Daily Inspiration #327 by Uri Shwartz

From Steve: This is a cool Daily Inspiration for many reasons. The Message Uri gives, the images themselves and the fact that he captured these with the classic M8, which gives a totally different look and feel over the M9. GREAT stuff Uri, and thanks for sending it in!

My name is Uri Shwartz I am a documentary DOP working in broadcast in NY. I photograph the streets around my house in Bedford Stuyvesant Brooklyn. I like street photography because its the opposite of what I do all day on the job. As a DP I am after something specific there is a storyboard goals etc. Street photography only works if you stop searching and start seeing. Anyway I shot these three on my way from the subway home.

 Leica m8 zeiss 35mm c 2.8 biogon


  1. As someone said, the first one is better than at least 9 of the top 10 from the contest. And far above the winner, imo.
    However, what strikes me most is when I think of how to make such a photo with an EVF, regarding the latest hype around such cameras. Simply, it is impossible. How can someone consider a camera that hinders you in getting the exact right moment? I thought about this when using a Fuji Quicksnap disposable camera recently, because it is superior than all those viewfinder-less cameras (including evfs)in that it gives you a direct connection to the subject and zero shutterlag. The only digital cameras that do this are m8, m9, mm, rd1 and to some extent the fuji x’s (weren’t it for fuzzy af). How sad is this…

  2. Hmm, Steve…you can’t tell weather these were caught with an M8, E1 or Canon 30D…after everything goes through the Photoshop blender, all sensor/lens values go out the window..it’s just everyday Photoshop post processing that is a little over done for my tastes.

    His eye is good and the pictures are good from the point of decisive moment and comp, I think. It’s just too bad these moments are ultimately are deemed necessay of PP…just let it run with maybe a slight 3 point S curve to make up for the filters in front of the sensor.

    The only “feel” in Photography is that done with specific film emulsions and or specific lenses…SLR or RF bodies coming in 3rd, imho.

  3. Fantastic shots! These are wonderful. I look forward to seeing more of your work. All three are great pictures, but the timing in the first one…this is the decisive moment!

  4. Great story telling images, Uri! Love the sense of place each provokes and love the contrast in your imagery. Gives me something to aspire to – thanks for sharing!!!

  5. Thanks for the great response. I am kind of shy about showing my photography (although my moving images are watched around the world) so its good to hear.

    I use silver fxpro 2 for black and white conversion in Aperture and usually go for the Kodak Tmax settings and add structure.

    I am putting together galleries at:


  6. Love them. Let me guess. I do photos with the same tonescale. Digital color processed in DxO, adding their filmsoftware, selecting Black and White, then Tri-X with a filter, Yellow, Y strong, Orange or Red depending on the light. Thats how. At least thats my workflow for this tonescale.

  7. Timing of the first one is great. It’s so surreal it almost looks as if the person was superimposed at a different scale to the rest of the image.

  8. Just a thought from a non-street shooter (no streets around here!); do most “street” shots need to be very high contrast?

    High contrast has advantages for emphasising patterns, shapes, and spatial arrangement, but I don’t see the advantage of reducing people/faces to harsh black or white. There might be exceptions of course, where faces become part of a pattern, but I wonder if many shots would improve with a silkier range of tones, as in image 3.

    Might be it’s a hangover from the days of the necessary “pushing” of film speed ( Rodinal etc dilutions and development times), but suffering contrast increase was a result – now it seems an uneccessary de rigeur/ me too convention to copy.
    Paul Strand’s “Blind Woman” is more what I had in mind.

    That said, Uri caught some great moments.

  9. really good pics Uri. love the B&W look. just wondering. the black border around pictures 1 and 3. how did you do that. i do it when i’m doing my enlargements in te darkroom but since shooting digital i’m still missing a couple of things to get the look i want, specially for B&W.

    thanks and keep shooting

  10. There is so much really average “street” photography out there but these – especially the first 2 – are real street pictures IMHO. Great stuff.

  11. Great pictures, Uri. The second one really benefits from the extra sharpness and contrast, it makes the whole scene sparkle.

  12. Pretty great shots. First one is my favorite. In my opinion it’s better than a number of the photos in the B+W contest.

  13. Hi Uri,

    Stunning shots, really ! The high contrast is perfect for me; I like when we can not see everything…

    Thank you for sharing and keep on !



  14. Hi Uri,

    Great images man! Thanks for sharing.

    Wondering what your work flow is and if you applied post-sharpening to the images you posted here? The center one in particular is HYPER sharp to the point of almost hurting my eyes viewing it on my Apple monitor… Incredible contrast as well…

    Anyway, I’m also based in Brooklyn (downtown area) and enjoy street shooting as well.
    Perhaps we can meet-up for a coffee one day and swap lies and battle stories..

    Hope to run into you sooner than later-

    • I must say that pretty eager to know the workflow for the middle one. The water almost feel freezed by a flash. How did you do it?

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