Vilnius Lithuania – My walk through this photogenic town

Vilnius Lithuania – My walk through this photogenic town

By Steve Huff

So here I am today..another day of serious photo opportnities! I am in Vilnius Lithuania for the next stop on the Seal European summer tour and yesterday I walked around quite a bit snapping shots of this lovely charming town. Had my Fuji X100 (new firmware rumored to be coming within the week) and Leica M9 with me and both gave me wonderful results, can’t complain about either of these lovely cameras.

I started the day early morning as the weather was brisk, cool, and sunny. In other words, PERFECT! Back home in Phoenix it is 110 and sunny so I am really enjoying this weather while I can get it! As I looked out of my hotel window I thought “Perfect Photo Weather”!

BTW, I am also staying at a beautiful hotel here in town and had to snap a couple as I left my room. Love the old world charm of this place.

Next three shots, M9 and 35 Summicron ASPH – THE 35 Cron Character shines through here…

As I made my way down the stairs and outside of the hotel I started snapping the little X100 quite a bit as I started to become addicted to its ease of use and lovely EVF. Also, after shooting it so much, I have really learned its strengths and its weaknesses. As I have always stated,  It is in NO WAY like shooting an M9 but  it’s also a joy to use, and the output is astoundingly great at times.

CLICK for larger version – X100 at its sweet spot, f/4

Even f/2 works well on the X100 and can be a sweet spot at the right distance. With a 35, you do have to get up close to your subjects! I thought the dog was gonna eat my X100…

X100 – f/2

X100 – f/4

X100 – f/4

Bring on the M!

I then started to shoot with the M9 to see how the difference in usability and feel would be. Ahhhh, when the M hit my hands I remembered why I love rangefinder shooting so much. Not to knock the Fuji as it is THE camera right now but  the M and me just seem to “jive”.

Click image for 1200 pixel wide version – M9 and 35 at f/2 – colors…WOW!

and I did take the same shot with the Fuji though at 2.8 –

After a while I started to get hungry AND thirsty so I found a street cafe, picked a good seat to people watch and then ordered a beer. Was amazingly nice to just sit there and say to myself , “Wow..I am in Lithuania!”

So there I was, just me and my M9/35 Cron when a guy walks by and does a double take, looking at me. He asked if I was Steve Huff, and after a quick introduction it turned out he is a fan and reader of this web site! HOW COOL IS THAT!

He sat down and chatted for about an hour, had a beer and I enjoyed a pretty tasty pizza. Terry, it was great to meet you and THANK YOU for your company! I always enjoy meeting the readers of the web site and photo fans in general (and I can not wait for the Seattle meet up in July!!)

Terry mentioned that he recently picked up an M8 and 35 Cron, and from what it sounded like, he is enjoying it quite a bit.

Terry at lunch – M9/35 cron


Rain Rain go Away, but bring good light!

While at lunch it started pouring rain horribly so I tried to wait it out a bit but it just kept coming down. I hung around the cafe and tried to find a photo but with everyone scurrying away from the rain, there really was nothing to shoot. I ran back to the hotel as my M9 got soaked, but it survived as did I 🙂 Who needs weather sealing? Haha.

After an hour or two back in the room I heard from Seal via text and we ended up taking a photo stroll through the town, after the rain stopped. I attached the trusty Nocti to my M9 and I have to say…the Noctilux seems to just always provide crazy magic and YES INDEED it can be used as an everyday lens, as that is how I have been using it. This new version is absolutely stunning at any aperture.

Wide open – Seal enjoying some magic light time with his M9 and 90 Summarit, which he is loving.

Lots of dogs in Vilnius – this little yorky was having a good old time while the dude was giving me a thumbs up

Fashion in Vilnius – lots of cool people. This one was shot from the hip wide open at 0.95! Man I am SKILLED! Lucky!

As we walked we met Sylvia and Laura who were hanging outside of a restaurant chatting.

and as we walked further we started getting approached every 20 feet or so. These sisters were very sweet girls.

EVERYONE we met was lovely and happy, which was so cool. Seal signed some autographs and took pictures with fans as we continued our walk..

After a 3 1/2 hour walk and some dinner we headed back to the hotel. That is when I realized I had been shooting the whole day. It flew by though because taking photos is what I love to do most and I feel amazingly blessed to be here and to be able to fulfill my passion every single day. Sharing that same passion with great friends is even better!

Thanks for reading and hope you enjoyed the photos from my day in Vilnius Lithuania!

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  1. hello Steven from two sisters 😉 i loved the pictures of me my sister and Seal!!! Thank you one more time, it was really nice meeting you, hope it was not the last time;)[img]file:///C:/Users/karolina.bukelyte/Desktop/IMG_0558.JPG[/img][img]file:///C:/Users/karolina.bukelyte/Desktop/IMG_0560.JPG[/img]

  2. We made some advertising for you today in our VilNews e-magazine – the World’s largest and most comprehensive English language publication from and about Lithuania. It’s all on

  3. Lovely photos as always!

    You know Steve, I am going to have to stop coming to your website as it is causing so much GAS and desire for more gear/lenses 🙂 I have an M8.2 and I can’t afford/justify an M9 yet, so I just picked up a used M6 and want to try film…and that is because of your damned MP and M2/M3 articles – but with that I now want a 35 Summilux. And one day I will buy a Noctilux as the look of the photos from a Nocti is beyond amazing.

    Your website should be banned! 🙂 LOL.



  4. Wow. Love the lighting in this town. Beautiful photos, Steve. It’s funny how you met a fan on the street. How cool is that? It sounds like you had a wonderful day of photography and meeting people.

    • How can anyone miss a great guy like Steve on a walkabout…….and a M9 around his neck…no must admit it was so cool meeting him,,,,,,great guy and a great website..

  5. Wow, what an experience, to go on a 3.5 hour walk with a good friend, in a far away place, with great light, and great people, using the best gear…hard to beat that! One of these days, we need to do something similar…oh wait, that’s coming in later July, LOL!

    Seriously lovely captures, Steve. I am so thrilled that despite the work of shooting the tour, you continue to have the passion to go out and shoot for fun. Say hi to your bud ~6 for me. Wish I were there with you guys, seeing the same things…but Seattle ain’t that shabby either 😉

    Here are a couple from tonight’s sunset photo stroll…



  6. Steve, you rock man , ,

    Everyday @ morning i open my Google Reader to read your feeds, everyday i hope i read one of your awesome reports . .

    I love travelling, I was in Italy from Feb 2010 till Nov 2010, i stayed 10 months working there and every weekend i visited some place new. Italy, Slovenia, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Austria, Switzerland, France, Germany, and Spain . . remarkable year for me . .

    I used my deceased Nikon D70 (Stolen) with several lenses, and came up with loads of digital moments . .

    Now i am a Leica man . . with Chrome M9 and Summilux 50 Chrome . . i am so happy with this combo . . cannot feel lighter, so satisfied . .

    When i opened this report this morning, i was reading with a big smile , , cause this reports my most 2 passions, travelling, and photography . . with the European essence, this report is remarkable.

    Thank you.


  7. Great set, especially 2, 3, 4 photo. The town’s people are very photogenic too. 🙂

  8. I love the photos! Thanks so much for sharing them. I love how everything looks laid back, and how you guys can just walk around and take photos, even if Seal is with you. Thanks again.

  9. Love the shots with Seal and the three sisters, the second of which is perfect

    well done

  10. Hi Steve,

    Really like ‘Fashion in Vilnius’ -can’t put my finger on exactly why, but I just do.

    By the way, would you mind putting a comma between the city and country names in your articles (e.g. Vilnius, Lithuania). As I’ve never heard of these places before, I find it surprisingly confusing, as I often read it as a city with two words in the name (like Novi Grad or New York), before realising my mistake.

    Probably just me though!

  11. One tip – until Saturday, Lithuania is having the longest days in all Year (Over 17 hours long) and almost no night time – only dusk and dawn.
    + Great opportunity for some sunrise photos in the city

  12. damned, I can’t believe it! we managed to make photos on the same day!
    7th photo from above, I tried to take a picture of that girl 3 times already (I’ve seen her 3 times that day!) but she managed to hide her face 😀 same coat, same face… I sit mostly at cathedral square (With nikon d70 and m42 PORST 200mm) and pilies st. – great spot for capturing people.

  13. Hi, Steve, nice post.

    You have made a mistake in first photo;) ‘Vilnius’ not ‘Vilnus’;)

    Regards, Girmantas from Vilnius

  14. Steve, do you use an ND-filter when you’re shooting the Nocti wide open during the day? Or were the photos taken at night when the light is a bit dimmer? I have trouble shooting my 50 Lux wide open during the day, so I figure it would be downright impossible to do it with the Nocti 🙂

  15. Nice to see great photos from my hometown. As it’s the first time I see your photos, it’s very interesting. I enjoyed it. Hope you liked Vilnius and you”ll make more photos in Lithuania. Best wishes from Vilnius.

  16. These kind of scenarios seem to be where the X100 thrives. It’s great to see you still putting it up against the M9 though.

    I recently spent four days shooting with the X100 in Budapest, Hungary (I believe you’re headed there soon). A very similar looking place. The camera never missed a beat and I returned with a whole load of new print material.

    As you must have learnt already amongst your group Steve, comfortable shoes are a must, once you start wandering the streets of these European cities the hours and miles pass rather rapidly.

    Thanks for the photographs and enjoy the rest of Europe.

  17. luck is a man-made concept! your photo turned out great because you were MEANT to capture it! keep on, keepin’ on.

  18. Hey Steve,

    Love the ‘from the hip’ shot and the one with Seal giving an autograph and the girl peeking through! Last time I was in Vilnius (back in 1980s) is was kind of grey and uneventful (as any other Soviet town). Now it looks gorgeous!


  19. The Noctilux really has a unique character that you can spot right away if you know what to look for. Pure magic! (That’s also why it’s made in the secret Leica facility somewhere deep below the sea, probably Atlantis …)

  20. Steve, if you want to take some great pictures go to the Trakai castle, 35km outside of Vilnius. I found you on Google, are you Seal’s official photographer? Cheers!

  21. Hi Steve!

    Really entertaining reading your blog – we can “feel” how you enjoy your visit to Europe.
    If I do remember correct, there should be a Seal-concert in Austria too…

    Wish you a pleasant time!

  22. Steve, it was great pleasure to have a beer with you my mate, good luck with the show tonight…….

  23. lovely photos, Steve! and what a nice little town filled with beautiful smiles 🙂
    How do you convert your photos to black and white (such as the one with two young ladies walking)? They always have a nice tone to it. I can never get my b/w shots that way. I would greatly appreciate your tip on this!

  24. Great, great photos, Steve. I equally love the stories behind those photos. What a beautiful country Lithuania is.

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