What it’s like to photograph with a Leica

It’s a beautiful thing

Martino Pietropoli

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All images by the Martino Pietropoli, shot on Leica M10 Monochrom and Summicron-M 1:2/35

I had never picked up a Leica or taken a picture with it in my entire life. Like many people, I have always been fascinated by it, even if from a distance and more than anything else by the mythical light that that object emits for anyone who loves photography. We talk about Cartier-Bresson’s camera and many of the greatest photographers in history. We are talking about a machine that has repeatedly saved the lives of many photographers by taking a bullet destined for some of their vital organs.

In short, one day I had a M10 Monochrom with a Summicron-M 1:2/35 on my hands and neck. Market value, for the curious, about 11,000 euros. And they let me walk away from the store and keep it for a whole hour! Thanks guys, I really appreciate it, I don’t know if you understand that.

But what’s it like taking pictures with her? Is it really something special? Yes, it’s something beyond expectations and I didn’t have any details about it, in the sense that it’s as if they asked me “What do you think it would be like to do something you’ll never do because your existential trajectory will never meet it?”. I don’t know.

What would it be like to score a goal at the World Cup? It’ll never happen to me. This happened to me, even if only for an hour.

In your hand

First of all, a Leica is made of antimatter. Although it is normal sized, it is heavy and solid, but with a certain gravity that indicates perfection in construction and detail. For instance: the shutter button travels *exactly* 8/10 mm because that’s the way it should operate. And the sound of the shutter? Celestial, there’s no other definition.

Another thing that surprises and perhaps leaves you a little bit bewildered is that the Leica has very few controls. The model I tested (which is the one…

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Martino Pietropoli

Architect, photographer, illustrator, writer. L’Indice Totale, The Fluxus and I Love Podcasts, co-founder @ RunLovers | -> http://www.martinopietropoli.com