Lomography.com – Petzval 85 Art

Lomography.com – Petzval 85 Art

Matthew Osborne Photography/ @MrLeicaCom

September 2016

 

Petzval 85 Art Lens – Nikon F Mount

The lovely people at Lomography.com kindly got in touch and lent me their Nikon mount brass Petzval 85 Art lens to try.  Below is a link describing how I got on and here are some example images with Sophie and Charlotte (also included in link).  All photos taken with my old Nikon D800.

..I have to say, the Petzval 85 Art makes Nikon D800 photos interesting so it’s good! (I say that as I struggled to get excited with my Nikon D800 photos on the whole hence my move to film and Leicas).

Petzval 85 Art

Sophie
Nikon D800 + Petzval 85
Petzval 85 Art
Nikon D800 + Petzval 85 Art Lens Brass
Petzval Bokeh
Nikon D800 + Petzval 85
Nikon D800 + Petzval 85 Art

Charlotte
Petzval 85
Petzval 85 Art Lens
Nikon D800 + Petzval 85
New Petzval 85 Art Lens Brass

Lomography.com Magazine – MrLeica.com

Link – https://www.lomography.com/magazine/323494-matt-osbourne-portraits-with-the-petzval-85

Petzval 85 vs. Other Nikon Mount Fast Lenses

When using the Petzval 85 lens it reminded me of the overly soft photos captured from my Nikkor 50mm f1.2 Ai-s lens when shooting at f1.2. Here are a few examples as a comparison. I think the Petzval 85 is sharper wide open at f2.2 and has ‘better’ bokeh (meaning more character).

Nikkor 50mm f1.2 Ai-s

Nikon D800 Headshot
Alice with Nikkor 50/1.2 AIS
Katie SOOC with 50/1.2 AIS @f1.2

I then thought perhaps the Samyang 85mm f1.4 would be more comparable so here are a few samples. The Samyang 85 is pretty sharp wide open at f1.4 and a great lens but I think again the Petzval 85 lens bokeh has more character.

Samyang 85mm f1.4

Innocence?
2012 REPOST: Nikon D800 + Samyang 85mm f1.4 Fashion
Harriett
Nikon FM

Petzval 85 vs. Leica M Fast Lenses

Finally, as a Leica photographer it seems only right to include a few example photos with fast Leica lenses that are also soft(ish) focus shot wide open.  The obvious lenses that spring to mind that I own are the Leica Noctilux 50mm f1 and Leica Summarit 50mm f1.5.

Leica Noctilux 50mm f1.0 v2

Leica M9 Skin Tones
Leica M9 + Noctilux
Leica M9 + Noctilux
Leica M Typ 240 + Noctilux
Leica Noctilux Bokeh

Leica Summarit 50mm f1.5

Leica Summarit 50mm f1.5
Street Portrait
Leica Summarit 50mm f1.5
Retro Leica

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Amateur Photographer Magazine – Vintage Legacy

Amateur Photographer Magazine – Vintage Legacy – 23 April 2016

Matthew Osborne Photography / @MrLeicaCom

May 2016

Katie with CZ Pancolar 80/1.8

Amateur Photographer Magazine

Vintage lenses on modern cameras

I wrote a six page article for the UK Amateur Photographer Magazine (23 April 2016 issue) on using old “legacy” lenses on modern DSLR and mirrorless cameras.  (*This does not include rangefinder cameras without Live View such as the Leica M8 and Leica M9).

Rather than repeat myself I have linked the full article below.

Harriett with Pancolar 80/1.8 SOOC

The images used for the article are quite old as they date back to my pre-Leica days when I was using a Nikon D800 DSLR, 2012-2013 mostly I think.

Here is a more recent photo using the same equipment with Stacey

Carl Zeiss Jena Pancolar 80mm f1.8

Freelensing

The article also describes a photography technique which was my norm before I moved to Leica cameras and that was “Freelensing”.  I have written an article on this in the past so I have linked it below for perhaps better image examples.

Hasselblad Lens Freelensing

Old habits die hard

Shortly after the article was published I was explaining to model Elle how freelensing works.  As a result here is freelensing image from a few weeks ago before I went to Poland.

Freelensing

Freelensing on film

Finally, here are a few freelensing photos closer to my heart.  They are all shot on film cameras with model Tegan.  (My apologies for the grain!  It was expired film).

Expired 120 Ilford Delta 400

Vega 28 + Mamiya 645 Super

Ilford Delta 400 Film

 

Magazine Article – Full

Amateur Photographer Magazine – Vintage Legacy – 23 April 2016

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Amateur Photographer Magazine 2014 – Freelensing

Poland Model Photography – June 2015

Poland Model Photography – June 2015

Matthew Osborne Photography (“Mr Leica”)

Mr Leica Agency Shoot Poland

The Trip

I am just back from another 4 days shooting in Sopot, Poland.  I stayed in my favourite hotel on Sopot beach, Hotel Bursztyn, and teamed up with Malva Model agency girls again and also with models from 2 other model agencies.  Some new faces and a few you may recognise.  Some of the regulars were away shooting in Asia / elsewhere in Europe so I hope to catch them next time if they are home.

Packing!

As usual, the hardest part of the trip is packing beforehand trying to decide what cameras / lenses to take.  Right until the last minute the plan was to take my usual Leica M9, a Leica M3 and then take the Nikon F4 SLR to try.  I was then stuck with what Nikon mount lens(es) to take for the Nikon F4 as I needed a 50mm (do everything lens) but also wanted to take my new Tokina 100mm f2.8 lens.  I then started to consider taking the Nikon D800 instead of the Leica M9 as kind of a test to myself.  Can I like the photos from the Nikon D800 CMOS sensor again?  It has been over 18 months since I moved to from shooting with the Nikon D800 to the Leica M9 so perhaps it was time to give it another try.  The D800 made sense on multiple levels.  36mp high resolution images for the models and agencies to emjoy.  D800 longer battery life vs the Leica M9 for full days of shooting. D800 autofocus lens option if I want it for moving subjects and the biggest advantage, I could take one set of lenses for 2 camera bodies. After weighing my bag with various combinations the final camera bag consisted of:

Camera gear for June 2015 trip (2 cameras, 4 lenses)

  • Nikon D800 DSLR (digital camera)
  • Nikon F4 SLR (35mm film camera)
  • Nikkor 50mm f1.8 E series MF lens (pancake lens)
  • Nikkor 24mm f2.8 D AF lens (for some interior photos)(less so for models)
  • Rollei Planar 50mm f1.8 M42 MF lens (+ tiny M42 – Nikon adapter)
  • Tokina 100mm f2.8 AF Macro lens (for portraits and macros)
  • 5 in 1 reflector
  • 35mm film (Kodak T-Max 100, T-Max 400, Fuji Acros 100, Kentmere 100, Portra 400)

Nikon F4 + New Batteries :)

To recap this is what I took on my last trip to Poland (similar space and weight):

January 2015 Poland Trip camera gear (4 cameras, 4 lenses)

  • Leica M9 (digital camera)
  • Leica M3 film camera (with 50mm framelines)
  • Leica M2 film camera (with 35mm framelines)
  • Leica Summilux ASPH 50mm f1.4 lens (for M3)
  • Voigtlander Nokton Classic 35mm f1.4 lens (for M2)
  • Voigtlander Nokton Classic 40mm f1.4 lens (for M9)
  • Mamiya 645 Super + Mamiya Sekor 80mm f1.9 lens (medium format film camera)

Conclusion

Was I pleased with my camera and lens choice?

I think yes.  I still find it easier to focus a rangefinder cameras vs a SLR/DSLR but after reviewing some of the resulting photos I am extremely pleased with the detailed captured in the Nikon D800 NEF RAW files.  A broad dynamic range and lots of detail / sharpness.  Perfect for fashion photography and to my eyes more similar to the smooth Leica S2 camera images than the Leica M9 photos.  The Leica M9 images to me are more like classic 35mm film grain such as Kodak Tri-X whereas the Leica S2 and Nikon D800 is more like medium format 120 Fuji Acros 100 film (slightly extreme examples but to help visualise) for example with a broad range of grey tones.  Neither style is bad and both have their uses.  In the past I loved the narrow dynamic range of the contrasty Leica M9 black and white JPEG files yet at the moment I am really enjoying the broad dynamic range of film and the Nikon D800 RAW files.

I was pleased with both the Nikon D800 and handling of the Nikon F4 (film not yet developed).  Could I take the same images with a Leica M3 vs the Nikon F4 with the same film loaded and a 50mm lens?  Yes I think so.  The Leica M3 is smaller and lighter and I can operate it in my sleep.  The Nikon F4 was good if I wanted to use the autofocus Tokina 100mm f2.8 macro lens or the wider 24mm Nikkor but for the majority of the photoshoots I could have probably got away with just a 50mm lens.  Next time I might take a Nikkor 50mm AF lens for speed or perhaps the Nikkor 60mm f2.8D Micro lens instead of the 100mm Tokina Macro.  Both lenses are very sharp.

Could I take the same images (camera operating speaking) with the Leica M9 vs the Nikon D800?  Again I think yes but just with smaller files produced from the M9 and from 0.7m-1m away for Leica-M lenses vs up much closer with with Nikon D800.

Time to Think..

During the trip I had time to think more about Leica-M lenses vs lenses for Nikon cameras and also the limited useable max ISO of the Leica M9 vs the Nikon D800 ISO.  I will put a post together when I get chance.

For now here is the first digital sample images from the trip:

Fallen Angel

Nikon D800 Fashion Photography

Fun Between Poses

Model – Weronika @ Malva Models

Nikon D800 + Tokina 100mm f2.8 AF Macro / Nikkor 50mm f1.8 E Series

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Featured: MOTW – Galyna

Featured Model of the Week (“MOTW”) : Galyna

Matthew Osborne Photography – Model Photographer
This is a new feature to share some of my favourite model photography/ fashion and beauty images from a selection of the best models I have had the pleasure of working with over the last few years, both here in the UK and overseas.  Photos have been captured with various camera equipment and you can see the details by clicking on the images.
Model – Galyna
Location – Uzhgorod, Ukraine

I met Galyna when working out in Ukraine in 2011.  She was a friend of a girl I met in the office and the two of them came to my hotel for some photos.  Galyna doesn’t model in Ukraine and works at the University.  That said, she enjoys having her photo taken so every time I was in town we would hook up for photos.  Over the time of knowing her I shot with a Nikon D700, Nikon D800 and on my last trip a Leica M9.  I think my favourite images were those taken with the Nikon D800 and the amazing Samyang 85mm f1.4 lens.  Some of the photos were made with the Lensbaby Edge 80 tilt lens.  I’m sure you can spot them!

I hope to meet up with Galyna again soon and visit Ukraine next year.  I love Ukraine.  It reminds me of the UK in the 1980s bringing back memories from my childhood.  I love the old cars and the famous Lada!  My first car was a Lada Niva Cossack 4×4 which I had for 6 years.  Amazing car full of character!  I would have one again tomorrow if I could afford a ‘Sunday’ car!  I like the old buildings in Ukraine and the general less developed feel to parts of the country.  It make for an amazing backdrop for photos.  A high percentage of Ukrainian girls could probably model here in the UK as they have the tall slim genes like Galyna.  That and the fact that Ukrainian women dress to impress, whether for work or a night out.  The clothes some girls wore in the office looked similar to what we would see in a nightclub in the UK!  Quite a distraction!  I was amazed there were not more car crashes!!

Here are a few photos from my trips, 2011-2013.

2012 REPOST: Nikon D800 + Samyang 85mm f1.4 Fashion
Galyna with Edge 80
Galyna with Edge 80
Lensbaby Edge 80
Window Light
Galyna SOOC
Leica M9 & VC Nokton 40/1.4
Galyna, Ukraine
Galyna, Uzhgord. Ukraine
Galyna, Ukraine, 1/10 handheld
High Key Portrait
Leica M9 + VC Nokton 40mm f1.4 Portrait
Natural Beauty - Galyna
Galyna SOOC, ISO 2500

I hope you liked them!

Look out for my “MOTW” blog posts for more model photography photos going forward!
Thanks
Matt

Nikkor 200mm f2 AI-s Shoot

Engagement Shoot – Kenilworth Castle, Warwickshire
(Part 2 – With Nikon D800)

Coventry Wedding Photographer

Following my Leica M9 engagement shoot post yesterday, here are some of the photos taken from the same shoot but with a Nikon D800 + Nikkor 200mm f2 AI-s. I was interested to see if the 200f2 could offer anything extra to what my Leica lenses give me to make it worth while carrying the extra bulk and weight.

I arrangeed this shoot with Harriett and Ashley as I wanted to showcase to couples who are looking to have an engagement shoot or book a wedding photographer what is possible for you. I aim to provide wedding couples with a mix of relaxed reportage style candid photos throughout the day plus some posed high fashion wedding portraits as seen here. This is my style of wedding photography.

Yesterday we took a trip to Kenilworth Castle. Harriett and Ashley modelled for me and Donna kindly came along as my lighting assistant. I used the same lighting and equipment that I use on a wedding day and going forward I plan to take an assistant with me for every shoot (feel free to get in touch if you would like to get involved) to help hold my light so I can achieve the look I desire.

Lighting was fully portable using speedlights.

Photos shot as Nikon D800 black and white JPEGs in camera and finished in Lightroom 3. I prefer the rendering of the Leica images but the 200m f2 can produce some stunning photos that are both sharp and have a very shallow depth of field.

Gallery:

Let me know which you prefer.. the Leica M9 images or the Nikon D800 ones. I like them both but I feel the Leica has the edge for my taste.

MatthewOsbornePhotography.co.uk – Leica Wedding Photographer

Related Post

Engagement Shoot – Part 1 (Leica M9 Engagement Photography)

Leica M Type 240 ..Any benefits over the M9?

Leica M Type 240

Leica M Type 240 ..Any benefits over the M9?

I suspect like many Leica M9 owners I have just been reading up on the newer ‘more advanced’ Leica M Type 240 (“Typ 240”). To give non-Leica users some background the Leica M9 was released in 2009 and uses a Kodak 18.5mp CCD sensor). The Leica ‘M’ (Type 240) was released in 2012 and uses a more standard CMOS sensor (24mp) as found in many DSLRs.

As a Leica wedding photographer and portrait / fashion photographer I now use the Leica M9 for almost all my work regardless of whether on location or in the studio. My very capable Nikon D800 DSLR has become my backup camera. The only time I might feel I need to pull out the Nikon D800 during my regular work is in the evening during very dimly lit wedding ceremonies. If I am trying to freeze action using available light only the ISO 3200 of the D800 can save me. I find the Leica M9 is useable up to ISO 800 for people shots in dark conditions and even at ISO 2500 on occasion but I would not like to make it a regular occurrence.

So, onto the new Leica M Type 240

Much has already been written about the Leica M so I am just going to summarise the key points that stood out for me for my given situation from the research I have done.

Advantages of the Leica M Type 240 vs. Leica M9

  • High ISO capability* (I could shoot at ISO 3200 and have useable photos)
  • Larger 3” LCD Display* (with 4x more resolution to the M9)
  • Quiet shutter release* (good for documentary style wedding photography)
  • Weather sealed (always handy for when needs must)
  • EVF Electronic Viewfinder (so can use any lens on the M’ and focus similar to a SLR, through the lens)
  • Larger battery (longer battery life)
  • Increased dynamic range and resolution (in theory good but read more below)
  • Video and Live View option (with focus peaking if you like that)

(* Very attractive to me for the work I do)

Advantages for me to have a 2 Leica camera setup rather than Leica + DSLR

  • I would only need to carry 1 set of lenses (not Leica gear + Nikon gear)
  • Leica lenses and bodies are smaller reducing my overall camera bag size
  • I can benefit from using the high quality Leica M mount lenses in any given situation, day or night

Disadvantages for me selling my DSLR

I think regardless of how good a manual rangefinder camera is, such as the Leica M9 and Leica M, there will always be a potential need for a DSLR camera. Examples include fast action photography, wildlife photography, macro photography, creative photography using special effect lenses such as a Lensbaby. The fact that the latest Leica M camera is starting to include features found in DLSR and mirrorless cameras such as the CMOS sensor and EVF shows the market need for these features.

Can the Leica M Type 240 replace the Leica M9?

Not in a million years!! The M9 is special and the Kodak CCD sensor produces unique photos that the new M CMOS sensor cannot match. The M photos are nice and are comparable to using a Nikon D800 or perhaps a Canon 5D Mk III. The photos have got that sharp generic characterless look. The Leica M9 is special for me as I enjoy film photography and the black and white images possible from the M9 CCD sensor to me are near indistinguishable from 35mm film. With the rising costs of film to me this is the best of both worlds.

Example – Leica M9 & Zeiss ZM Sonnar 50mm f1.5. London

London Street Photography

So, would I replace my M9? No. I am not willing to give up the famous ‘Leica look’ that is due to the CCD sensor more so than the lenses.

Would I consider buying a Leica M Type 240 in the future?

Possibly, to use as a second body and for low light photography depending on my situation and work needs at that time. It is not a cheap camera! I think I rather wait and hope than Leica see sense and create some super Leica hybrid CCD-CMOS sensor!

Other options on the market?

If I want to stay with my beloved CCD sensor the next step would get very expensive. I could give up the small size of the Leica M gear and invest in a medium format Leica S2!

S2

MatthewOsbornePhotography.co.uk – Leica Wedding Photographer

Nikkor 135mm f2.8 NAI (Pre Ai)

My latest purchase!! Nikkor 135mm f2.8 Pre Ai

135b

Here is a test shot with my latest lens for my Nikon D800, a 1970s Nikkor 135mm f2.8 pre Ai prime lens. This photo of my Arri light is shot at f2.8 with no sharpening applied, just watermarked.

Another example, this time at f5.6 using an extension tube to let me get closer to my subject thereby creating a shallow DOF. (Macro is always a great way to test lens sharpness!)

Nikkor 135mm f2.8 pre AI

I love the older Nikon NAI, AI, AI-s lenses. Proper metal and glass construction, nice and weighty and super sharp. My current favourites and probably my highest performing two lenses for my Nikon D800 DSLR are my Nikkor 50mm f1.2 Ai-S and my Nikkor 200mm f2 Ai-S. The Nikkor 135/2.8 completes the trio and replaced my Nikkor 80-200 f2.8 that I recently sold. The 80-200/2.8 was my only zoom lens and left from my Nikon D90 days. My current setup of manual Nikkor primes makes me look forward to using my D800, for both beauty/ fashion portraits and wedding photography.  The 135/2.8 gives me that extra reach yet it is a 52mm filter size with built in hood and half the size of the common 70-200/2.8s.  Half the size means I am more mobile and I can also get into the action easier at weddings without being seen quite as easily.

The eBay purchased lens arrived very dirty but to my relief underneath the skylight filter the glass was in great condition and it cleaned up nicely. Phew!

I will use the Nikkor 135/2.8 on my next portrait session and come back with the results soon.

MatthewOsbornePhotography.co.uk

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