Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 1997/12/19

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Subject: Re: [Leica]50/35 previsualisation
From: Bruce Feldman <>
Date: Sat, 20 Dec 1997 14:43:50 +0900 (JST)


I recall John Sexton (granted, he uses large format) saying in an article
or interview somewhere that he used one lens -- just one prime lens -- for
*six* years.  The idea was that it takes that long to really understand a
focal length.  Each focal length is really a different environment.  To be
able to look at the world and know your shot and take it is freeing in a
way.  It's like a basketball player who knows his shot and doesn't try to
be all over the floor fruitlessly and haphazardly.  I'm always amused at
these guys zooming in and out as if they're playing a trombone.  Doesn't
interest me.  Although, I might add, if I had to do it for a living; if
someone was throwing money at me, I'd be forced to change my tune.


Bruce Feldman

On 19 Dec 1997, Jeremy Kime wrote:

> >>>>>>>>>>>>>.----------
> Initially, my original post asked about the approach to seeing with a 50mm
> lens. I got one good reply,
> =========================
> Well I'll offer my thoughts, but it might not count as another 'good reply'.
> I too, have been using a 35mm lens for so long as a standard lens for 
> perhaps 95% of my shots that the expectation of what I'll see in the v/f 
> when I raise it to the eye is as near dammit the shot I'm expecting to see.
> I recently did use the 50 for rather more than the odd shot and was 
> surprised to see how much of a, relatively speaking, 'telephoto/long focus 
> lens' it appeared to be. I'm sure it's just a case of what we get accustomed 
> to, and in this sense the (pre) visualisation that we can have with our 
> normal or favourite lens can assist us greatly in taking photos without 
> having to peer through the v/f if neccersary.
> Mind you. There's probably a whole lot of difference between knowing what 
> the shot's going to look like from in front of your eyes (at normal level) 
> and held awkwardly near the hip...
> jem