Photographer G K Lee Tries the New Russar+ Lens on his Leica M6

G K Lee. is a New York-based photographer with a lifelong passion for his craft and for music. He took the Russar+ Lens out for a spin around the city by trying it to his Leica M6! Beautiful wide angle shots were captured while accompanied by two models from Silent Models NY.

Model Ulla Reiss

Hello G K, tell us a little bit about yourself.

Way to start with the hardest question! I suppose it’s best to begin with the basics – by day I work as a creative & user experience strategist at digital agency Createthe Group, specializing in fashion & luxury. Outside of that, I freelance as a photographer. Photography has been a lifelong passion of mine and over the years it evolved very organically into somewhat of a second job. It’s been amazing and I’ve been fortunate enough to have my work featured in places such as the NY Times, The Cools, and NOVASTYLE. I also really love music, especially house and electronic, so the rest of my free time is usually spent looking for new tracks to listen to or DJ’ing parties with my friends.

Models Ulla Reiss & Kelly Spronk

We have seen you in the NYC Lomography store a lot of times when you drop off your film for developing. How did you get involved in Lomography and how has your learning curve been since the first time we saw you here?

I actually learned about Lomography many years ago from my dear friend and producer, Caitlin Biskup. She had bought a couple of rolls of film from the store as a Secret Santa gift for one of our Art Directors and I’ve been hooked ever since! The store does such a fantastic job on the development and high-res scans of the negatives that it’s hard to imagine going anywhere else.

Around the same time that I first started coming to the store, I switched from a SLR camera system to a rangefinder one. That’s definitely been the biggest challenge for me, as it’s a completely different way of seeing. With an SLR what you see is pretty much what you get, but this is not the case with a rangefinder. The system is very punishing of sloppy framing, but it’s amazing to be able to shoot with both eyes open and see what’s coming in and out of the frame.

Model Kelly Spronk

Tell us a little bit about these pictures, what you where doing with so many beautiful women?

This shoot actually came at the perfect time! The stylist for the shoot, Ana-Li Mraovitch, is a close friend of mine. She just moved back to NY from Paris and we’ve been talking about collaborating on a project for a while, so this was the perfect opportunity to do something fun. Ulla Reiss and Kelly Spronk, the two models for the shoot, are from the agency Silent Models NY. I’ve worked with Silent a lot in the past and have always had a great experience with their talent, so when we decided to put this shoot together I immediately reached out to them.

Give us a soundtrack to these pics! What songs do you think best describe your images?

Music is an important part of any photo shoot, as it helps to set the tone and get everyone excited and energetic. Here are a few of the tracks that we played while we were shooting:
Ivory by Owl Eyes
True Affection by The Blow
Drunk in Love by Beyoncé
Beatific by Candy Glass
Recover by Chvrches
Genesis by Grimes
Inspector Norse by Todd Terje

Producer Caitlin Biskup

How was your experience with the Russar+ Lens?

I had a fantastic time shooting with the Russar+ lens, but I was definitely intimidated at first. It’s always a challenge to shoot with a lens that you’ve never used before since you don’t know what how it is going to react to different scenarios and lighting. Combine that with the fact that it isn’t rangefinder coupled and that my camera doesn’t have 21mm framelines, and you have a potential recipe for disaster. That all said, there really is something magical about how it renders images and how incredibly wide the field of view is (yet with very little noticeable distortion!). I was very excited to see the results and wish that I had more time to better learn how the lens “sees.”

Models Ulla Reiss & Kelly Spronk

For you, what is so exiting about shooting wide angle pictures that you can’t do with a regular lens?

I usually shoot on a 40mm lens or longer, so shooting on such a wide angle lens was a new experience. What was super exciting for me was that a 21mm perspective forces you to think differently about how you convey the atmosphere of what you are trying to capture, since the lens “sees” so much more of the world around you.

Model Ulla Reiss

What is your favorite thing about shooting film?

What I love about shooting film is that the colors feel so much less clinical than digital, and that every film has its own unique characteristics. The best part, though, is the anticipation and surprise of getting a roll back from development. Sometimes it may take me a month or more to finish a single roll of film, and by that time I don’t always remember everything that I shot.

Any tips for Russar+ enthusiasts?

The legendary Robert Capa is famous for having once said, “If your photographs aren’t good enough, you’re not close enough.” Although Capa is referring more to the philosophy of being amidst the action rather than at arms-length from it, the sentiment applies here. When shooting on such a wide lens, its very tempting to take a step back to get more in the frame, but the most compelling shots will be the ones in which you instead took a step forward.

Models Ulla Reiss & Kelly Spronk

What is your next photo adventure?

Only time will tell, but I’d love a some point to go back to Iceland and do a shoot near the black basalt beach of Vík í Mýrdal. Hopefully the next adventure will be with Ana-li and Caitlin as they played an such an essential role in helping to put this last one together. Huge thanks to them, and of course to the lovely Ulla Reiss and Kelly Spronk of Silent Models NY!

Model Kelly Spronk

Check out more of G K Lee’s work on his website and follow his Lomohome!

written by ciaravesely on 2014-05-23 in #people #lomoamigos

More Interesting Articles

  • Vibrant Analogue Snaps Taken with the Leica M6 and the New Russar+ Lens

    written by chooolss on 2014-04-15 in #lifestyle
    Vibrant Analogue Snaps Taken with the Leica M6 and the New Russar+ Lens

    Here's a handful more of photographs taken with the New Russar+ Lens mounted on the popular Leica rangefinder, the M6, to satisfy your curiosity about Lomography's latest innovation!

  • Petzval Artist: Istanbul's Murat Kıvrak

    written by nural on 2014-09-01 in #people #lomoamigos
    Petzval Artist: Istanbul's Murat Kıvrak

    Istanbul-based fashion and celebrity Photographer Murat Kıvrak recently took the New Petzval Art Lens for a spin. Read our exclusive interview with Murat, who reinvented the corporate identity of a porcelain factory with the new Petzval Lens.

  • DrielyS shoots with the New Russar+ Lens at Coachella

    written by jillytanrad on 2014-05-02 in #people #lomoamigos
    DrielyS shoots with the New Russar+ Lens at Coachella

    Driely S is a young fashion, events and documentary photographer who based out of New York. She was given the opportunity to take photos at this year's Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, which also came as an opportunity for her to try out the New Russar+ Lens.

  • Shop News

    Give your space a facelift with your own analogue print

    Give your space a facelift with your own analogue print

    Really want to bring your film photos to life? We’re now offering totally analogue fine art prints in a host of large sizes and formats! Carefully enlarged from your negatives onto premium photographic paper by lab professionals, each picture is a unique piece of craftsmanship.

  • Turkish Petzval Artist: Ayman Şanlıtürk

    written by merveengin on 2014-10-24 in #people #lomoamigos
    Turkish Petzval Artist: Ayman Şanlıtürk

    Ayman Şanlıtürk took the New Petzval Art Lens for a spin and his portraits are currently on exhibit in Lomography Embassy Store Istanbul. Here are snippets from Lomogarphy Istanbul's interview with the talented photographer.

  • Sean Marc Lee Shoots with the Petzval Lens

    written by shanti929 on 2014-11-19 in #people #lomoamigos
    Sean Marc Lee Shoots with the Petzval Lens

    He expresses his photographic thoughts with brief words and manifests his photographic mind with simple images. For Sean Marc Lee, photography is a part life,and it happens naturally, like sleeping or breathing. This brings us to the question: how would he practice photography with the new Petzval Lens? Let's accompany him on his Petzval journey.

  • Far and Wide with the Russar+ Lens

    written by jillytanrad on 2014-10-09 in #lifestyle
    Far and Wide with the Russar+ Lens

    Paired with your camera of choice, the New Russar+ Lens can produce exceptional images wide-angle dreams are made of. Whether you're in the market for stunning landscapes or striking street photos, the Russar+ makes an ideal companion during those photographic expeditions. Dan from Lomography Hong Kong recently shot with the wide-angle wonder, and here are some of the photos from his shoot.

  • Shop News

    Show Off your Pics with Style!

    Show Off your Pics with Style!

    Build vivid hanging LomoCurtains, robust free-standing LomoCastles, and dazzling mounted LomoMosaics! Just click them together with the Lomography Photoclips!

  • Shooting Architecture and Cityscapes with the New Russar+ Lens

    written by plasticpopsicle on 2014-04-15 in #gear #tipster
    Shooting Architecture and Cityscapes with the New Russar+ Lens

    With a versatile lens like the New Russar+ lens, there are so many shooting styles, subjects, and approaches you can try with your L39 and M mount cameras. This wide angle lens is perfect for taking architectural shots and documenting cityscapes, so we thought of sharing a handful of quick tips you can try with this new accessory!

  • Using a 20mm lens to take pictures from the top

    written by sirio174 on 2014-05-11 in #gear #tipster
    Using a 20mm lens to take pictures from the top

    While waiting for the new Lomography gem, the wonderful Russar+ lens, I took some photos at a fun fair with my wonderful Mir 20/3.5 super wide angle lens from the big panoramic wheel. Here I'll tell you some tips about the use of this kind of lens. Read more after the jump!

    1
  • Petzval LomoAmigo Chris Pollard

    written by hannah_brown on 2014-12-08 in #people #lomoamigos
    Petzval LomoAmigo Chris Pollard

    Chris Pollard is a fashion photographer who, despite his exposure to the fast-paced world of runways and fashion, still has a passion for film photography. He expressed a keen interest in testing the New Petzval Lens, and we were more than glad to let him try it for himself. He shares photos ad answers a few questions in this exclusive feature.

  • Shop News

    Uncrate Long Lost Lomography Treasures - 30% Off in our Discount Section

    Uncrate Long Lost Lomography Treasures - 30% Off in our Discount Section

    Fly over to our 30% Discount Section to discover previously unavailable Editions & Clones! Be quick and make one yours before they are all gone again!

  • Daniel Zvereff: Artistic Explorer

    written by Jill Tan Radovan on 2015-02-09 in #people #lifestyle
    Daniel Zvereff: Artistic Explorer

    A freelance designer and illustrator by profession, New York-based Daniel Zvereff is an ardent traveler who documents his journeys the old-fashioned way – with hand-written journals and photographs. In this feature, Zvereff talks about his passion for travel, and how it has sparked a love affair with cameras and lenses.

    2
  • Pieces of Berlin Make Their Way to NYC

    written by efrost on 2014-09-29 in #people #events
    Pieces of Berlin Make Their Way to NYC

    Photographer Florian Reischauer is no stranger to the Lomography community. In 2013, our LomoAmigo took a Lubitel 166+ out for a spin and told us about his famous blog, "Pieces of Berlin". A few years earlier, he took time to take part in the 5 Questions on Analogue Photographyseries. Now, we’re here to give you the latest scoop on Florian Reischauer and his next appearance in NYC to present his new book which was based off of his blog, "Pieces of Berlin 2009-2013".

  • What to Shoot with the New Russar+ Lens

    written by jillytanrad on 2014-04-12 in #lifestyle
    What to Shoot with the New Russar+ Lens

    As the mother of all modern wide-angle lenses, the New Russar+ Lens shoots sharp wide-angle photos bursting with character. The solid yet compact ultra-wide 20mm lens can be used to photograph practically anything, and is compatible with a variety of film and digital cameras. Certainly this is a lens that delivers, but like anything, you can reap its full potential by choosing ideal subjects and shooting from a creative perspective.