My first Leica was a M6 TTL silver edition – an analogue camera. A classic camera. The way to my first Leica was not a straight line. I think it all began around 2010, as Fuji announced the X100. I fell for the camera and since then I have used various models of the X-system. The reason why I fell for the X100 was partly the esthetics of the camera – it is a beautiful little camera – but more important; the X100 made me rediscover photography again. Suddenly I just felt like shooting every day, and it was much owed to the camera. I soon got the feeling that it was a “mini-Leica”. Of course – I had never shot with a Leica – but the Leica had always been there in my mind. A camera that was not reachable for me. Now I know that an X100 is nothing like a Leica – but back then I didn’t have a clue…
When Fujifilm later released the X-Pro 2 I was sure that I had the perfect camera. Rangefinder style – almost like a real Leica. But then again, I had never tried a real rangefinder camera. I started thinking. Perhaps a cheap analogue Leica M would be a good way to test a real rangefinder. I was already thinking about going analogue again to slow down my photography. I felt that the modern high tech cameras made photography to simple. It was just to point and shoot – and I got a perfect result every time (at least from a technical point of view). Nice – but not fun. I took more and more pictures – but at the same time it was getting more and more boring. It wasn’t a challenge any more. Maybe a Leica could change that? Well. After a couple of months combing the internet for Leica information I finally settled on a Leica M6 TTL with a .72 magnificaion rangefinder. The lens I was going for was a Voigtländer 40/1,4. I found them on the Swedish version of ebay for a good price and pushed ”buy”.
Shooting with my M6 proved to be exactly what I was hoping. Focusing and composing with a true rangefinder is something else. It also slowed down my photography, as I had hoped. But I got one thing wrong. I hadn’t done my research. The Leica M doesn’t have framelines for a 40mm lens. Not at big problem, but I felt I didn’t have full control of the coposition. I ended up selling the 40/1,4 and instead bought two Zeiss-lenses; 50/2 and 35/2,8. Two great lenses for a resonable price.
The problem now was that I realized that I had to get a digital Leica. The film process was after all too slow for me. So after about six months I found me a M8. The M6 later was traded in – with the M8 – for a M9. But that was a desicion I regret. The M6 could not be replaced with a digital Leica. I just had to have one again someday. That day was a couple of years later, as I found a nice silver M6TTL again. This time with a .58 magnification rangefinder – which works better with my glasses. This M6 I will keep. Period!
Finally a couple of M6 links: