Daily Inspiration #368 by Vincent van Kleef

From Steve: Wow, look at this B&W quality from the old tried and true and quirky M8. The M8 always ha da great B&W quality about it and if you think about it, you could find a used M8 and use it as a Monochrom camera if you never want to shoot in low/dim light. The only thing holding it back is ISO and lack of full frame but the results from the M8 are always….classic. Thanks Vincent!

Hi Steve,

It’s been 13 years since I’ve welcomed our daughter to this world. Ever since that moment I am in a constant awe. Maybe that sounds a bit exaggerated to you or the many readers of your awesome site, but I can assure you that it’s a genuine statement. As your life is in a constant flux everything is impermanent, so is your parenthood. It’ being confronted with a new-born that you realize how fast it’s changing. A dear friend of mine gave birth to a beautiful baby boy recently and she not only gave me the opportunity to take photographs of their 5 days old child, but also asked me to use them for their birth announcement card. Obviously, that has been quite an honor to do. As I was taking pictures of their child, I had a flashback to the time that our daughter was a baby. Words cannot describe how your life changes when you become a parent. It’s not about being more happy or having a more fulfilling life. It’s just different…..and just….awesome.

The pictures are shot with my ‘old’ but trusty Leica M8 with the Voigtlander 75mm 1,8. Processed from RAW in Capture One and used with the Rollei Retro preset in DxO Filmpack 3. Hope you like it and good and inspiring enough to publish it on your site!


Vincent van Kleef



  1. Tender…
    Another + for M8.
    It was (is, perhaps) misstreated even by the makers.Cleaning sensor was like traveling to outer space; no help about that; normal coming from film, who doesn’t.

  2. hi Vincent,

    Great pics man! Well done, even better with the long focal length as it can be quite hard to get it focussed right.
    I sold my M8 a few months ago to get a M9P which I use together with my M9 for wedding work (there’s been a post here about that), because the colors of the M8 were too different from the M9 to use them together. I do not regret buying the M9P – even after the ME was announced…OK, maybe a little 😉 – but I DO regret selling the M8, just because it is such a GREAT camera. And I miss the 1/8000th.


    • Hee hallo Joeri! Well, thank you :-). Yes, I’ve seen your photo’s as well, loved them! Also got inspired by your story about switching to photography as a day job. It’s kinda funny to see the M8 get that appraisal after all of the criticism it has received after its introduction. Having said that, sites like Flickr are full of the most beautiful pictures made with iPhones and just ‘mediocre’ camera’s. The M8 is just a beautiful made and gorgeous looking camera and there for inspires me to take photo’s like these. You’re one lucky guy, owning both a M9 and M9P…..!

      Dankjewel en veel succes met je werk!


    • Hi Andy,

      Thanks! I rarely use my DSLR anymore, only for its focal length. It’s an oldie, so maybe I purchase an new one in the future. I’ve just bought a Minolta X-700, my very first camera. Just for the love for photography :-).

  3. Hi Vincent,
    Very nice pics! From some months i am also a M8 very happy owner.
    I’d like to know what lense did you use.

    • Hi Luca,

      I’m glad you like the pictures! These particular shot have been taken with the Voigtlander 75mm 1,8. A really nice lens and very suitable for sots like these. I also own the 21mm Voigtlander, but the lens I use the most is the Leica 28mm 2,0 Asph which in my opinion is the perfect combination with the M8 due to its crop sensor.

  4. Great photos from a great camera! The M8 and M6 are my constant companions. I’ve thought of selling both and upgrading to ME or M9 but the M8 is such a great camera I think I will just stick with it. I see no reason to change. Thanks! Tom

    • I have my weak moments of wishing for a M9 Tom and hope to own one day…but till that moment I really enjoy using the M8! Thanks for your kind words.

  5. Stunning images! The m8 seems to be truly wonderful b&w -camera, but not all credit to it, you also took great shots with it!

    • Thank you very much Peter. As you know I am a big admirer of your work, so your compliments mean A LOT to me!

  6. I see photographs like these and every time I regret selling the M8 twice.

    I know it had it’s faults, it’s sill foibles, stupid & expensive UV-IR filters on each lens, is a chubby swine compared to an M2, sometimes froze up on me. My first one kept getting oil from the shutter on the sensor I could never quite fully remove by cleaning. Focus issues on so many lenses etc, etc, etc. But persevere with it and under the right conditions it can produce a lot of magic from such a flawed camera as you have shown here so well Vincent.

    Always thought the M8 produced slightly better BW conversions over the M9 myself. Maybe over the MM too at lower ISO’s I hazard?

    • Sad to hear you had problems with oil leaking on the sensor and focus issues. I experience the freezing up as well but just a few times. In regard of being better than a MM; I think it’s mainly up to the look you prefer. I think the MM has superior sharpness and resolution but the files of the M8 have a lot of soul, maybe because of its imperfections?

  7. Is it me or these photos look much better compared to the MM’s outpot from the previous post? The dynamic range seems much wider with more pop too.. Just an opinion.

    Great work by the way!

  8. Great results! I really have to pull my M out of the photography cupboard again. Always a pleasure to feel, look and hear it. Don’t forget the inspiring view through the viewfinder. Thanks Vincent and Steve for this little inspiration!

    • Thank you Martin! I have been a long time (D)SLR user and shooting with a DSLR still appeals to me but it’s the handling of the M and the moment of actually taking the shot which makes it’s so special and rewarding. Having said that, the quality of the pictures still blow me away at times.

  9. Great to see the M8 is still being appreciated. I’ve been seeing an immense jump in popularity with Black and White Conversions since the M Monochrom was released, and I’m happy to see such great results from the highly capable M8. Cheers

    • It’s just like Steve says; it’s old, true and quirky :-). The M8’s got soul and I like it a lot for that. Thanks for the complements Kristian!

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