Collecting Memories

My love for photography started early. As a ten-year-old, I was always fascinated by my father’s travel photographs. By 18, I was building opportunities to work as a professional photographer while dabbling in documentary and portraiture, before shifting my focus to fashion as well.

Leica has been a predominant part of my personal work. Collecting Memories, an ongoing project, required a camera which was inconspicuous in its nature and yet gave me control over my visual narrative.

To fulfill that need, I used the Leica M6 TTL. Along with it, I have mostly been using the Leica 35mm Summicron and 50mm Summilux lenses.


Leica M6 TTL with Leica 35mm Summicron & Leica 50mm Summilux

--Self Portrait 2019

However, I had another major requirement which I wanted to address in my choice of camera for this project. Control over every facet of photography has been very important to me over the years. I prefer to have a hand in as many aspects of the final photograph I take, rather than chimping or letting automated systems make the decisions for me.


Leica M6 TTL + 35mm Summicron using Ilford HP5 Plus

Leica M6 TTL + 35mm Summicron using Kodak Tri-X

The Leica M6 TTL is a mechanical camera and can function without batteries. Furthermore, the footprints of the 35mm Summicron and 50mm Summilux are very small, and yet they balance really well with this camera. My choice of tools for this project didn't just allow me to maintain control over every aspect of my photography, but provided me with enough versatility to not feel limited by them as well.


Leica M6 TTL + 35mm Summicron using Kodak Tri-X

Leica M6 TTL + 35mm Summicron using Kodak Tri-X

Leica M6 TTL + 50mm Summilux using Kodak Tri-X

Leica M6 TTL + 35mm Summicron using Kodak Tri-X

It goes to show that as long as you don't let your tools define you, your choices can really complement your exploration of various passions in your work. My choice of camera and lenses together allowed me to enjoy a unique sense of minimalism while working on 'Collecting Memories'.

Besides, with sufficient practice of zone focusing and familiarity with your camera's ergonomics, replacing the work of automated systems with your own instincts will eventually just become a matter of muscle memory.


Leica M6 TTL + 35mm Summicron using Ilford HP5 Plus

Leica M6 TTL + 35mm Summicron using Rollei Infrared Film

In the end, even though this project is yet to be completed, there's a lot I've already learnt from it.

Ever since I was a young enthusiast, I had been very interested in the techniques and processes of photography used over the last century and a half. However, modern projects rarely ever give us the time to dive into the slower pace which older techniques need to put them into practice.

The process of developing and printing the photographs alone has really helped me in slowing down my approach towards the project. But, this in turn helped me appreciate each photograph in this collection much deeper than ever before.

Ultimately, photographers are introspective people. We use what's outside to reflect what's inside us. Slowing down and returning to roots, especially in photography, can lead to surprising results.

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Comments
12/28/2020 9:54 AM
very pernicious..!!