Monochrome M In Yellowstone
On a recent trip through Montana and Wyoming, I had the good fortune of stopping off in Yellowstone. The first and oldest National Park in the U.S. IMO it is the best National Park to visit for a photographer, or for that manner, just about anyone who doesn't have an issue with altitude sickness. I had brought along my Nikon gear, the D4 and the D800e, for wildlife and landscapes, but on a last minute lark, I decided to bring the Leica Monochrome M along for the ride. I brought two lenses, both Voigtlanders, the 25mm f/2.8, and the new chrome 50mm 1.5. I personally brought it along for the anticipated snowy days that were being forecasted. Truth be told, I want to see if the Monochrome was up to the task of wildlife shooting and landscapes in a harsh environment. My only use so far of the Monochrome had been night city shooting, with the exception of a trip to California, which allowed me to try it out for some landscape shooting. Most of the days in Yellowstone were a bit on the gloomy side. We had some snowy days, and moments of sunlight brilliance. Demanding light conditions for any camera out there. My big issue with Leica's in general are that they are not very user friendly when you are trying to adjust expoure compensation. I let the images ride without adjusting for exposure compensation, and figured that I might be able to rework the images in Lightroom, seeing that I shot everything in raw. Most of the images shown here were shot in overcast conditions, with snow falling. Catching moving wildlife in action is quite difficult when using manual focusing, and with all Leica's, manual focusing is all that you get to work with. With a little help from zone focusing, and trying to anticipate distance with a moving animal, I was able to capture a coyote running by. The poor fella had mange, and I can't imagine how he is surviving the winter in Yellowstone. Truth be told, I did like using the Monochrome in Yellowstone, and I would recommend those who have access to any Leica cameras, to give wildlife a go with manual focusing. It can be maddening, because you do not have access to fast auto focusing, but it will hone your skills as a photogrpaher. And that is something we are always trying to perfect.