Disaster. Catastrophe. Destruction. Not the typical opening you would imagine for a 5 frames with story. But that’s where this story goes… But like all good fairy tales there is a happy ending.
Rewind to the start of June. I was shooting exclusively with my Leica M240 + Voigtlander 40mm f1.2 combo in Perth, Western Australia. Perth was consistently perfect. Every afternoon – without fail – delivered amazing sunsets over the Indian Ocean. I shot landscapes, street scenes, low light scenarios and a plethora of random shots around Scarborough beach and Fremantle.
My trusted Leica M240 and 40mm delivered amazing shots in a small package that I could take anywhere and everywhere without being weighed down. The small form factor combined with super sharp optics (wide open) meant that I could shoot in almost any lighting situation without having to worry about pushing the ISO beyond my comfort zone.
A few facts about the 40mm f1.2.
The 40mm is a solid but not overly heavy aluminium lens at 315g, with an aperture range of f/1.2 to f/22.
55º angle of view, M-mount, with a minimum focus distance of 1.6’ (50cm).
The 40mm has 10 diaphragm blades (to render dreamy, creamy backgrounds wide open) combined with a 53mm filter thread.
What’s not to love about a spec list like that? Well for some it’s the focal length. Most photographers have a 35mm and a 50mm lens in their kit, so adding a lens like the 40mm arsenal is a little odd. But what I have come to love about this lens (other than the amazing rendering of the image) is the simplification of my kit. I personally prefer to shoot 28mm and 75mm so 40mm sits just right in my kit for me. I can more-or-less cover both my 35mm and 50mm focal lengths in one lens. So other than the other benefits mentioned, it’s the reduction of gear that makes me happy.
But it can’t all be good news right? The only downside I would say to this lens is frame lines. Shooting on a Leica M240 brings up the 50mm frame lines. Now this isn’t a deal breaker for me because you simply need to get used to framing with 50mm in new but know that you have a little extra room to play with in the final composed image. Alternatively you could also see Hamish’s handy “Activating the 35mm frame lines” hack here. There are a range of methods ranging from barbaric to less-barbaric.
So what’s this disaster I hear you ask? Well, having arrived back in Singapore with a bunch of amazing photos and all luggage in tow, disaster befell my beloved M240. I had finished cleaning my gear, packed all lenses and camera bodies in my two dry cabinets, closed the door but forgot to lock the door. This is when disaster struck. One morning I woke to the sound of a large, heavy thud. Upon walking to my dry cabinet my eyes grew large as the cabinet door was wide open. My M240 had gone to camera heaven. The cause, my very cute and wide eyed 2 year old. An accident of course.
But on positive note, the end of my M240 was the beginning of my Leica M10, so I am definitely a a happy camper now. I have the awesome M10 paired up with the amazing Voigtlander 40mm f1.2! So the opening photo of the 40mm is on a Leica M10 – my replacement for my trusted M240.
Thanks for reading!