MartinDixon

Joined on May 4, 2014

Comments

Total: 70, showing: 1 – 20
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In reply to:

Robert1975: This is not a bug, this is a feature.
Just like you have Leica without display, you also have unreadable RAWs.
It makes things more interesting and artistic.

Your argument fails for three reasons: My analogy is correct because I am basing my assistance as a photographer with 39 years of experience to share. I don't care one bit what you use to photograph. Two, money is relative. My apartment in New York went for $5,000 a month. Perhaps someone would consider that high, others, low. I can't say I care. Three, I rode a Honda sport bike but again, it doesn't matter. A fellow rider in need was a fellow rider in need. Harley charges what they can for their bikes. I am not a communist. If you can get, it good for you. The market and deep pockets will decide if the business model works or not. Leica isn't broken. They have simply forgotten their base that made them famous from 1960-1990. I am part of that base and after 32 countries with my Leica M9, it, and I, are still going strong. Photographers talking about gear is like is like writers talking about what font to use for their novels. F**king unimportant for making art.

Link | Posted on Aug 17, 2019 at 16:42 UTC
In reply to:

Robert1975: This is not a bug, this is a feature.
Just like you have Leica without display, you also have unreadable RAWs.
It makes things more interesting and artistic.

I am a lifelong Leica M user so I can't comment on the screen-less Q series. I am reading many comments about money, fashion and posing but it sounds to me like a fellow photographer is asking for assistance. If you have encountered this problem, lend a hand but denigrating someone's choice of camera doesn't really help anyone. I ride a Japanese sportbike and love watching the Harley crowd talk about my bike when it's parked but never complain when I stop along the side of the road to loan them my tools when they break down. Interesting...

Link | Posted on Jul 25, 2019 at 18:34 UTC
On article Best waterproof cameras of 2019 (227 comments in total)

Save your money people. I just picked up a GoPro knock off (SJCAM 5000) to use in the beaches in Dakar and it works very well. $120 with an underwater housing and many different mounts. I went to a known camera store in NY and bought similar camera models to the ones advertised here and was immediately disappointed. One camera listed as waterproof to 15 ft had water trapped between the lens and body after just 3 minutes. Another had an aperture of what had to be f8 or f11. In a super nova you might get a good exposure a few minutes before a meteor hits our planet. I bought this little unit for my kids who are prone to break things. I didn't want to spend much as things tend to go missing or lost in the ocean. Above water you get some back light underexposures but that's easily fixed with an EV adjustment. But underwater this little guy is in its element. Clean HD video, a fast lens and tiny size, fits within your palm. Save your money. If your filming in the water, why stress the money

Link | Posted on Jun 17, 2018 at 09:14 UTC as 62nd comment
In reply to:

Frank_BR: The article is about the reasons for not being a photographer while the video is about the reasons for not being an artist. There seems to be some confusion there.

Being a photographer is easy, it only depends on you. Being an artist is much more difficult because it depends on others judging your work as a true art.

Please explain how others judge your work as true art. How many Susan Sontags are there is this forum? That supposition alone, that the audience decides who you are and the merits of your work, is enough to make anyone quit. Art, at it's core, is a desire to express and communicate your beliefs. Whether you are a writer, dancer, sculpture, filmmaker, the medium you choose is secondary to what you have to say with it. To imply Ingmar Bergman is not not an artist because you didn't/couldn't/ wouldn't understand Gestalt Cinema or French New Wave films implies perhaps a lack of understanding on the part of the viewer. In today's society of FB/Instagram like/ didn't like mouse clicks, what useful information does an artist derive from such polarizing one liners. Ok, you didn't like it. But why? Choosing to be an artist is both a creative and commercial decision. If you're only doing it for the money, you may likely give up before mastering the necessary visual language to succeed.

Link | Posted on Aug 16, 2017 at 21:13 UTC

My experiences with Adorama and BH go back to 1983 as a student at SVA. One was located on 17th St. and the other around the corner on 18th St. I never saw them as competitors. I thought they were working together since most prices only varied by a few dollars. We poor students were sent there because no one could touch their prices. No one in the entire country. I don't know what they did or what monopoly they owned but they had the best prices hands down. They might have been the first to offer gray market equipment. But I'll never forget the deadpan sales people who took your orders. No matter what you bought, no matter how many thousands of dollars you spent, you would get the dry, "is that all?" question. As if spending $5,000 - $10,000 on gear at one shot was boring them to tears. A very funny memory. Oh well. I have a good rapport with the guys at Adorama. Some of them actually make photographs. But Lens and Repro was the best before being bought out by Calumet. Oh well...

Link | Posted on Aug 16, 2017 at 20:37 UTC as 88th comment | 3 replies
In reply to:

MartinDixon: As someone who has to send his beloved M9 to Germany due to sensor corrosion, I cannot say that my 30 year relationship with my Leicas (plural) has been all pleasure. But when I look at my files, I have no regrets and that Leicas are in a niche market. If I need to bang out 10 frames a second with 300mm glass I have the EOS 1D Mark IV Canon for that. Selling a 45% stake does raise much needed cash for R&D but I do wonder if Leica has left its base of Carteir-Bresson photographers for the well-heeled Rodeo Drive crowd who want matching crocodile skins. Good luck to them.

I wouldn't shoot with the SL if it were given to me for free and I am not a sports photographer so I could care less about frames per second.. High ISO, low ISO, it's all light to me. But we never talk about images here, only tech specs that bore the F&**ing life out me of. Go to the Victoria and Albert or MOMA and ask what gear the photographers used to get on the wall. We'd be laughed out the building. Make something worth looking at and you have my undivided attention.

Link | Posted on Aug 5, 2017 at 21:37 UTC

As someone who has to send his beloved M9 to Germany due to sensor corrosion, I cannot say that my 30 year relationship with my Leicas (plural) has been all pleasure. But when I look at my files, I have no regrets and that Leicas are in a niche market. If I need to bang out 10 frames a second with 300mm glass I have the EOS 1D Mark IV Canon for that. Selling a 45% stake does raise much needed cash for R&D but I do wonder if Leica has left its base of Carteir-Bresson photographers for the well-heeled Rodeo Drive crowd who want matching crocodile skins. Good luck to them.

Link | Posted on Aug 4, 2017 at 22:20 UTC as 9th comment | 3 replies
In reply to:

MartinDixon: While the edits don't elicit any deep emotional response from me, they aren't "bad" photographs per se. Rather, they are subjective moments paused in time. The B/W hands waving frame could be anything really from fighting to ordering a tea in Kabul. We are left to sort it out ourselves. We also don't know what moves the judges as there is no definitive great image to compare anything. It is all relative. Perhaps Magnum wants to weigh the competition, perhaps they want to remain apart. Who knows. Just make good images and satisfy your clients and yourselves. Do you actually need an award?

I am confused. I am commenting on all the negative feedback about what images shouldn't have made the cut. I am commenting on the judges perspectives. Yes, photography is subjective. Which is why I said it. So , what are you adding to the post?

Link | Posted on Jul 24, 2017 at 09:41 UTC
In reply to:

cosinaphile: a desperation to be valid... a raising of novilty and quirkiness to the status of high art ..... the emperors closet has been raided and appropriated by critics desperate for any degree of notice or validity

one upon a time a curator with more courage than brains and taste decided that artworks containing urine and faeces should be elevated to fine art status

and i think its been downhill from there .......................

ok im done

You are obviously referring to Andres Serrano's "P&*^ Christ" photo or the Elephant Dung painting by Chris Ofili that was on exhibit I believe at the Brooklyn Museum. But what are we calling "going downhill from there?" Differences in cultural perspectives have gotten people killed all around the world. Just recently in India a man was killed by a lynch mob for transporting cows. Sacred to them, hamburgers to us. The Taliban tortures girls who go to school. Women who drive in Saudi are flogged. Bloggers in Ethiopia can be arrested as terrorists. We need to remember the world is bigger than our own horizons. And as many would agree, all art is a form of social rebellion.

Link | Posted on Jul 19, 2017 at 13:53 UTC

While the edits don't elicit any deep emotional response from me, they aren't "bad" photographs per se. Rather, they are subjective moments paused in time. The B/W hands waving frame could be anything really from fighting to ordering a tea in Kabul. We are left to sort it out ourselves. We also don't know what moves the judges as there is no definitive great image to compare anything. It is all relative. Perhaps Magnum wants to weigh the competition, perhaps they want to remain apart. Who knows. Just make good images and satisfy your clients and yourselves. Do you actually need an award?

Link | Posted on Jul 19, 2017 at 13:42 UTC as 8th comment | 2 replies
On article Hot mess: Remembering the Leica M8 (161 comments in total)
In reply to:

dmanthree: Yes, the M8 can be had relatively cheaply, but not because it was superseded. It's because it's crap.

Brooklyn Kings: New York City's Black Bikers is listed on Amazon.com and was published by powerHouse books. I was interviewed by BBC, NPR, Vogue, The Source, Fader Magazine, Washington Post and many other outlets. It's old now. My latest book projects are on Addis Ababa and Dakar. I will keep you posted. Cheers,

Martin Dixon

Link | Posted on Jul 19, 2017 at 13:32 UTC
On article Hot mess: Remembering the Leica M8 (161 comments in total)
In reply to:

Lobbamobba: On my top 3 of best cameras ever. And that is compared to modern cameras.
Even my XT2 can't make that list.

Hello @ZeBebito, thanks for understanding my point. This forum started by asking the question what do we think of our Leica M8s? If you didn't have this camera your comments had no merit. I said that in Ethiopia alone I made 50,000 files with it. That was when I was based there in 2011-2013. I am now in West Africa and mainly using my M9 and Canon EOS 1DS Mark lV. But that matters little. I loved my little M8 and it served we well. I made so much money I could buy another one every week. The CCD sensor, albeit old, in that camera was dead on sharp. I know it's limited at high ISO so I didn't use it at high ISO. Duh! It's cold in Alaska, don't wear a t-shirt. The right tool for the right job. And working in Africa comes with it's own issues. No one paid attention to my little Leica. But the big Canon and Nikon rigs got harassed regularly. No camera will make you a better photographer. It is an extension of your eyes. And if you don't point it at anything worth filming... well you know

Link | Posted on Jun 29, 2017 at 15:30 UTC
On article Hot mess: Remembering the Leica M8 (161 comments in total)
In reply to:

Lobbamobba: On my top 3 of best cameras ever. And that is compared to modern cameras.
Even my XT2 can't make that list.

For some reason, we are talking about image quality without talking about images. Why would I want to see an incredibly sharp photo of boring nonsense? A tool is a tool. I would not grab an M8 to shoot at 1600 ISO. I have other cameras that perform better at higher ISO. But answer me this Batman, are you a working professional living from the sale of your prints and assignments? Because if you aren't then I am talking to posers who want to pretend that having the latest gear makes them a pro. If you love your Fuji, great. I could care less what you use. It's a moot point. But weak photos made with any camera will always be weak photos and no camera is a substitute for photographic vision. By that logic, your a better writer than Joyce because you use Word 2000. Better than Van Gogh with your new brushes. Not likely. I also mentioned looking up my Brooklyn Kings book to see what moves me. I didn't hear anyone tell me to look up their internationally published books. 'Nuff said.

Link | Posted on Jun 29, 2017 at 15:20 UTC
On article Hot mess: Remembering the Leica M8 (161 comments in total)
In reply to:

dmanthree: Yes, the M8 can be had relatively cheaply, but not because it was superseded. It's because it's crap.

You missed my earlier post, over 50,000 files in Addis Ababa with the M8 alone. It is a very capable camera in the hands of a capable photographer. There is no such thing as camera magic. It either works or it doesn't. I am a working pro based in West Africa. No one cares what hangs around your neck if the images are awful. So yes, I have used it for years, have an M9, EOS Mark lV, 5D Mark 11 and a Mamiya Leaf back. I see no reason to offer incorrect information. The camera is limited just as Kodachrome 64 was limited. And yet we used it daily and loved our results. Look up "Brooklyn Kings" and then you'll know what I have done.

Link | Posted on Jun 27, 2017 at 12:03 UTC
On article Hot mess: Remembering the Leica M8 (161 comments in total)
In reply to:

RayEames: I picked up the M8 last year. This is the poor woman's temporary fix to NOT buying the Monochrom. I already had an M6 with a 50 summicron so the addition was easy.

I found the latest Leica 28mm f2.8 and Voightlander 15mm II (both used) fun for shooting IR. The Elmarit is so sharp. While the M8 is not a Monochrom replacement, it "kinda" staves off an inevitable purchase.

I had the opportunity to shoot a lot with the original Monochrom the year it came out... such a great street tool. Also shot last summer with the SL and those b/w conversions are ridiculous. Honestly, the D810, achieves a really nice BW conversion.

Rangefinders are just so intuitive and a great tool for discretion on the street. If you are a rangefinder person and 10mp don't freak you out then give it try. You can always sell it later.

How many people know that the Leica rangefinder was designed to be used with "both" eyes open when filming. Your left eye sees the wide scene and the right eyes sees the frame lines. The genius of this design is no mirror blackout and a better chance to anticipate the emerging image as the elements line up. For me, that is what makes the rangefinder so appealing and why I have been a Leica user since 1988. But I am curious how many other users keep both eyes open? It takes practice but it is worth it. Try it.

Link | Posted on Jun 24, 2017 at 12:28 UTC
On article Hot mess: Remembering the Leica M8 (161 comments in total)
In reply to:

Lobbamobba: On my top 3 of best cameras ever. And that is compared to modern cameras.
Even my XT2 can't make that list.

My Fuji Xe2 is a fun camera to sling over my shoulder if I am heading to the beach. But it is not my work camera, it is simply better than a cell phone. I use it with Zeiss primes and I hate having to zoom in to check the focus because you can't trust the viewfinder. While I have moved on from the M8 I have no regrets about my years using it. I made excellent photos with it in many countries and I couldn't give a ##$$ about some websites metrics are grain analysis. It means nothing. Playing scales doesn't make you a pianist. Wearing Air Jordans doesn't make you a baller. Make photographs worth looking at and no one will ever care what you used. Shop talk is for people who never leave the shop. Meet me in Senegal, or Mali, or South Sudan and let's go shoot. You bring your big rig to and I'll bring my Leicas. Let's see what we get done. Cheers

Link | Posted on Jun 24, 2017 at 12:18 UTC
On article Hot mess: Remembering the Leica M8 (161 comments in total)
In reply to:

dmanthree: Yes, the M8 can be had relatively cheaply, but not because it was superseded. It's because it's crap.

Isn't a camera only as good as the photographer using it? Does holding a Hasselblad or Linhof make every image you create genius? Shoot crap, get crap. Good in, good out. I have never had an exhibit where someone looking at my images asked what camera or lens I used. They either liked the image or they didn't. Is the M8 limited? Sure, so was Kodachrome 64 and we pros made it work for us. I know a few fair weather photographers who are too afraid to go in the field, (i.e. abroad, hot zones) rain, snow, certain neighborhoods. And then they show me a lot of pretty pictures that look like pretty pictures everyone makes. Sorry, I fell asleep. What were you showing me?

Link | Posted on Jun 24, 2017 at 12:07 UTC
On article Hot mess: Remembering the Leica M8 (161 comments in total)

I have about 50,000 files from Addis Ababa alone made with an M8 and they are fantastic. If you shot Tri-X pan at 250 and developed it yourself, you got used to the lighting sweet spot. Typically 1/1000th at F8 1/4. Well change the limited ISO of film to the M8 and you get about 1/1000th at 5.6 1/2. While it was not my low light camera, it served me for many years in Africa where the sun is blazing and bright. My 13 x 19 prints from that period are crystal sharp. And even upgrading to the M9 didn't change much for me except the lens magnification. Buy a used model on the cheap and get back to making photographs. If you have M lenses, you won't regret it. The missing AA filter makes the difference.

Link | Posted on Jun 24, 2017 at 12:01 UTC as 8th comment

I enjoyed the B/W photo of the "creeping vines." I don't know whether the water is receding or the vines are advancing. It has a haunting presence that intrigues me. The only special use lens I ever used was the shift/tilt Canon for occasional architecture assignments. But if you get enough work to offset its cost, why not? I am happy to just look at these images and not talk shop. I hope to be in Iceland this summer. Cheers.

Link | Posted on May 6, 2017 at 18:25 UTC as 69th comment

What is even more sinister are the stock agencies and news outlets that only pay per images published. Typically this may only be $50-$100 per photo. Now who is running to Syria and the Congo for the chance to see two images in the WSJ? Not to mention I have heard horror stories in the past by some large agencies that only paid up when you had amassed invoices of $1,000 or more. Tell that to the freelance stringer who has been humping gear around the world and is only at $950 for weeks and months. Or the complete by-out of all your rights to Getty who doesn't even credit the image maker so that they could get a nod for good work on the next assignment. The handwriting is on the wall when companies will settle for a smartphone photo essay versus using a tried and true veteran. Photo editors would assign the best person for the job. Not it's going to whomever was nearest.

Link | Posted on May 4, 2017 at 13:31 UTC as 3rd comment
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