A Dog’s Best Friend

black-and-white street photography by Markus Hartel, New York City

The Saga Continues
While the Leica is in the shop, I got permission to use my wife’s Voigtlander Bessa R3a along with the 28mm lens, not too fast at f3.5, but what the hell, there’s plenty of light out there right now.

Since the R3a doesn’t sport framelines wider than 40mm, I used the accommodating Voigtlander metal viewfinder, which is very bright and contrasty – honestly, brighter than the built-in viewfinder on my Leica M6 TTL. Oftentimes I don’t use a viewfinder anyways, so I don’t have trouble with that.

There I go, snapping away, finishing off my wife’s roll (Kodak 160VC) and happen to walk across our “lab around the corner” after work. “papi, papi, papi” I heard. Mind you, I live in a hispanic neigbourhood and usually don’t pay attention to some language I don’t understand.
Until somebody grabbed me at my sleeve, I recognized the lab lady’s kid “my mom was looking for you”. “Can you develop some b/w for me?” she asked… “sure” I replied and started rewinding the Bessa, in order to get the color roll developed.

After like 5 turns, the rewind crank broke off. Fuck, the second camera breaking on me within a week. The design of this piece is especially delicate, the folding crank has a hole in it, in order to reveal a screw’s head. Now, if the screw’s head would be shorter, the crank won’t need a hole, thus be sturdier. Interestingly, Voigtlander has changed the design on the newer Bessa models.

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11 Replies to “A Dog’s Best Friend”

  1. How lucky!!! Always beautiful and impressive photography despite the camera! Keep up the good work and good luck for your cameras 🙂

  2. Broke the wife’s camera! Sounds like you’re in a camera black hole.
    I broke the rewind crank on my R2 recently.
    Photo Village carried the part and fixed it on the spot for about $15.
    About 10 years ago was in Italy with my wife. She was there on business. Managed to drop the Canon A-1 which killed it. Got it fixed when I got back. Than took out the F-1 only to trip crossing the street as my wife was distracting me to look in a store window. Spent the rest of the trip using the Leicas and stopped window shopping.

  3. I really liked this entry. It’s like a miniature story to go along with an unrelated-looking photo.Although, what else happened to the kid? Where was mami from?
    It just makes me think… damn, I gotta move to a big city. There aren’t many hispanics in my white picket fence suburb.

  4. Markus this is another gem, I love all the characters in this shot, the bearded lady?? the guy midshot looking at the dog, (he makes it special) and the the female following, I especially like the fact this just oozes life in all it’s variety, I simply have to go to NYC, I just have to sell the kids or the dog to fund it!
    Bad luck with the voigtlander, methinks the term albatross might be on the money for you and cameras. Take care

  5. thanks all – the Voigtländer is fixed already, thanks to the fab
    service of Panorama camera here in NYC. They put a solid chrome
    crank on there, which feels its going to outlast the camera.
    lemme know when you’ve sold the kids, so we can meet to shoot 😛

  6. @ Craig – the rewind mechanism in the Leica gave up, I bought this camera used about 3 years ago
    @Ed
    no she didn’t kick my b*tt, but was wondering if I treat my cameras in a certain way (actually, they get lots of use, but I’m pretty careful)

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