Sigma L mount lenses. I use my Lumix S5 for photography but moreso for video. The Pansonic Lumix S5 replaced my Lumix GH5 as my main YouTube camera.

Sigma 24mm f2 DG DN for video

The reason I discovered Sigma L mount lenses is because I was looking for a autofocus wide lens for vlogging. I find 28mm a little too tight so 24mm seemed perfect. It does a great job but I realised I tend to shoot static position video so longer lenses with a fast aperture are probably better suited.

24mm Sigma lens for Leica

Full review from Poland testing the 24mm Sigma DG DN lens on the Leica SL and Leica CL cameras.

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Sigma Art 50mm f1.4 lens for Leica

If you don’t mind big lenses the Sigma 50mm Art lens is optically a great performer for Leica L mount. See the full review with sample images on YouTube –

50mm Sigma Art lens portraits

Here are a few full res Sigma 50mm f1.4 Art lens portraits shot with Leica cameras. First photo (colour) captured with the APS-C Leica CL mirrorless camera. Second photo (B&W) shot with the full frame Leica SL camera. Both images are RAW files plus the MrLeica Leica SL preset pack applied.

Leica CL + Sigma Art 50mm f1.4

Leica SL + Sigma Art 50mm f1.4

Are Sigma lenses worth it?

So in summary, do I think Sigma lenses are worth it? (Verses all the other lens brand lenses I use on Leica cameras). Yes if you like the sharp modern look and yes if you want to have autofocus. They offer Leica L mount users a much cheaper alternative to Leica SL lenses. For me, Sigma is doing a great job with their new compact affordable DG DN lenses. Smaller size is important to me so I have no interest in the large fast Sigma Art lenses, even if they can make nice photos.

Other Sigma lenses for L mount

In this mini review I only covered one Sigma Art lens and one Sigma Contemporary lens. To see all the Sigma lenses available visit –https://www.sigma-imaging-uk.com/lenses/

Affordable Sigma lens for Leica

Sigma offer something for everyone and at an affordable price, especially if buying used. If I was looking to buy lenses for the Leica CL I would consider the Sigma 30mm f1.4 DC DN and the compact 56mm f1.4 DC DN. For the Leica SL and Lumix S5 I like the compact 45mm f2.8 DG DN lens plus the 65mm f2 DG DN which should be great for portraits. To summarise, you can chose from Sigma Art fast prime lenses, the smaller compact slower (many are f2) Sigma Contemporary lenses and APS-C lenses for cameras like the Leica CL and TL.

Leica CL + Sigma DG DN 24mm

Buying New and Used

New: Amazon etc –
Used: eBay –
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Sigma or Panasonic Lumix L Mount?

One question you may have is how do these Sigma lenses compare to L mount lenses from Panasonic Lumix? I’ve not tested any L mount Lumix primes but I recently had the chance to test a Pana-Leica prime lens (Lumix lens with Leica badge on). I was really impressed! I also own the Lumix 20-60mm kit zoom and it’s sharp and offers a less common wider zoom range.

Leica CL + Sigma 24mm f2 DG DN Portrait

More Info

> New! Workshops/ Photowalks Mailing List – Sign up to receive info on future events specific to your city/ country/ interest.

> Zoom Consultations – Not sure what camera or lens to buy? Book a 1:1 Zoom call and I can answer your questions and give pros and cons of similar products.

> YouTube Monthly GiveawaysSubscribe to the YouTube channel for a chance to win! Monthly giveaways – £30/$40+ of Patreon & Zoom call access and higher value items such as lenses.

> More Content? Join Patreon (Instant Access!) – Access 200+ exclusive posts including 100+ videos. Two group Zoom calls a month, a friendly private Facebook group and lots of tips and tricks. *Sign up to Patreon for 12 months and get 10% off!

> Recommended Photography Gear? MyKit – Links to current photography equipment that I use and can recommend.

> Free YouTube Search Tool Sign up to the blog newsletter to get a free copy of my YouTube video search tool. No more struggling to find a videos. Search through my 200+ videos by lens manufacturer, lens mount, focal length, film format and other filters.

LEICA. LENSES. CAMERAS. WORKSHOP. WEDDING. PRESETS. FILM
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Newsletter – April 2022

Free Monthly Newsletter!

Hi friends! Here is the new monthly MrLeica.com newsletter – A summary of posts you may have missed, upcoming events, useful information and anything else I can think of!

TTArtisan 50mm f0.95
Flickr Model Photo of the Month – Amy (Most Liked)

Features

  • Recap from March
  • New Updates
  • YouTube Videos from March
  • New Blog Posts
  • UK Workshops
  • Overseas Workshops
  • Patreon, Zoom Calls & More
  • April 2022 – Coming up!

Recap from March

Days are getting longer, brighter and warmer so I’m already happy! Sorry that the newsletter is late coming out, I was away doing photos in Poland and didn’t get chance to prep it before leaving.

I enjoyed cheap flights to both Budapest and Warsaw in March. I’m now shooting more film than I have time to develop and building up quite a catalogue of behind the scenes videos (“BTS”) for both Patreon and short clips for YouTube. Good times and lots of new content to come!

New blog posts coming soon

With travelling twice in a month it means I am still behind with the writing new blog posts. Starting from April 2022 that will change so new articles coming soon!  Sign up  to the blog for free so not to miss these future posts!

My 1:1 Zoom calls are often like buses. None for a few days then suddenly 3 in one evening! I help people with everything from Leica, buying lenses, lighting, film developing and even photo reviews. Get in touch!  https://mrleica.com/zoom/

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Photography gear I use and recommend

People often ask me about my lights and the various cameras, lenses, photography equipment I use. See a full list at https://mrleica.com/kitlist/

NEW! Photography E-Book and Courses

I did a poll a few months ago on YouTube asking you guys what you’d prefer from me in terms of printed books, online courses, e-books and the like (for those than can’t attend face to face workshops). e-books were the number one choice so I will set to work on writing my first book to be released this year. The topic will be everything I can tell you about model photography after 10+ years of non-stop practicing! I may then do supplementary online courses to provide live demonstrations for the topics covered in the book. Sign up  to the blog to keep track of my progress and to take advantage of the pre-release discounted price closer to the date.

NEW! Group Photowalk Workshops

Some of you may know that I’ve been teaching photography workshops since 2014 and all of those have been on a 1-2-1 basis except the first few.   

During my last 2 overseas city breaks I’ve really enjoyed walking around looking for photos (as I wasn’t booked up with models morning until night).  I thought perhaps this is something I can share/ teach to small groups.  What I see and what I look for when taking these photographs.  I don’t offer group workshops for model photography as I try to protect the model and think 3 of us is a nice number to get good results (Me, model + 1 student).  

For walking around photos though I think 3 photographers + me can be the perfect size.  Everyone will have the opportunity to ask me all they want to know on the day and offering group session means I can drop the price so that I’m more accessible to more people.

From April onwards, I will start with offering these new photowalk workshops in cities I will be in (such as Gdansk, Warsaw, Budapest) + London (and I can do Birmingham too if requested). Going forward I can teach wherever there is a demand so ask your photographer friends and I can travel to meet you.


Photowalk Workshops include:
  • 3 spaces available per day
  • £250 per person
  • Full day, meet in the morning, walk around a lot, light lunch, more photos, and debrief/ optional photo review at the end
  • You’re welcome to shoot film and digital, any brand (not limited to Leica)
  • You have the option to test 1 of my digital cameras (If I can carry!)
  • You have the chance to try one of my lenses (limited to what I can carry!)
  • I can explain about using a rangefinder camera,  zone focusing, film cameras
  • Topics include composition, looking for light, lens choice, framing..
  • Colour vs. black and white and using filters (for film users especially)
  • Using different camera settings to get different results from the same location

*It will be a photowalk rather than pure street photography with more focus on light, composition, and exposure than photographing the homeless guy on the bench. Being in cities there will be people to photograph so we can include street photos.

*The format is not set in stone so I’m happy to work with you to create something that adds the most value to the group.

There has already been interest for a London photowalk. Please join the new mailing list (NEW!) for future photowalk dates/ communications. Places will be offered on a first come basis (all countries).

NEW! Meetup Mailing List

I often find myself in a city with a free day (usually after models cancel!) or if I book a last minute trip. So that I can contact those of you specifically interested in meeting me for Photowalks or Workshops (and potentially at short notice) please join the new mailing list. *This is specifically for these communications and you won’t be spammed with anything else. I will send you emails with dates relating to your mentioned city/ cities of interest and a generic monthly email with all planned event dates.

March 2022 YouTube Videos Catch-up:

Below is a catch up of all the YouTube videos I published last month:

Ready to upgrade to Medium Format? 11 ways to shoot 6×45

35mm film negatives from Leica are nice but sometimes you want more detail

Best 35mm Portrait Lens? For me it’s the Voigtlander 35mm 1.2

Model portraits with the Voigtlander Nokton 35mm f1.2 III (latest version)

7Artisans 35mm 1.4 Smashes Voigtlander 35mm 1.4?

The results from this video were a surprise! 7Artisans offer an affordable 35mm

Is this the Leica Noctilux Killer? TTArtisan 50mm f0.95

Brilliant lens for portraits, especially on mirrorless cameras, I’m a big fan!

Need a 50mm with more character? Classic 50mm f1.5 Lenses

Zeiss vs Leica – Vintage lens shootout and compared to the best modern M glass

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New Blog Posts in March

None for March, sorry. Written posts supplement the YouTube review videos including full res images to pixel peep on. There are 300+ existing blog post articles so feel free to browse the back catalogue!

Model Workshop Dates and Updates

Workshop dates – If you a looking to kick start your photography for 2022 you are welcome to join me for one of my 1:1 workshops. There are limited places so I offer on a first come basis. For up to date notification of all future workshops and photowalks please join the new mailing list. I might be in your city with a day free so I will send emails to all those on the mailing list.

  • April 2022 – London 1:1 – 1 Space remaining
  • May 2022 – London 1:1 – 1 Space remaining + Paris – 1 Space (TBC)
  • June 2022 – London 1:1 – 2 Spaces + Overseas workshops (TBC)

See workshop prices and testimonials on the blog

Leica Workshop UK
Leica workshop in the UK – February 2022
New Workshops for Spring 2022!

Discounted UK workshops (Birmingham) – I’m now happy to offer full day UK workshops for only £399.99 (£50 off) and half day workshops for £249.99 (£30 off) in the city of Birmingham. This is closer to home for me so I pass on the cost saving to you.

Poland workshops – NEW!! Now available on request in Gdansk, Bydgoszcz, Warsaw. (Same price as my London workshops)*

> Hungary workshops – NEW!! Budapest. (Same price as London workshops)*

Spain workshops – NEW!! Organised 7 day trips to the Valencia-Alicante region of Spain. More information coming soon!

US workshops – I have at least 3+ photographers in the New York area of the US that are interested in workshops so I will look at trying to plan a visit perhaps late summer/ September time.

Other countries – If you want me to fly to your city to run a Leica workshop/ model photography workshop please get in touch.

Leica Workshop Poland
Poland workshop – February 2022
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Travel Updates

Flights already booked for Gdansk and Alicante (Spain) for April and Paris (France) and Bydgoszcz (Poland) are looking probable for May. I’m happy to teach in any of these cities so feel free to get in touch!

Unedited Fomapan 100 Scan

> March Travel (Budapest, Hungary) – Great catching up with model friends and I love the city for photos. Some film photos to come in future YouTube videos.

> March Travel (Warsaw, Poland) – My first time in the city and I’m a huge fan! I will be going back with more cameras! Again, sample photos to follow in future YouTube videos.

– Join Patreon to watch fun behind the scenes videos overseas!

TTArtisan 28mm f5.6 Portrait
Sample from Budapest trip – Mimi
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April 2022 – Coming Up

I still want to share my thoughts on the Leica SL, CL and M cameras plus include the Lumix S5. I need to do more geeky comparison testing before I can share the results. After sharing multiple modern lens reviews recently I plan to review some of the forgotten gem lenses from yesteryear that often have more interesting rendering than modern optics. I plan to be shooting a lot more film over the spring/ summer so I can include example photos on film and digital.

YouTube video – spotlight (1 of the videos coming soon!)

One video coming in April is a review of the amazing Contax T2 film camera. I’m waiting for my colour film to be developed at the lab and then I can get onto it. Subscribe to the YouTube channel and turn on your notifications so not to miss it (and have a chance of winning my monthly giveaway!)

Zeiss by Zeiss (SWC/M)
Flickr Non-Model Photo of the Month – (Most Liked)

First Time Reader? Additional Info Below

> UK Workshops

I teach basic to advanced level photography to anyone with a camera. For full details see workshop prices and testimonials + join the mailing list for dates.

Model Photography Workshop - London
London Leica Workshop 2021

> Overseas Workshops

Happy to travel worldwide to run photography workshops. See above for some of the planned countries and join the mailing list to submit your interest.

Hasselblad 60mm Portrait
New York Workshop

Some advantages of meeting you in your city include (1) you don’t need to travel (2) I will give you model contacts in your city that you can keep in touch with after I leave. This has worked well for photographers in the past. The flipside of that is, if you rather come to the UK for a London workshop you have the excuse for a holiday!

Model Photography Workshop
Zurich Photography Workshop
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> More Content? Join Patreon!

Instant access to 200+ exclusive posts including 100+ videos. For 2022 you can now enjoy 2 extended group calls a month (1 hour each!). Join our small friendly private Facebook group to share your work and interact.

£3+ Tier members – Dial in for live Q&A. Often a slightly larger group.

£5+ Tier members – Dial in for our interactive group chat on all things photography. Learn from each other and even request to take the stage and present to the group. A smaller group so you get more opportunities to speak.

OFFER* You can now sign up to Patreon for 12 months and get 10% off!

Zoom Consultations

Not sure what camera or lens to buy or need help? Book a 1:1 Zoom call and I can answer your questions and give pros and cons of similar products.

YouTube Monthly Giveaways

Subscribe to the YouTube channel for a chance to win! Monthly giveaways – £30/$40+ of Patreon & Zoom call access and higher value items such as lenses.

> Free YouTube Search Tool

Sign up to the blog newsletter to get a free copy of my YouTube video search tool. No more struggling to find a videos. Search through my 200+ videos by lens manufacturer, lens mount, focal length, film format and other filters.

LEICALENSESCAMERASWORKSHOPWEDDINGPRESETSFILM

Newsletter – March 2022

Free Monthly Newsletter!

Hi friends! Here is the new monthly MrLeica.com newsletter – A summary of posts you may have missed, upcoming events, useful information and anything else I can think of!

Testing the Voigtlander Nokton 50mm f1
Flickr Model Photo of the Month (Natalia) (Most Liked)

Features

  • Recap from February
  • YouTube Videos from February
  • New Blog Posts
  • UK Workshops
  • Overseas Workshops
  • Patreon – Zoom Calls & More
  • March 2022 – Coming up!

Recap from February

Another month passes by in a blur!  Highlights of the month included travelling back to Gdansk for more model photoshoots and teaching my first photography workshop in Poland (See more below). 

Also with me starting to travel again this is great both for my photography and YouTube but also for making more behind the scenes videos (“BTS”) for Patreon.

I also had the opportunity to test the new Voigtlander 50mm f1.0 Nokton lens against the existing Nokton 50mm f1.2 lens and run a UK Leica workshop closer to home (see below).

The nicest surprise in February was to receive a big parcel from one of my Patreons, Richard, in the US, containing two beautiful Contax cameras and a pile of film (see them in my Contax video).  Thanks again Richard! 

YouTube videos slowly improving?

After now posting 230 YouTube videos I might be getting better. This is very much open to debate, but I perhaps made my best YouTube video to date. Maybe not in terms of most information shared but perhaps the most “mainstream” in terms of more on location behind the scenes footage and multiple camera angles (tracking camera footage). If you missed it see the Voigtlander 50mm f1.0 Part 2 video below.

Model Photos Me!  (As seen on YouTube!)
Me working hard in Poland with the Voigtlander 50mm f1.0
New blog posts delayed

I have fallen behind again with sharing new blog post reviews so apologies for that.  I have made some big changes that will take effect from 1st April 2022. This will give me more time to focus on YouTube and the blog so I hope to get back on track in the coming months. (There are 5+ half written articles that I started but are not yet complete). Sign up  to the blog for free so not to miss these future posts!

The 1:1 Zoom calls continued through February with 3 calls to 3 countries back to back one evening. Topics I help with in additional to Leica include vintage cameras and lenses, modern Voigtlander lenses, camera A vs B, portrait lighting, film developing and photo reviews – https://mrleica.com/zoom/

Photography equipment I use and recommend

If you saw my Voigtlander 50mm f1 part 2 video I show some of the lights I was using in Poland. See my full equipment list at https://mrleica.com/kitlist/.

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February 2022 YouTube Videos Catch-up:

Below is a catch up of all the YouTube videos I published last month:

Leica L Mount Sigma 50mm f1.4 Art lens

If you want to look “professional” (smile) using a big fast lens then definitely consider the Sigma Art 50mm! It’s oversized but optically very good.

Best light meter for photography?

Considering 8 ways to meter your exposure for photography!

£50 Leica!? .. not quite but the vintage Zorki is similar

Want to experience the Leica rangefinder photography on a budget? Try this!

Voigtlander Nokton 50mm f1 model photography + vs 50mm 1.2

See me real world testing the new fast glass as part of my model portrait work

CONTAX cameras compared including the T2, RS & IIIA

An introduction to 35mm Contax film cameras and their Carl Zeiss lenses

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New Blog Posts in February

No new published articles in February but multiple reviews part completed and in the pipeline. These written posts often supplement the YouTube videos where I share more photos (and some at full resolution) for the equipment I am testing. (To receive these reviews straight to you inbox you can sign up to the free newsletter).

Workshop Dates and Updates

> Workshop dates – If you a looking to kick start your photography for 2022 you are welcome to join me for one of my 1:1 workshops. There are limited places so I offer on a first come basis:

  • March 2022 – Warsaw Poland 1:1 workshop – 1 Space available
  • April 2022 – London 1:1 – 1 Space remaining / Gdansk Poland – 1 Space remaining
  • May 2022 – London 1:1 – 1 Space remaining

See workshop prices and testimonials on the blog

Leica Workshop UK
Leica workshop in the UK – February 2022
NEW WORKSHOPS FOR MARCH 2022!!

> Discounted UK workshops (Birmingham) – I’m now happy to offer full day UK workshops for only £399.99 (£50 off) and half day workshops for £249.99 (£30 off) in the city of Birmingham. This is closer to home for me so I pass on the cost saving to you.

> Germany workshops – I had hoped to run workshops in Germany but travel from the UK is a lot less easy than planned. Instead, for the near term those photographers now plan to meet me in Poland instead where they get the opportunity to work with some of my favourite models.

> Poland workshops – NEW!! Now available on request in Gdansk, Bydgoszcz and Warsaw workshops. (Same price as my London workshops)*

> Spain workshops – NEW!! Organised 7 day trips to the Valencia-Alicante region of Spain. More information to come next month.

> US workshops – I have at least 3+ photographers in the New York area of the US that are interested in workshops so I will look at trying to plan a visit perhaps late summer/ September time.

> Other countries – If you want me to fly to your city to run a Leica workshop/ model photography workshop please get in touch.

Leica Workshop Poland
Poland workshop – February 2022

Travel Updates

Things are starting to get even busier from March 2022 with flights booked to Budapest (Hungary), Gdansk and Warsaw (Poland) and close to Alicante (Spain). I am also looking at Amsterdam (Netherlands) and Paris (France). I’m happy to teach in any of these cities so feel free to get in touch!

Unedited Fomapan 100 Scan

> February Travel (Gdansk, Poland) – 9 models in just over 3 days. I booked myself up, back to back, morning til night. Great to see some familiar faces from the past and meet some new people too. Minimal cancellations and a big thanks to the 9 girls that showed up and gave it there 110%. Join Patreon to watch some of the fun behind the scenes videos with the girls.

Voigtlander Nokton 50mm f1.2
Sample from Poland trip + 2nd most liked photo of the month – Katia
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Patreon + Two 1 hour group Zoom calls/ month

For 2022 you can now enjoy 2 extended group calls a month (1 hour each!)

£3+ Tier members – Dial in for a live Q&A with me (or whatever else we decide to do). Often a slightly larger group.

£5+ Tier members – Dial in for our interactive group chat on all things photography. Learn from each other and even request to take the stage and present to the group. Usually a smaller group so you get more opportunities to speak. Join our private Facebook group and get involved!

March 2022 – Coming Up

Reviews still to follow for the TTArtisan 50mm f0.95 and two 35mm lenses including the 7Artisans 35mm f1.4 Leica M mount lens I promised. I also want to review more of my vintage lenses and film cameras so I’ve booked a few cheap trips to give me an excuse to test those. There are still some great flight price deals if you shop around. I also have the Contax T2 and Contax RS cameras to test AND I still have the Leica SL-CL-M & Lumix S5 comparisons to do.

YouTube video – spotlight (1 of the videos coming soon!)

I definitely want to share my thoughts on the TTArtisan 50mm f0.95 asap as a cheaper alternative to the new Voigtlander Nokton 50mm f1.0. Subscribe to the YouTube channel (if not already done so) and turn on your notifications so not to miss the mentioned videos (and have a chance of winning my monthly giveaway!)

Kiev 4a Photography
Flickr Non-Model Photo of the Month – (Most Liked)

First Time Reader? Additional Info Below

> UK Workshops

I teach basic to advanced level photography to anyone with a camera. For full details see the workshop prices and testimonials.

Model Photography Workshop - London
London Leica Workshop 2021

> Overseas Workshops

Happy to travel worldwide to run photography workshops. See above for some of the planned countries and contact me if you’d like me to come to your city.

Hasselblad 60mm Portrait
New York Workshop

Some advantages of meeting you in your city include (1) you don’t need to travel (2) I will give you model contacts in your city that you can keep in touch with after I leave. This has worked well for photographers in the past. The flipside of that is, if you rather come to the UK for a London workshop you have the excuse for a holiday!

Model Photography Workshop
Zurich Photography Workshop
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> More Content? Join Patreon!

Instant access to 200+ exclusive posts including 100+ videos. Two 1-hour group Zoom calls a month, a friendly private Facebook group and lots of tips and tricks. 

*Sign up to Patreon for 12 months and get 10% off!

Zoom Consultations

Not sure what camera or lens to buy or need help? Book a 1:1 Zoom call and I can answer your questions and give pros and cons of similar products.

YouTube Monthly Giveaways

Subscribe to the YouTube channel for a chance to win! Monthly giveaways – £30/$40+ of Patreon & Zoom call access and higher value items such as lenses.

> Free YouTube Search Tool

Sign up to the blog newsletter to get a free copy of my YouTube video search tool. No more struggling to find a videos. Search through my 200+ videos by lens manufacturer, lens mount, focal length, film format and other filters.

LEICA. LENSES. CAMERAS. WORKSHOP. WEDDING. PRESETS. FILM