Last week I said goodbye to my beloved Leica M7. A camera that has been with me for around 5 years, and during that time has produced some of my all time favorite images. I know most people dislike the M7. The general idea behind a Leica film camera with Aperture Priority seems foreign to them. It has electronics for Christ sake. It’s as if it’s un-true to it’s heritage. But in all honesty it was an absolute godsend when shooting on set, on the street, and when shooting family pics in mixed lighting. All I had to worry about was focusing and composition. No fussing with the meter. The thing exposed perfectly. Every. Single. Time. That paired with the 0.85 magnified viewfinder made it perfect for shooting 28mm and up. The finder patch was the biggest you could get, when it came to modern Leica’s.
Speaking of the finder, it was huge and clear. With no flaring and, in my opinion, just perfect. I got so used to shooting with a 0.85 magnification that I had a hard time shooting my Leica M9 and M262 with their 0.62 finders. I ended up having to purchase a 1.25x magnifier, just so I could have the same magnification that I was accustomed to.
So if I loved the camera so much, and by the looks of it I still do, why in gods name did I sell it? Well. I just didn’t have the time to shoot film anymore. I have tons of film at home waiting to be processed. Something along the lines of 30 rolls just waiting for me to invest an hour or two here or there just to develop them. But with work being as crazy as it is, and I’m constantly flying in and out of Toronto, I have little time to invest in shooting and developing my film. My time is spent elsewhere, and the Leica M262 has seen a lot more use over the last year than the film camera. In the end I couldn’t justify holding onto it and having it collect dust. I would much rather it go to a new home and be used by someone who might love it as much as I did. Hopefully the buyer does.
The M7 traveled with me everywhere. Ireland, Los Angeles, New York, Morocco, Paris, Norway, Iceland, Portugal, Spain and the list keeps going. It never faltered in any environment it was thrown in. And to the last day of ownership, she performed beautifully as if it was new. I’ll miss her, and I hope to one day invest the time to shoot more film. But I don’t see it happening anytime soon.