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swoop
12-14-2010, 18:08
Since my 5D mk2 was stolen from my car, I've been working exclusively with the M9.



http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum1.jpg


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http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum3.jpg


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http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum14.jpg


http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum15.jpg

swoop
12-14-2010, 18:10
http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum16.jpg


http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum17.jpg


http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum18.jpg


http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum19.jpg


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http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum28.jpg


http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum29.jpg


http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum30.jpg

swoop
12-14-2010, 18:11
http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum31.jpg


http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum32.jpg


http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum33.jpg


http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum34.jpg


http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum35.jpg


http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum36.jpg


http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum37.jpg

filmfan
12-14-2010, 18:38
First, I would like to express my condolences on the stolen camera. Terrible news.
I like a few of these photos. However, a lot of them look very much like snap-shots. A point and shoot camera would do you just fine for photos like these. Looks like you need to get closer. Just some friendly critique. I am guilty of the same thing quite often as well and since I value critique very much, I thought I would reciprocate.

Phil_F_NM
12-14-2010, 19:28
Um, Swoop is a professional journalist who works for a large daily in NYC. He probably doesn't need to join the NPPA and look for inspiration there.

I think what he's showing us that the M9 is a capable tool for daily reportage at a serious publication, unlike the opinions of most naysayers.

He had most of his equipment stolen and is now making due with a great camera for his job. He's doing a good job at it too.

Phil Forrest

filmfan
12-14-2010, 19:32
Um, Swoop is a professional journalist who works for a large daily in NYC. He probably doesn't need to join the NPPA and look for inspiration there.

Most of these photos clearly lack many things. I don't care who his employer is. These look like my uncle Larry took them. Sorry, but no one ever accused me of not being honest, and I think it's for the best here.
[Edit: I hope the poster recognizes the value of critique and does not take this as anything personal]


I think what he's showing us that the M9 is a capable tool for daily reportage at a serious publication, unlike the opinions of most naysayers.


Any camera is a capable tool in the right hands. :rolleyes:

emdubya
12-14-2010, 19:52
Most of these photos clearly lack many things. I don't care who his employer is. These look like my uncle Larry took them. Sorry, but no one ever accused me of not being honest, and I think it's for the best here.
[Edit: I hope the poster recognizes the value of critique and does not take this as anything personal]

Any camera is a capable tool in the right hands. :rolleyes:

dude, if you want people to see this as a critique, rather than the broadside it clearly is, you should need to offer something more insightful than it "looks like my uncle Larry took them."

:p

CNNY
12-14-2010, 20:00
Wow, you've been all around town with that thing. It sure isn't collecting dust. What time span do these images represent?
To the critics, I would challenge anyone to rush around to this many locations and return with something decent from each one.

Phil_F_NM
12-14-2010, 20:03
Doing news photography is largely just going out and getting a shot, getting back to the desk & handing it off to an editor. Editors don't like artsy shots. How many truly compelling shots have you seen in a newspaper recently? The photos are there to add a visual dimension to the story, not to be art. Long form photojournalism can have compelling more artistic photos while daily news is largely snapshots or photos like snapshots. There is a difference between news reportage photography for a job and the compelling documentary style that people love. In a nutshell, a lot of news photos are boring but they are there to add context and another dimension.

Yes, any camera is capable in the right hands but the buzz in the news industry for the last 40 years is that to get work done you need a good SLR. If it were different, the Nikon F wouldn't have taken over and put rangefinders in a place of novelty, backup or long-form documentary at best. That's probably more-so today in our gear-oriented competitive world. And for some journalism, the rangefinder doesn't cut it. Can't get closer than .7 meters, can't use a lens longer than 135mm. This range accounts for most shots, but sometimes you need something different. Most working pro news photographers who have their own gear only own one system and that's usually Canon or Nikon due to the utility and ubiquity of the systems.

Phil Forrest

emdubya
12-14-2010, 20:03
P.S. I should add: there's definitely some nice shots here! I love the surfers coming out of the water; the guy sitting in the queue; the front of the off-track betting shop; the cop graduation? awards ceremony?; the crime scene with the cruiser out front; the guys comparing their betting stubs. I would have used any of the aforementioned in my paper back when I was an editor. And if you spelled your captions correctly, I would have given you a raise! :)

filmfan
12-14-2010, 20:04
dude, if you want people to see this as a critique, rather than the broadside it clearly is, you should need to offer something more insightful than it "looks like my uncle Larry took them."

:p

Please see my first post. [It's okay, can't win them all ;)]
About the "broadside"... I believe that harsh words can be very helpful when appropriate.

Doing news photography is largely just going out and getting a shot, getting back to the desk & handing it off to an editor. Editors don't like artsy shots.

This is good to know and I appreciate you clearing it up. I guess my real point was about the fact that, although the camera was stolen, any camera could take these shots so he should not fret about the loss of the 5D.

back alley
12-14-2010, 20:13
love the garage shot!

emdubya
12-14-2010, 20:20
Looks like you need to get closer.

Dear filmfan: this is the sum of your "critique." I stand by my original comment. :)

filmfan
12-14-2010, 20:22
Dear filmfan: this is the sum of your "critique." I stand by my original comment. :)

You don't make sense :D
I apologize for the derailment of this thread.

emdubya
12-14-2010, 20:24
You don't make sense :D

Then you're not trying hard enough.

mto'brien
12-14-2010, 20:26
my faves are: Guy sitting in the line, three cops getting citations, merv's bakery, two surfer dudes, garage, the otb, umbrella guy, union guy with bike horn, fire house, sea gull... wow, i guess i like a bunch of them. i wish my local had some interesting eye candy like those. nice work swoop. sorry about your gear getting ripped.

Phil_F_NM
12-14-2010, 20:32
I like most of the shots. I think you've done great in lieu of gear theft and using a camera which is just different in the news field.

Did you find yourself using just one focal length? Did you change lenses much?

Phil Forrest

SolaresLarrave
12-14-2010, 20:57
Either I have bad taste, or I think like swoop. Most of the photographs deserve a place in a wall to me. I may skip some of the buildings, but those photographs that include people look vibrant and intense. I can even hear their voices or, in the case of the girl at the mall, the musak.

Nice show of what you can do with your M9. No doubt you'd do just as well with a film Leica, Thanks for posting!

skibeerr
12-14-2010, 21:03
Guy sitting in the line! Great.

Spyro
12-14-2010, 21:32
Ι like the garage sign shot and the cops (?) ceremony. I absolutely hate the high iso ones and the colours generally look a bit washed out. Look at that santa uniform, it has lilac patches on it.

edit: ooops sorry, I assumed you were after some comments :)

250swb
12-14-2010, 23:33
First, I would like to express my condolences on the stolen camera. Terrible news.
I like a few of these photos. However, a lot of them look very much like snap-shots. A point and shoot camera would do you just fine for photos like these. Looks like you need to get closer. Just some friendly critique. I am guilty of the same thing quite often as well and since I value critique very much, I thought I would reciprocate.

I know what you mean. There is a vast difference between simply recording that an event took place and making a compelling journalistic image that tells at least part of the story.

There are a couple of nice photo's in the set, but I'm surprised a working photojournalist hasn't been far more brutal in editing them down. You should be your own best critic after all, or is that a facility we are losing with the unedited stream of conciousness that the internet encourages?

Steve

jbf
12-15-2010, 00:11
aye. ive been to a workshop or two and had professional editors cut me down. its normal. its healthy. its the only way to grow.

criticism is good. criticism that hurts is usually the ones that are the most important to listen to. regardless if you agree with it or not. more often than not even the most negative art critics responses on art/photos/whatever will have positive insight that we can take from it.

Matus
12-15-2010, 00:29
I guess the comments above are the reason why we have rather little professionals in photography around here showing their work. People are mostly not interested in direct critique from amateurs about the stuff they do for living.

To me personally - most photos are not interesting, but this is directly related to the fact that reportage photography does not attracts me as such. I actually think that in the line of the purpose intended many of the shots are very well composed (for example the fallen tree - it is as tight crop as possible showing the tree large enough to see in a small print in newspapers but still showing bit of the car on the right side and makes clear that there is some action being taken) - they give very fast the idea about "what is going on". To me that sounds like a necessary part of reportage shots.

noimmunity
12-15-2010, 01:37
Picture #22 in post#2 (the one of the female with a GAP shopping bag) is briiliant. Could be a poster for Snyder's 2004 Night of the Living Dead remake, Dawn of the Dead. Consumer zombies. The "joy to the world" bag in the right corner, coupled with the lost-looking gentleman in the left background really bring the point home.

(Clear proof to me, an amateur M8 user, that the frame lines on the M9 are MUCH more accurate at medium distance).

Ronald M
12-15-2010, 03:16
This is what is Leica was made for. A reflex camera is for "artsy" shots with perfect composition etc.

Nothing wrong with carrying a reflex if you need to cover an air show or sports event, but for what you need to do up to 135 mm, a Leica does very well.

Thanks for showing.

luuca
12-15-2010, 03:17
I agree with filmfan.

the shots seem to be only casual shots, without a minimum of care in composition and timing.
example: look at the pic of the surfer coming out the water.
In a shot like this there's no reason to have such a unstraight horizon (it doesn't add dynamism to the scene)... 30 seconds of PP would have fixed it.

a few are very interesting: the one with the 3 cops, the man with the umbrella, the fat guy on the chair... imho the others are not strong enough to describe the event.


ps: I'm very sad for your stolen 5D...

...
To the critics, I would challenge anyone to rush around to this many locations and return with something decent from each one.

I think you got the point: imho he didn't returned with something decent to be published on a newspaper.

newsgrunt
12-15-2010, 03:37
anyone know which paper Swoop works for ? would like to see how they run his photos

thx

isorgb
12-15-2010, 04:04
Doing news photography is largely just going out and getting a shot, getting back to the desk & handing it off to an editor. Editors don't like artsy shots. How many truly compelling shots have you seen in a newspaper recently? The photos are there to add a visual dimension to the story, not to be art. Long form photojournalism can have compelling more artistic photos while daily news is largely snapshots or photos like snapshots. There is a difference between news reportage photography for a job and the compelling documentary style that people love. In a nutshell, a lot of news photos are boring but they are there to add context and another dimension.

Phil Forrest

I can't agree with this. Why news photo would not will be art? Is news photo must be boring? I don't want to say that swoop photos from this thread are boring.
I have often saw interesting picture which ilustrate less interesting story, even boring story in newspaper.
I think daily news will not have to only snapshots.

Jamie123
12-15-2010, 04:31
These look like my uncle Larry took them.

Larry Towell? Larry Sultan?

Jamie123
12-15-2010, 04:45
People are mostly not interested in direct critique from amateurs about the stuff they do for living.

I think it's pretty much pointless to ask for any kind of critique from strangers on the internet. One should always seek critique from people whose opinion one respects. In real life I know better than to ask the person who just got a dslr and shoots flowers and sunsets for critique on my work. I simply don't care about their opinion and it's irrelevant to my work.
Most of the time on the internet you have no idea what the other person's taste and background is so why should you ask them what they think? It just doesn't make much sense.

JoeV
12-15-2010, 04:47
Umm, about that "critique"
Quote:
Originally Posted by filmfan http://www.rangefinderforum.com/forums/themes/graphite/buttons/viewpost.gif (http://www.rangefinderforum.com/forums/showthread.php?p=1491481#post1491481)
Most of these photos clearly lack many things. I don't care who his employer is. These look like my uncle Larry took them. Sorry, but no one ever accused me of not being honest, and I think it's for the best here.
[Edit: I hope the poster recognizes the value of critique and does not take this as anything personal]

Any camera is a capable tool in the right hands. :rolleyes:

dude, if you want people to see this as a critique, rather than the broadside it clearly is, you should need to offer something more insightful than it "looks like my uncle Larry took them."

Maybe Uncle Larry is a good photographer!

I like many of these images posted; my biggest gripe is there's too many of them, the OP should have submitted a link, or culled down the selection.

Best wishes to the OP, hoping you find continued professional success with your Leica.

~Joe

Spyro
12-15-2010, 04:54
I think it's pretty much pointless to ask for any kind of critique from strangers on the internet. One should always seek critique from people whose opinion one respects.

Getting a bit off topic, but you can respect someone over the internet too :)
You can be surprised by the backgrounds of people represented by silly avatars.

Jamie123
12-15-2010, 05:06
Getting a bit off topic, but you can respect someone over the internet too :)
You can be surprised by the backgrounds of people represented by silly avatars.

I'm (obviously) not saying you should disrespect people on the internet.

Sure, you can be surprised by the backgrounds of people on the internet but the key word here is surprise. Most of the time you just have no idea who you're talking to so there's no way you can put their critique into the right perspective.

kbg32
12-15-2010, 05:38
I live in NYC and recognize a lot of the images from stories I saw on the news. Being a paid photojournalist is not an easy job. One has to be prepared to move from one story to the next without having the time to make to informed decisive judgements in composition. Your job is to get images and get the job done quickly to illustrate the story at hand. One might not ever have the chance to come back with award winning imagery every time or have the time to spend getting them.

figfoto
12-15-2010, 05:42
I think the point of what the OP was making is that you can make do with a M9 for news reportage, and he proved it. Not all news photos have to be Pulitzer prize winners, some reportage photos do look like snapshots because they are there to help illustrate the article.

swoop
12-15-2010, 09:28
Wow, this thread took on a life of its own. First of all the thread was just supposed to be a display of some M9 images. That's all really, but used in a "photojournalism" sense. But I guess me being a photojournalist is up for debate.

I don't mind the criticism and when posting images online that's an open invitation to it. And I've been told many times before by people online that I suck. I'm used to it. I'll never be as good as Bresson or Winogrand, or Tyler Hicks, that guy can take a photo of anything in any light and it's the most beautiful thing I've ever seen. I don't pretend to be, I just bring my camera with me and check stuff out. I am not offended in the least. I've already reached the top of the field. There's nothing more for me to aspire to other than trying to take a great photo day after day.

Not everyday working for a newspaper is exciting. Especially for a daily metro. It's not all conflict zones. A lot of it is boring. A lot of it is red tape trying to get access, a lot of the assignments are run of the mill. Especially real estate. Even murder scenes are dull. It's a lot of cops standing around and yelling at you. If you get within 50 yards of an accident or crime scene, consider yourself lucky. Not a week goes by that I'm not threatened to be arrested.

Below are some of the images I posted before but with links to the stories from other newspapers so that some of you can get an idea of the kind of images that come out of a large daily newspaper. It isn't always art. I do try. But the big limiting factors are getting there in a timely fashion. How much time I can spend there before I'm sent to another story. The lighting conditions, and how much access do I have. I also only get like 20 minutes to edit them before I have to submit. I wish I could put more post processing love into a lot of photos before they're sent in but I rarely get the time to.

All of the images in the thread were taken over a two week period. Also I use mostly a 35 'cron v4 or 50 'cron lastest version. I plan on replacing my Canon system with Nikon within the next month or two. A change may do me good. I've worked with both. And truthfully regardless of which DSLR I won, I end up using the M9 for 80% of my work anyway. Especially personal stuff.



http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum31.jpg
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/11/nyregion/11flatbush.html?scp=1&sq=flatbush%20gardens&st=cse



http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum15.jpg
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/09/nyregion/09murder.html?_r=1&scp=1&sq=merv%27s%20bakery&st=cse

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/ny_crime/2010/12/08/2010-12-08_mervyn_johnson_owner_of_mervs_bakery_in_brookly n_shot_dead_outside_crown_heights.html



http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum6.jpg
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/14/nyregion/14stab.html?scp=1&sq=brooklyn%20parents&st=cse

http://www.nydailynews.com/ny_local/2010/12/13/2010-12-13_brooklyn_man_fatally_stabs_mother_slashes_fathe r_before_throwing_himself_into_su.html

http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/brooklyn/maniac_kills_ma_jySGY0myb13qEzUCcOvjAI



http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum14.jpg
http://www.nyc.gov/html/fdny/html/events/2010/092010a.shtml



http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum4.jpg
http://www.nydailynews.com/ny_local/2010/12/14/2010-12-14_school_bus_with_nine_students_crashes_into_bank _in_brooklyn_driver_hurt_police_s.html

http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/brooklyn/injured_seriously_in_brooklyn_school_cn4W1FnlTrKlQ aE75nSa3J



http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum7.jpg
http://www.ny1.com/content/130520/five-injured-in-willliamsbridge-bakery-fire



http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum16.jpg
http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/brooklyn/flame_thrower_wlknaE7wd4MKhS25GXdGfP

http://www.nydailynews.com/ny_local/2010/12/08/2010-12-08_firefighters_rescue_four_people_trapped_on_top_ floor_of_burning_threestory_brook.html



http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum28.jpg
http://www.nypost.com/video/?channel=PostUsFeed&clipid=1458_1105801&bitrate=300&format=flash



http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum32.jpg
http://www.nydailynews.com/ny_local/2010/11/29/2010-11-29_drag_race_causes_fatal_crash_killing_beloved_yo ung_brooklyn_dad_on_deathtrap_str.html

http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/queens/drag_racing_blafor_fatal_queens_9buRTHnFpfWxDTbTdl cLIN

mto'brien
12-15-2010, 09:58
again, nice work. i especially like the emt grad salute shot.

scottwallick
12-15-2010, 12:18
Below are some of the images I posted before but with links to the stories from other newspapers so that some of you can get an idea of the kind of images that come out of a large daily newspaper.

This is the most interesting and thoughtful post I have yet to read on this forum. Thank you for sharing. Your images coupled with links to the stories, your own thoughts, very enjoyable. Well done and, again, thanks.

newsgrunt
12-15-2010, 12:59
but they're not his photos. I'd like to see a link to see how his paper, whether he's staff or contract or freelance, uses them. is it the nyt, daily news, ny post ? curious minds yano :)

nobbylon
12-15-2010, 14:00
Although I don't want to sound critical in any way toward someone who obviously makes a living taking pics, for me, this set does not sell or demonstrate a €5500 camera. They really could have been shot on anything. Perhaps that's what we are all missing? The fact that you can use an M9 as a point and shoot and get a reasonable image that's usable for paper work.
The more I see from the M9 the more i'm convinced it's an overpriced luxury item.
My friend has been a pro photog for over 20 yrs now, fashion, advertising, reportage etc and is a Leica film fan. He uses a D3x for most of his work these days and recently bought an M9. He shot 400 frames with it and packed it back in the box. He told me that the images just look too digital and the quality is not in the same league as the Nikon. He did qualify this statement by saying that the quality was good enough for normal use and for myself would be excellent however side by side to a D3x file there was no contest.

newsgrunt
12-15-2010, 14:09
I had an M9 on loan earlier this year to try out since I was considering adding it to my next mass gear purchase. While I liked it overall, the hi iso performance is perhaps two generations behind and the buffer is too low to be practical. No spray and pray shooting but single shot firing and anyone who has shot any type of news event of significance will know, 8 frames, shot in single mode, will get eaten up quickly.

Significantly improve the hi iso performance ( ie-3200 without batting an eye kind of quality) and increase the buffer likewise and maybe the fringing as well and the camera would easily be worth the coin they're asking. Enough so that I would spend my own $ on one.

Colin Corneau
12-15-2010, 14:22
The OP set up the context of this thread by stating he makes his living as a photojournalist, and that the pictures posted were examples of photojournalism using an M9.

Posting images in this forum by definition invites discussion and criticism (not attack, criticism).

That said, I'm with filmfan and newsgrunt...I'd be curious to know where he works.
And, I'm sorry I can't gush -- the pics are entirely standard, unremarkable images. Some are nice, all are competently made. But it's nothing that can't be done with an LX-3 and as newsgrunt mentions, Leica's digital M's are at least a generation behind technically.

I do like the idea of slowing down, in a news environment, and taking a more thoughtful approach. Rangefinders are useful for that.
But so is using a film camera, so is using a P&S, so is setting your MarkIV on single-shot...the list goes on.

uinku
12-15-2010, 15:28
Yeah, I'm still not understanding the OP's original photos and intent. If swoop brought up this NYTimes photo (http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/09/nyregion/09murder.html?_r=2&scp=1&sq=merv%27s%20bakery&st=cse) as a comparison

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2010/12/09/nyregion/murder/murder-articleLarge.jpg

to his:

http://www.kmnyc.com/pics/forum15.jpg

I would say the comparison is one of contrast and not of similarities. The former NYT shot was done in better light, composed much stronger, and the idea of using shadows to signifiy the is a nice touch. Props to Chester Higgins.

Yes time and securing access are factors when it comes to assignments, but that's part of the job and sometimes one needs to be more aggressive or clever to get a better shot--hence the Capa jokes on page 1.

Was the original intent to show that one can shoot news with an M9? If so we're past that discussion ever since newspapers published amateur shots from cellphone cameras. Furthermore, these photos haven't represented the M9 in good light.

Frontman
12-15-2010, 16:00
First, I would like to express my condolences on the stolen camera. Terrible news.
I like a few of these photos. However, a lot of them look very much like snap-shots. A point and shoot camera would do you just fine for photos like these. Looks like you need to get closer. Just some friendly critique. I am guilty of the same thing quite often as well and since I value critique very much, I thought I would reciprocate.


Agreed. I used to work in law enforcement in the city, and I regularly ran across news photographers. The best of the (for the quality of their photography) were the kind who were always in my way, and pretended to be a little hard of hearing if I asked them to "please step back".

HCB himself was a photojournalist, and he was fearless enough when he wanted to get a good shot. If an officer tells you to step back or to move along, you are probably in a good spot to take a picture.

As for the technical quality of the pictures, they are impressive, but the Canon would have gotten "closer" due to it's longer zoom lenses and faster operation. Personally, I dislike DSLR cameras, but I must admit that they are well-suited for this type of work.

Colin Corneau
12-15-2010, 18:50
I want to add that my opinion was in the context of photojournalism...as images on their own there's nothing wrong with 'em. But as I said, that was the context they were presented in.