We had a busted hose in our house a couple of months ago, caused major water damage in the house. That's why I've been missing in action in the photography front. Finally, everything is repaired and life has returned to normal. We took my son and nephews to Universal Studio Hollywood today because their spring break is coming to an end. I didn't take a lot of shots since it was our 4th or 5th time back with our annual pass.
Leica doesn't make it easy for someone to hold on to a camera year after years. With great restraint, I'm using shooting with the M9 after all these years. The sensor of the typ-240 didn't impress me enough to upgrade, which is ultimately the same reason I didn't go for the M-D, even though it hit all the right notes for me ergonomically. I'm afraid the M10 is just too much for me to resist with the ISO dial, thinner body, viewfinder upgrade, and wonderful new sensor. I will, however, be a little bit more stubborn and wait for the M-P version, making my M9 almost 10 years old when I do switch.
Why not wait for the M-D version? The real pull of the M-D version for me was the ISO dial on the back and never needing the LCD screen again. However, now with the dedicated ISO dial on top, I will have what I need and be able to see all my exposure settings by look down at the camera. I can just turn off previews, and reserve the right to use it when I need it. I would love to try to shoot with the WATE without the franken-finder and use the LCD screen liveview for focusing and composing. Also having the option to format SD cards in camera will be nice, which is not available with the M-D.
So, I've successfully punt the camera purchase decision down another 1 or 2 years, and my wallet will thank me for that.
Jessica needed some photos of herself, so we hanged some sheets for backdrop and setup a single light for a quick portrait session. A bit awkward for both of us... since she's not used to modeling and I'm not used to shooting studio portraits. But we pushed through and came out with some nice shots and a bit more experience for both of us :)
For new year's eve, we drove up to Lake Arrowhead and stayed in a cabin. There were rain, there were snow, but luckily we didn't need any tire chains. It's not easy to encounter this type of images in SoCal, so I was entranced by the foggy scenery. Besides my numbing fingers, my only other concern was trying to keep the lens clean and dry. Although the M9 isn't marketed as weather-proof, it performed flawlessly none-the-less.
Lake Arrowhead is only about 3500 feet up, so we had mostly rain; only at night, when it's cold enough, we're able to get snow. We were stucked in the cabin most of the time, but we made the most of the sunshine we were able to get.
For the full set of images, [CLICK HERE]
For our company holiday party this year, we visited Malibu Wines which also had a safari ride through the SaddleRock Winery. Thousands of acres in the Malibu hills, mixed with animals and grape vines, what a beautiful and scenic setting.
Today is another CicLAvia event, in the heart of LA. The bike routes connected Chinatown, Boyle Heights, and MacArthur Park. We parked our car in Chinatown and rode our way through Downtown LA's financial district to MacArthur Park, and stopped by Little Tokyo for lunch on our way back.
With my minimal setup, just the M9 and 35'Cron, I caught a few keepers along the way. This bike event always gave us a great experience because it allowed us to pass through places that we normally took for granted, showing us beauty that can only be appreciated if you slow down.
The route also past right in front of the Bradbury building, so of course I couldn't resist to go inside and just bask in its beauty for a little bit. I wasn't expecting to take that many pictures so I didn't put in a freshly charged battery and ended up running out of juice around lunch time. I was glad to at least caught this last image, though.
Went to have lunch with father-in-law today at Din Tai Fung, in the Arcadia Mall. They told us it was going to be 1.5-hour wait... and we saw that a new Uncle Tetsu bakery just opened next door and there was a long line for that too. So why not kill two birds? We waited in line for the cheesecake while waiting for our table for lunch. Here are just some shots while being bored.
It was a hot day... after a brief debate in the morning, we decided to follow our plan to visit the Universal Studio Hollywood since the kids have been wanting to see the new Harry Potter attractions. It was nice of them to install many misty cooling fans all around the theme park on a hot day like this. It really made it more bearable. When the light hits mist in the afternoon, it also made dramatic images.
Today, I went light... armed with just the 35'Cron and a spare battery. Once I settled in with the 35mm field of view, things got a bit easier and I was able to take some street shots. People paid no attentions to me as I snapped away. To see the full set of images from today, please [CLICK HERE].
We have not been back to the Silver Saddle Ranch since our first visit 2 years ago. This weekend, we decided to visit it again to celebrate a friend's birthday. It felt as if time has stood still in California City. We were hoping to see more development around the ranch, but I guess things progress much slower in the desert.
Lately, I've been doing less photography, and when I shoot, I use mainly just the 50'Lux. For the complete set, you may [CLICK HERE].
Happy birthday to my little one... We invited all the family for a nice surf and turf dinner. With the older cousins going off to college and military, it'll be harder and harder to get everyone back together for group photos in the future.
... and don't forget, a "funny face" photo! Processed with VSCO Film "S - Fuji FP-100c Cool ++" preset.
My Journey into Leica...
A path not to be taken lightly, not without reservations, and not without dedication, but the results can be sweet, OH SO SWEET! This is a documentation of my trials and tribulations into the world of Leica Rangefinder Photography, and I hope you'll enjoy coming along with me.