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  • Writer's pictureTuananh

The King. The Master. The Classic

April 20, 2015

The King.  The Master.  The Classic.

Not too often in a Leica photographer's lifetime will they have a chance to own their ultimate dream lens.  It took me over 15 years to truly feel like I have an understanding and control of the rangefinder.  To master its dials, its strict focus, and inherent compositions are a must, but one must also comprehend its history, image style, and lens' characteristics to truly merit this art.  It is a privilege to have the Leica as my paintbrush and with a little bit of talent I hope to make lasting images that will be an imprint of my vision on this lifetime. 

I have searched for over a decade to acquire the legendary "Three Kings" of the lens by Leitz:  the King of the Night (Noctilux "The Final 100th"), the King of Bokeh (35mm Summicron, Series IV), and the King of Portraits (90mm Summicron).  These optics need no introduction, as they are the glorified gods of all optics....they truly are the Kings!  However, as my craft grew and evolved, so must the tools that I need to express my art.  Life changes; fluctuates like a sinusoid, there are moments of madness and then peace succumbs the next.  Serenity is never good to me, I find solace as meek as a clover, but when I witness it, I am at its complete awe and surrender.  It is in these moments, an expression, or even an inspiration, will arrive so easily like a feather dancing along the crested sunlight of a window blind creeping and easing its golden rays into the corner of my eyes.  It was time.  It was time to finally accept the quesiton to the riddle of my craft and give it a solid echoing answer.  The King of Bokeh and the King of Portraits must be replaced, and in its replacement will not be Kings or gods, but legends in their own rights.  These are Leica's rarest and most prestigious offsprings, they are Walter Mandler's "favorite" and masterpieces along with their Noctilux contemporary.  These are the lenses that one can only dream of attaining within a lifetime, they are called The Master (75mm Summilux, "Wetzler Final Edition") and The Classic (35mm Summilux, "Double AA").  The "luxes" have opened an entirely new but crucial adaptation to my photography.  I truly feel that these legacy glass are the exact notes that will truly help refresh and polish my masterpieces even further.  Make no mistake, that their is always a huge learning curve at different focal lengths and aperture, but this evolution seemed much more natural as they mimick the flavor of the Noctilux. 

In this excitement, I am anew and I, no longer, am limited by the ordinary of kings and gods, but now my limit is only circumvented by the "lux", or light. 

Three Kings

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