Brendan Gara Photography

zeiss love

Jonathan and friend


I’ve shown this one before, but thought I’d brag a bit.  It’s a shot of seagulls over Ilfracombe harbour, shot on one of our first visits here before moving down.  We had just had chips with curry sauce (I’m northern) and decided to sit a while and watch the harbour activities. Shot on Tri-X with a 50mm Zeiss Sonnar- a lens that is almost permanently attached to my M6.

50mm is a view I like, I guess it’s because the first proper camera I ever had (a zenit EM) came with a 50mm prime lens like most 1970s-80s cameras, long before the “kit zoom” made an entrance.  So 50mm is probably hard wired into my visual system, along with 28mm (wide, but not stupidly, weird wide), the second lens I ever bought for the second camera I had (a Praktica BC something with an “A” setting).

I wrote earlier about selling my 35mm zeiss lens, I don’t regret that as I just can’t see in that format, it’s a little bit too wide, but not wide enough.  Every system I own seems to fall into the equivalent of 28/50 and occasionally 90, apart from that damned little fuji which is stuck on 35mm- when will they bring one out with a 50mm or a 28mm.

I should get the M6 serviced as the 50 mm frameline doesn’t work properly so I get the 50/75 and the 28 lines showing in the viewfinder all the time.  Problem is I can’t think when I would be able to let go of it for the three weeks I’d need to send it away for servicing!

Anyway back to the picture- it got selected by Carl Zeiss for their new museum in Oberkochen, Germany, as one of about 40 or so images for a rolling slideshow on a 4k display.  No payment, but it’s cool to think Ilfracombe seagulls are on show in Germany at the home of quality optics.  Nice lens that sonnar.


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