The Art of the Leica M-Lens
The M-System stands for exceptional photography - with M-Lenses playing an essential part in it. Each M-Lens has its very own character, just like the numerous people who work on it.
Peter Karbe perfectly represents this “non-quantifiable human element” at Leica. He and his colleagues at the department of optical engineering are responsible for the evolution of the M-System and the M-Lenses. They are laying the foundations so that new M-Lenses can be produced from a unique combination of high-technology and craftsmanship. At the Leica headquarters in Wetzlar, he gave us an insight into his work.
“An M-Lens is an investment with a future.”
All M-Lenses built since 1954 can be combined with any M-System camera. This mix of backward compatibility and longevity means that M-Lenses are being passed down from generation to generation.
“This challenges us to look for solutions that didn’t exist before.”
To evolve a lens also means to give it more power. But despite the higher imaging performance, the compact M-Lenses must not exceed a certain size - otherwise the entire system will no longer work.
100 YEARS OF LEICA PHOTOGRAPHY - "36 ICONIC PHOTOS"
“Creativity starts in the mind.”
The fast M-Lenses make it possible to use depth of field as a special design tool. The photographer learns how to set accents, direct the viewer's gaze and thus tell stories without using words.
The M-System shapes the way the photographer sees the world. It improves his photography, just as a fountain pen improves his handwriting. Even though the M-System can be challenging at the beginning, after some time you won't want to go back.