These are the first shots from my new to me Nikon F3 that I picked up at Adorama. After considering selling my Leica M6 for a couple of months, I finally did. Then I used a tenth of the funds from selling the Leica to pick up the Nikon F3 and a fistful of film.
I’ve been struggling with this decision for some time really. I loved my Leica M6, but I think I loved the idea of it more. It gave me gorgeous pictures and felt solid in my hands, but as I started using my Nikon FM2n I found my style was more suited to the Nikon. I never liked taking vertical shots with the Leica; it always felt awkward when I did. Even worse, the LED circle metering system on the M6 TTL never felt as intuitive to me as an analog needle (Olympus OM-1) or the +/- (Nikon) display. When I shoot with the FM2n, it feels like an extension of me. I don’t have to think. It’s indestructible and doesn’t draw a lot of attention like the Leica did.
Most people told me “You don’t sell Leica. You don’t sell a classic.” But sometimes you do. And I did. I haven’t regretted it for a moment. A camera is just a tool to help you make the photograph that you want to make, but it’s got to feel right in your hands. Sure the Leica looked cool on the bookcase (which is where it spent most of its time lately), but my cameras are not made for display. They are made to be used and used hard. I’m a photographer, not a collector.
So far, I love the F3. I’ve only run one roll of color through it, but it’s every bit as solid as the FM2n. These are low resolution drug store scans, but I have a roll of Tri-X 400 in it now, which will give me a better idea of what it’s capable of producing.
Wet Pavement, Red Lights, and Girl with Umbrella walking in Nolita
Vintage Green Cadillac in East Village
This is the very first picture I took with the Nikon F3. I can’t imagine anything better for a first shot than Kate sipping sparkling rose at Barbuto in the West Village.
Roa Bird on the side of a building in the East Village
Paramount Textile/Boltex Textile’s Green Wall and Door in Tribeca
This lion water fountain was one of my favorite things in my favorite park as a kid. Now, every time I see it on the back of this truck, I stop and Kate say’s “Go ahead, take a picture of it.” And I take another picture of it. I’ve probably taken 8-10 pictures of this thing that all look the same. I like this one the best though, even if it’s slightly askew.
Jane Knox Clown Art on The Mars Bar Wall East Village
All images shot with the Nikon F3 and Nikkor 28mm f2.8 Ai-S lens on Kodak Portra 160NC film developed at scanned at Duane Reade. These are very low res scans, but I’m happy with the F3.