Elliott Erwitt: What equipment does he use?

Discussion in 'Leica and Rangefinders' started by david enzel, May 26, 2002.

  1. I recently discovered Elliott Erwitt's work. I gather he uses Leica for at least some of his work. Some photos look like they were made with short range telephotos. Does anybody know what camera bodies and lenses he uses? I am curious.
     
  2. In his book, "Personal Exposures," he states he usually uses a
    Leica with a 50mm, occasionally a 90mm.

    <p>

    Regards,
     
  3. Whoops, I forgot to mention Leica "M" cameras. He didn't specify
    what version, but I strongly suspect an M3.
     
  4. Don't know exactly what he uses, but when I recently saw him showing
    his work at a show in Seattle, he had a great comment about that.
    After showing several photos from a series he did on nudist colonies,
    someone asked him what *he* was wearing on the shoot. Erwitt's
    response was: "A Leica."
     
  5. pcg

    pcg

    In his early career he used a IIIF, then a IIIG w/ 50mm. He switched to an M3 in the mid-50s. No
    idea of what he's using now!
     
  6. For his personal/B&W stuff he has always used Leica RF - but at least
    in the 70's for commercial assignments he also carried a couple of
    large cases loaded with almost the full Canon F-1 line (every lens from
    16mm to 300mm, mutiple bodies, motors, prisms, etc.), and he's also
    worked with 6x9 (and larger) view cameras. He's also made at least one
    motion picture documentary.

    <p>

    cf. "Elliot Erwitt: the personal image" - Alskog books, c. 1976.
     
  7. Erwitt's recent book "Elliot Erwitt Snaps" indicates that most of
    the photos in the book were taken with a well-worn Leica M3 with
    50mm lens and Tri-X or HP4 developed in Microdol.

    <p>

    http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0714841501/qid=1022447816/sr=8
    -1/ref=sr_8_1/102-4020188-4103350
     
  8. And since we're talking about Elliot Erwitt, I should mention I think his book
    "Personal Exposures" is by far his best one, with "Snaps" second. Other
    Erwitt books I've looked at are "To the Dogs," his museum shots book, and
    his lovers book.

    <p>

    He might have a beach theme book too, but the photos in "Personal
    Exposures" just feel, well, more personal.

    <p>

    My 2ยข.
     
  9. I have Erwitt's book called "Between the Sexes." It has many
    wonderful images, of which quite a few are quite funny.
     
  10. Yes, "Between the Sexes" is his lover's book I was thinking about.

    <p>

    I first saw his work in a little gallery in Bath, England, during a vacation. I was blown
    away...I slowly started laughing, and by the end, there were tears in my eyes as I
    was trying to to laugh too loud.

    <p>

    And since my last post, I was thinking why I thought "Personal Exposures" was his
    best book, since some of the images from that book are in his others. I think partly
    it's his funny and sad commentary in the front, and partly the rhythm and
    juxtaposition of the images.

    <p>

    He really has a saddness in him, and also a real tenderness and wit. I think he must
    have spent much time alone to get the shots he has. He is unique, and one of my
    favorite photographers.
     
  11. Whoops. My last post should read "there were tears in my eyes as I was trying NOT
    to to laugh too loud."
     
  12. In his book "Private Experience" from 1974 it states on pg 81 that
    he mostly used a Leica M3 body for his personal pictures and mainly
    a 50mm Summicron f/2 collapsible. He also has a 35mm and 90mm (type
    not specified). He uses Tri-X rated at EI 400 most of the time.
     
  13. Just this morning I bought the italian version of the review 'PHOTO'. Answering about a current exposition here in Italy he says: "in my early years I used a Leica M3, then a Leica M6. Later also a Contax G2. Recently I use with pleasure also the Canon EOS especially because of the very useful 28-135 f3.5-5-6 Stabilized (!!). Other lenses: for Leica the Summilux 50mm f1.4 and the Tele-Elmarit 90mm f2.8. For Contax the Sonnar 45mm f2.0 and the Sonnar 90mm f2.8. Film: Kodak Tri-X developed in D-76. This is about my personal work. For the commercial work I use all the job needs (medium and large format, colors film, slides... I have to satisfy my clients)".
    That's all. Interesting.
     
  14. He apparently uses Leicas and Canon EOS, whatever the
    current models are. He's not short a few bucks but also not as
    quick on his feet, so AF and a longish zoom come in handy
    (blasphemy I hear you shout...!). I don't have either of his
    excuses yet often rely on my 200mm to stay candid without
    getting slapped...Oh and I did win a prize in a competition he
    judged (smug bastard...)
    http://www.colemanphoto.co.uk/about.html
     
  15. hi..i'm a free-lance photo-assistant in los angeles.
    i have worked with elliot when he has come out to los angeles

    there is not a leica anywhere near him...he shoots canon and he
    loves them...he uses two zooms but mainly canons 17-?(35) and
    then a mid range zoom, he loves that lens....his eyes are not
    what they used to be so he uses the cameras on auto focus....he
    shoots tri-x at 400....the only equipment that is old school is his
    old gitzo that he carries in this old shoulder case....i assist a lot
    of "name" photographers...and rarely and i mean rarely does
    anyone use a leica...they are slow, zooms are handy, and they
    don't have autofocus, it's about getting the picture and the new
    slr's are just so efficient and fast that thest people don't have the
    time to mess around with the leica.....the few times i have been
    on a job with a photographer using a 35mm rangefinder...they
    have been using either the contax g2 (most of the time) or that
    ricoh rangefider.....
     

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