In my Islanders post I said that every photographer can learn something by trying out another than their usual format once in a while and while at the time of writing it I did not have the intention in mind to do this myself, a new 35mm rangefinder came my way (originally intended for our Camera Spare Part service) and I could not resist trying it out, especially since my Leica M6 has been in repair since July last year.
I cannot really tell — yet — what I have learned from turning away from the large format photography I have been doing almost exclusively for one year now. However, I already know it is refreshing in so many ways, not least because you simply don’t feel it is “serious” what you taking photos of (if there is or should be such a thing). You just play around and take the mind into different spheres from what you are normally used to. It probably doesn’t even matter what route you go down, film, digital, whatever, as long as it is somewhat new to you and lets your mind wander down new paths, be open to some surprises on the way. Photography just seems to be that kind of pursuit; It’s all about not being bored.
In the current issue of Nippon Camera is a rundown of cameras that Daido Moriyama used for various books or projects. There are SLRs, compacts… every series seems to have a different camera associated with it. While this may appeal to some gear heads, I think it is significant in a way, but totally meaningless in another — apologies for being vague here, but I hope you get the idea.
And here is another quote to leave you in the spirit:
There is always a spirit of experimentation with photography. You never settle on one particular way of working, I don’t think.
Photo above by John Sypal’s Tokyo Camera Style