I don’t make street images as I used to (actually I have almost abandoned street photography). But I have noticed that when it rains, I get an urge to go out and shoot some street photos. Rain is probably my primary (and only) reason for practicing street photography.
On a rainy day I usually take the Ricoh GX200 with me since I can easily operate it single handed, but this time I wanted to use a film camera since I much prefer the look of film for a street image. It was raining heavily so my first efforts with the Leica 6 lead to completely wet camera. Now, the Leica M is built like a tank but its not weather proof. So, the Olympus XA was employed.
Its the smallest rangefinder camera ever made with a very good 35mm f/2.8 lens. It was easier for me to protect it from and it is a stealthy camera which draws no attention at all. By setting focus to 3 meters and aperture at f/5.6 I was ready to shoot (the XA has these both setting painted orange for obvious reasons).
It is an aperture priority camera, so I usually use a 400 ISO film to have a good shutter speed. My choice of film was the Ilford XP2 400 (one of my last rolls) which I can quickly develop in a lab (its a C41 b&w film).
Walking around with the XA was a real joy. You take a shot and easily put the camera in your jacket pocket to protect it from rain. People didn’t really notice the camera and when they did it rarely drew their interest. I actually had a short conversation with a person who wanted to take a look at it and when he saw no LCD screen he was actually surprised and asked me if this toy really can take photos. It happens more and more with film cameras these days !!
I hadn’t used the Olympus XA for quite some time, but I find it an excellent camera for street shooting on a rainy day (and not only), so I will make sure to remember taking it in with me again soon.
Enjoy the rest of the images.
(c)2013 Konstantinos Besios. All Rights Reserved.