I visited the photography show today, I go every year though when I get there I’m never quite sure I’ve done the right thing. I’m not really the biggest fan of large swathes of people in crowded spaces. It’s also not the least bit geared up for people like me who don’t really like digital cameras. But, since it’s only an hour away on the train, and since my professional status gets me a free ticket, it’s hard to resist poking my nose around the door. I did have a couple of people I wanted to see too, so I at least didn’t find myself wondering around entirely aimlessly.
First port of call was the Lomography stand. I was contacted by them not so long ago when a chap from Lomography NYC had asked if I’d like to have a go with the little Minitar lens. I agreed that I’d quite like to, but through the discussion about the loan he realised I was in the UK and therefore that it would be better if I dealt with Lomography over on this side of the pond. A few emails later and I was in convo with a nice lady here in the UK who agreed it would be OK for me to have a go with a lens or two as soon as review copies came available. Since we’d only chatted via email, I thought I’d go and introduce myself properly.
It’s pretty interesting speaking to them about the new kit they are bringing out. Whilst I’m not really the target audience for the instant stuff, it’s hard to argue with the fact that they’re starting to make gear that’s of increasing interest to people like me. The chap who got in touch with me from the US had done so after seeing my posts about lens conversions. The little minitar is of course made from the lens off a Lomo LC-A adapted to m-mount, so it’s hard not to be intrigued by it!
And then there’s the new Jupiter-3. A lens that’s based on the early Zeiss Sonnar. Being someone with both an early and the latest Zeiss Sonnar, it’s quite clearly within the scope of what I’m interested in.
Of course time will tell on how I get along with this gear in practice, but it’s certainly nice of them to offer to loan me things!
Next was the Zeiss stand. If you’ve read my Sonnar review you’ll know I was in contact with a chap from Zeiss in Germany about the ins and outs of that lens before I bought one. I’d originally met him at the Zeiss stand last year, so went to say hi.
I had a feeling that since I last met folks from Zeiss UK the team has changed somewhat, and since I’ve been mulling over getting in touch with them to borrow a 28mm ZM, I wanted to meet the right people. A quick chat and a few intros and it looks like I should have it on its way to me for a loan in the not too distant future… Excited about that!
Then followed a quick poke around the Linnhoff studio stand. It’s like teasing myself walking around Morgan Motors showroom looking at that stand – lots of drooling over stuff I’ll never be able to afford.
I then met Mike from Macfilos and his mate Joe for lunch. Wetherspoons. Pulled pork and chicken burger and a pint on Mike. Happy with that, thanks Mike, a lunch is owed!
After that, we descended on the Leica stand. I found the chap in customer care I wanted to talk to. Found out that I can indeed have the little bit of dust cleaned from behind the eyepiece of my M-A here in the UK, which is nice – they’ll even do it whilst I wait if I take it to Mayfair.
We then went and had a chat with Jenny, who reminded a few times that I’d really like to borrow a Leica 262. She reminded me that I have to be patient as they only have one loan unit… Fair, but it ain’t gonna stop me nagging about it!
With a bit of wondering around, battling the crowds in between stand, that was pretty much the day done… Remarkably, I didn’t actually buy anything, not even the slightly overpriced, slightly tatty Leica Minilux on the Camera World stand… Which was pretty restrained for me!