You will recall I mentioned not so long ago about being excited to be the owner of a Leica camera. Well I am about to sell it!
Don’t get me wrong, I love it but the photography course I have started ensures that you take all of your photos in manual mode.
The Leica can do this but the screen lets it down. I find it hard to work out what is in focus and constantly get poor results.
Don’t get me wrong though, when the camera is on auto focus its brilliant. Sadly that is not going to help me learn!
I decided to resurrect my trusted old Olympus PEN EPL 1 and found the control system and (most importantly), the manual focus much easier to achieve. I decided to pack it along with a 14-42 mm lens and head into London.
Sadly this is where I got a nasty surprise. I was just testing the camera and playing with aperture, shutter speed and ISO when the screen went black. 😦
This was the best of the shots I managed but the camera simply refused to play. I removed the lens. Changed the settings etc but the problem persisted – annoyingly I had black screen more than an image which (on a camera with no view finder), is a problem.
I decided as I was in Covent Garden, I would pop to the London Camera Exchange for some advice.
The lady in the store was really knowledgable and tried to help with my PEN but it didn’t want to play.
I didn’t have the cash for a new camera (especially as I only recently bought the Leica) and wanted to ensure I could use a system I was familiar with that would also work with my lenses.
Luckily for me they had a couple of Micro Four Third cameras and two versions of the Olympus EM5.
I gave it a test run in the store and was amazed by the speed and functionality of the camera.
It’s a couple of years old but still younger than my PEN.
I took to the streets of London (with two cameras!) and set about getting some shots.
Now I admit I didn’t have the strongest idea how to use the camera but took the little knowledge I have and took some shots around Covent Garden, Regent Street and other tourists traps.
I must have looked like I knew what I was doing as a couple of tourists handed me their SLR to ask me to take photos of them!
The initial shots are a bit grey/green (it was a dull day but not that dull). I think I have worked out the fix for that now.
I did managed some great candid action shots on Regent Street (above) and the odd street photo.
These are not great but I am pleased considering I had the camera five minutes, had no manual for the settings and took these in manual mode (the camera did little to help me achieve these effects).
I spent today reading more of my course material and watching the supplementary videos which gave me some great advice.
Obviously I decided experiment with the settings to get a feel for the camera with my favourite model, Tilly.
Although not traditional portraits I think I have done a good job capturing these shots…
The sun came out just as it was due to set so I took a walk around the block and had tried some other ideas with the camera, again initially trying to get used to the manual settings.
I love the light breaking through the tress at the wood by our house…
Photography is almost as much about luck as anything else and the lighting gave me a perfect opportunity on the walk back home. One of the young trees has turned it fiery autumnal colours and the sunlight breaking through was magical. I am very pleased with this photo:
I have a long way to go I am sure but I love this new camera and am happy this has rekindled my interest in photography (which is partly why I wanted to do the course). 🙂
Clicking each image should take you to more details on my Flickr page. Enjoy.