Oct. 25, The Return of the Leica Ic: Buildings & Copex

I love my old 1949 Leica Ic, but to be honest it’s not half the camera that my Canon IVSb2 is, I mean that literally, as it’s missing the upper range finder section. Aside from the missing rangefinder/viewfinder, It’s just not as solid, well machined or precise as the Canon but I don’t love it any less for all that. I’m sure the previous statement will piss some people off, but that’s not my intent.

The Canon, while as near perfect as a Barnack style rangefinder can be is almost too much in my opinion. I normally use wide angle lenses and just zone focus. The wide angle lenses all require external viewfinders as well, so the built in viewfinder and very cool three setting magnifying rangefinder on the Canon are mostly vestigial for me. I usually prefer the stripped down, all business, no rangefinder Leica most of the time.

The sharkskin Leica Ic (right) and its nemesis the Canon IVSb2

When I bought the Leica it had ostensibly been CLA’d but after quite a few rolls of film, it started to do odder and odder things with the frame spacing until it wasn’t usable at all. Youxin Ye to the rescue! Now the Leica is solid as a rock and works perfectly.

And the Leica solo

For the first roll of film with the newly revived Leica I decided to shoot Agfa Copex 50. I’ve become a big booster of Agfa films, a lot of the Rollei films that I love so much are made by Agfa, and Copex 50 is a real stunner in my humble opinion. In fact, I’d call it a severely under rated sleeper of a film. It gives me everything I’m looking for in a film; high contrast but with a good range of tonality, really black blacks, extreme sharpness and dark skies with no filter. Sure it’s only ISO 50 but on a sunny day, as we have so many of here in the high desert of Reno, it’s all I need. I should add that Copex is reasonably priced by todays standards, it’s less than Fomapan where I buy film.

There’s another reason I wanted to use Copex today. It develops just fine in Caffenol and I was hoping it would work as well with Artemisianol, my homemade sagebrush developer and it does.

I’ve written before about the virtues of my (Cosina) Vogtlander 15mm Super Wide-Heliar, it’s the lens that made me fall in love with photography. It’s sharp, contrasty and w-i-d-e! Perfect for a walk around town shooting buildings.

I would love to call these shots Architectural Photography, but I think they’re a little more humble than that. They’re just buildings in mid town Reno.

Under Construction
Alley Split Level
Double Arch
Motor Lodge
Double Blanks

2 responses to “Oct. 25, The Return of the Leica Ic: Buildings & Copex”

  1. A very Gothic look! Anyhow looks great!
    Glad you brought the leica back to life???

    Do you shoot with vintage nikon f, or f2?


    1. Thanks Fred! Yes, I love that old Leica. No, I’ve only ever shot a digital Nikon.


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