Tag Archives: Ricoh

Love and Death of the Ricoh GRIIIx


When I was an admin at the now defunct Ricoh Forum, it was wished by all that Ricoh would make a GR with a 40mm FOV. See, 28mm and 40mm are a perfect pair. That was in the daze of the Ricoh GRD3 & GRD4. Time moved on and the forum was closed. Pavel was a great guy, dedicated to the group, etc. I guess the financial responsibility was too much to bear himself.

Along came the Ricoh GR. It was an experience that brought many to the Ricoh brand. Time passed again and the GRII was released. An amazing camera. It did things with 16mp that other makers couldn’t match. I took a nap and when I woke…(not WOKE, but woke) and then, there,  there it was, the one and only Ricoh GRIII. Now we have a camera that just about kills everything else.

The GRIII never fails to inspire and work with me. But wait my friends, oh yes… there is more than you can imagine or want to.  I was out on the street and Muddy the Ricoh GRIII told me he got an internal message from a Ricoh engineer. The message was about a new, real new Ricoh GRIIIx. This new-fangled camera sees at 40mm. That’s right. After 12 years, Ricoh made the 40mm GRIIIx.

Now, you’ll know me and I am not impulsive at all. When it comes to acquiring a new camera, I might just take a full minute to decide. I know, I know… usually 30 sec.  So I watched all around and then, then on the eBay listings, there it was. I mean the guy had a listing for a new Ricoh GRIIIx and it was ready to ship.  13 seconds later, he thanked me for the buy. He said it would ship in less than a day.  2 daze later, I had the camera. I immediately named the camera, Peter, after my old friend that passed years ago.

The camera is essentially set up the same as the GRIII. I went for a walk a bout the next day and well, it was nice but I was like…what have you done for me lately? Peter the Ricoh GRIIIx told me, look shooter, I am the new guy. I don’t appreciate you putting pressure on me to perform until we bond. I agreed and quietly apologized. The next day we go out again. I must say… the GRIII is one of my lifesaver cameras. I mean, when I am in a stalemate with life, I take the GRIII out and it saves me and revitalizes my vision.

That being said, I felt the GRIIIx can’t do that. Maybe, because my mind is trained to see 28mm and then Peter makes me see 40mm. Old habits are hard to break. I’m too old to want to do any of that. I waited maybe 12 years for this 40mm Ricoh and now that I have it, I don’t like it. It’s not the 40mm either. My M43 cameras love that Lumix 20mm 1.7.  The GRIIIx is a fine camera but not for me. I suppose I need to sell it off. I rather swap out and get something new.

awww, no worries, I have more tales of life and death of my cameras, soon


A Lesson I Really Learned From Minor White


Sometimes I wonder what on The Lords Green Earth am I thinking about. Maybe that’s a problem we all share.. yeah, damn right …you too. See, I kinda get on auto pilot and let my feelings and eyes do the work. Of course they are not independent of my whole, but I let them have guidance on the creative end. Also, nothing get’s the camera to work unless the mind is in it too. See, that’s the Eye, heart and mind I learned from Minor White.

From what I could take in, it was….don’t work looking for answers, but just be content with the questions your work presents to you. If you do this and don’t expect anything but more questions, you will live with your work as one and have peace thru it. If you force the issue of discovery and fight the battle for answers, you will live in turmoil and never be content with your work because you don’t know what it means to have peace.


Now I ain’t saying Minor was always right but I don’t think he was ever wrong. He further explained that there is contrast in everything we do. (later expressed as the inverse square law by me) He went on to explain that every single photo has the right to life. Every single photo is unique and it’s existence is justified by the fact that you created it. So, of course we all want and seek that special photo that we consider a Self Masterpiece. The point is, like children, not all are that special above the others. We strive for the special i,age but many are just a fragment of our life as it was when we made the photo.



I remember Seeing Paul Strand’s work countless time at the Museum. I think I mentioned this before, Ding showed me a box of Strand’s unseen works. Stuff he made but didn’t push or feel was worthy of exhibiting. Ding vowed to respect Strand’s request to never show the work to anyone. Luckily, I am no one so I saw the photos a few times. I realized back then that photography was not a labor of love as is taught. It is a way of life.




What echoed in my soul was that Paul made photos just like everyone and his well known masterpieces were what was always see. The fact that he made regular snaps, made me feel the connection to him stronger then I ever could have hoped for.

It’s like this, you go to a restaurant in Paris. Nice place, good wine excellent food. The you have to use the toilet, (I think that’s what it’s called, fee free to correct me)…you walk in and you see feet sticking out of a stall where someone is sitting doing his business.

You are taking a leak and you hear the familiar sound of gas escaping…(NE Philly it’s called a fart)… the stall door opens and out comes, in front of you a hero beyond all heroes the enigma that we call Henri’ Cartier Bresson.

You are in panic mode, I mean it’s true Bresson is a man, a man amongst shooters but a man. You think, wow, I can sit on the toilet like Bresson did…. your right.

Let me tell you something, all the world and all the planet recycles energy and love and hate. Don’t let anyone every tell you that you can’t do what Bresson did.

Do you see the hunger people have for heroes?  Vivian, Bresson, Strand, Winogrand. It’s up to you what you do with you work and your life. If in fact energy recycles over and over, maybe you are the next Hero. Maybe just maybe, you might know the next hero. Maybe just maybe you will buy a book by that hero or maybe name your camera after that hero…..

see you all tomorrow…….oh… if in fact some of youse become the next here, I want a discount on your stuff….

shooter out………end transmission……………………….


Ricoh GRII… Garden


Tanya is the dedicated homemaker both inside and out. She gives life to the garden and everything growing and also to me. I am no easy task for anyone but Tanya has that Russian upbringing and that seems to work. Between her and my Doc at the VA hospital, I have it well under control. Look, I don’t mind doing the dishes. I’m actually very good at it. When I’m tired of doing them, I’ll leave a small piece of food on a dish and that’s it…..I now have a few days off from that chore…..

“Go use your cameras, do something constructive. ” Okie…. so anyway, she bought some Orchards and we are seeing how we can keep them alive. I am seeing how many photo I can make of them as they change shape day by day. Flower and plants are children. We need to nurture them so that they nurture us in different ways. Our veggie garden will provide nice things that will be better than anything that could be bought in a store. The flowers nourish my heart and soul.


As far as making photos goes, I m kinda burnt out on the street. I feel that I need a new location to work but I know that’s not it at all. I just need to readjust my frame of mind so that my mind can see the frame in a way that excites me again. Until then I usually get depressed and complacent with everything again. The garden for me is a go to eye, heart and mind refresher. So I might be a little slow on posting for a little bit and then again, maybe not.

All I know is, I’m in the September of my years and I ain’t wasting any time being depressed or lazy.It’s gonna be the Ricoh GRII for a spell cause Ricoh has always been my go to camera for just being in the moment, wherever that may be.

Seeya’s in a few days… peace and be blessed all…..

Ricoh GRII


C’mon, why do people ditch the Ricoh GRII?  I haven’t a clue. I love all my cameras and even the ones I don’t have yet or the ones I had but don’t anymore. Camera discussion is over. If my photos don’t do what I intend, damn sure ain’t the camera’s fault.

….anyway, I kinda fell into a groove with things and am watching where it takes me. I mean there’s some kind of adjustment happening in my head without my shrink fiddling around up there…..ok, ok… true confession….I never really responded to color.I mean of course I can see it, Thank THE LORD but I never responded to it….

….many years ago a guy landed on earth, (No, not David Bowie)….and his name was Michael, for us Earthlings. now see, when I was younger, we all smoked some stuff that um… maybe back then wasn’t medical stuff….we would smoke some and talk and eat, and play instruments and eat and the get a shower, and eat and drive down the shore and eat…

well, this kat named Michael came from MARS, he had a word that summed up gaining and understanding knowledge…. that word was “GROK”.


So, if you read a camera manual and understood it, you GROK that. Even if you don’t smoke medical or non medical… it’ still GROK. Well, for some reason now, I GROK what I’m doing or want to do and I double GROK GROK color. (the double GROK is not a Martian term, it’s adapted from Martian to NE Philly, here on planet Earth.)

The thing is to stir your stuff up and shake it around and let it settle. Then look at the residue…(Paul McGuirk term) and see what’s left for you to work with. I guess one of the hardest things to do is to dislodge negative reinforcement, because many times it’s positive and not negative.

What I’m getting at it this….: if you post photos someplace and get nice responses in any form, then that’s positive reinforcement, or is it. Alright, keep an open mind for a spell. If you get positive reinforcement and you feel good about what your doing, you probably are in a safe zone and won’t do many things to change because… why fix something that’s not broken?


You have forged a safe zone that even you are apt not to tamper with. That creates an invisible zone of complacency. If you do that and trust me at my age, I’ve done that for decades….what will happen is you won’t grow.     You will stifle it Edith. 

You will think you are content and that you have found your place but for real, your on a dead end street.

I will continue this tomorrow but remember, before you can GROK anything you do, you have to GROK youself first.

Like the Ricoh GRII… GROK it and it’s a fine camera……

Hey, hey… I did this post with my brain on vacation dudes and dudesses


Streets of Philadelphia … A Visual Diary … Page 42 … Ricoh GRII … One ShoT pEr ShOOt

01-16-0197-EditThe winter has arrived in Philly. I don’t know about the rest of the country but here in Philly, it’s winter. How do I know. I had mom (Ricoh GRII) out and we were walking around. One of the last things Mom said to me before she died was….”I just don’t want to be cold”. I told her, …”You won’t be cold Mom, I promise”. Well, Mom, my Ricoh GRII is cold in my hand. Real cold. I was walking and thinking how much I hate the cold.

Tanya dresses me like Mom would do in the winter when I was a kid.  I had Long Johns on and a sweatshirt and a down coat that is made for Artic temperatures. It was like 22F outside and I was sweating like it was Summer. The Ricoh GRII named Mom was in my hand in the pocket. Ohhh, yes, yes, yes, lest I forget. I had the Rich GV-2 Finder mounted on top. It’s very small and i used it on my GR and also the GRD4. Best way to describe it is, Pocket Catcher Oner Thingy. Oh yeah, catches on the pocket everytime I pull it put.

That’s not a bad thing and it actually has firmware that Ricoh puts in the finder. See, The camera belongs in your hand and ready to work, not in the pocket. Ricoh knows this and installed an intuitive pocket catch procedure so that you learn not to pocket the camera when your supposed to be shooting.

It works, I pulled the camera out even knowing how much mom detested the cold and then I saw this photo waiting to be caught and….

….  Click!

Have a blessed day all youse….. shooter out……………………………………………………………………………….

Streets of Philadelphia … A Visual Diary … Page 35 … Ricoh GRII … One ShoT pEr ShOOt


Ruth and I, ummm hold on. I better explain. My GRII is named Ruth. I named her Ruth after my mother. She died a while ago and I wanted to name this camera after her. I didn’t name the GRII to give new life to Mom. I did it because Mom gave me life at birth and several times during our time together. I am hoping naming the GRII after her will give me life once again.

Well, I never called my mom by her name, Ruth. Maybe once or twice for a reaction but never because I felt it disrespectful.

So, being the fool that I am, I named the GRII Ruth and I should have called it Mom. So maybe this post is the official Ricoh GRII renaming procedure post. From now on I will call the camera, Mom.

So Mom and I, the Ricoh GRII formally known as Ruth went to the streets to look for a photo. I know, I know. The photos are looking for me too. Well, it’s been slim pickings in the shooter heart and mind. I  mean, there’s stuff out there, but I like to detach from others and myself mostly and find out there what’s in my head. Sometimes what’s out there isn’t in my head and I accept those photos graciously. Then there are those photos that seem to be a collaboration of what’s out there and what’s in my head.

So I am off on a tangent again. Well, that’s what I do. I am working with a few people here in Philly and we are now at the shoot but use just one photo part of the course. Having in your mind that you need just one photo that does it for you is a very difficult way to work. Imean it’s easy to burn many shots on an SD card. Then go to LightRoom and edit. It’s important to know how to edit in your processor, but it’s more important to know how to edit before release. So by doing the one shot per shoot method, it helps to focus me on what I’m working on. It will help you too.

There was a protest at City Hall about the Mayor and his Immigration Ideas. When I was younger I’d be all over the place shooting from the ground, the sky, laying down. flying by, on top of people and anything else I wanted to do. The paper loved it. So when I was walking and just feeling the vibe of the day, I came upon the scene. I listened carefully to the lady with the megaphone. She had a powerful but lovely voice. Smart. You kinda listened to her talking and the info got into your heart where she wanted it to be. Awesome. Well, I didn’t understand jack shit what she was saying cause she was speaking a language other than English. Oh, she was speaking American but not English.

Lucky for me I have a very clear understanding visually about communication. Isn’t that what shooters do, no? Well, I felt the vibe of solidarity and peace. The press shooters were all over singling out the most interesting faces for the spread in their paper whatever.

For me, it’s about the solidarity of the nothing. The nothing people that want to be heard and counted for. The people that become masses and even collateral. That’s why they are protesting. The want and deserve to be heard. Well, the words had less meaning for me then their presence. Not because I didn’t understand their version of the American Language but because I understand the universal version of the visual language.

I looked around and the I saw the shadows that hadn’t been there 30 seconds prior. If I shot the people and that would be the normal way to do this, then it would be about individuals instead of the reason they are there. So I was framing and it just wasn’t perfect. I could feel it going to either happen or quickly fall apart. hen for no reason at all except to make me happy in the here and now, then all the sudden….the to shadows in the center held hands and I knew that it was the shot. CLICK!

Have a blessed day my friends, seeya on my next outing. ……………………………………………………………………………………………….

Streets of Philadelphia … A Visual Diary … Page 34 … Ricoh GRII … One ShoT pEr ShOOt


So I am looking at my catalog in LR to see what’s in there from recent walks. Well, I do that cause I’m too lazy to go out and work. I convince myself that this is work too and it is but should not be used for an excuse not to be out shooting. It’s all part of the process and I enjoy all of it unless I feel lazy. So I decided to head to the Reading Terminal Market to get my lunch. I go to Sang Kee, a Chinese spot that’s about the best anywhere’s.  To get there, I went thru the tunnel and I have been in this a gazillion times. There’s a funky light in there and it’s not very interesting to photograph but yet, I am always making photos in there. I walked thru and passed this window frame as I did  many times. Then all the sudden, I saw a photo in my head.

I don’t know about youse all but it’s Monday and my brain is still on vacation from the weekend. So I can’t really trust anything in my head cause there’s nothing in there to process anything. Ok, so my brains on vacation, what the hell to do? I turned up the power to my heart and let my eye decide on the frame. So I’m looking at the frame and I see this guy walking towards me. He seemed like a normal guy and then I saw myself in the window frame and as he walked to the frame, I said, “hi”. He turned his head and……….CLICK!

It’s a good idea to get back into the one shot a shoot mission. That’s what I should be doing, but not doing and now will be doing…….

Have a blessed journey…… seeya’s shortly…………..

Streets of Philadelphia … A Visual Diary … Page 30 … Street … Namaste … Ricoh GRD4


Sometimes I am very lucky and I feel Mother Light blessing me. I mean it’s like I am not just connected with my vision but also my Mind and Heart. I have this warm feeling of being alive and of being aware that unto Mother Light, I have value that transcends my awareness of myself. It’s not about me being a photographer anymore but about me finding my humanity and having a camera in my hand. Why do I care about this stuff? Well, I suppose that I like to be in touch with my place in the universe and not to disturb anyone else’s. That’s not an easy task but I try anyway. I guess that if I feel some kind of cosmic connection, then maybe finding a connection down here on Earth might be easier to maintain.


Photography is about Intent. Photos are the realization of intent or the failure of the realization of intent. There are many ways that a camera can help or hinder the process. For example: The GRD4 for me is and always was a perfect union between photography, the camera and me. Other cameras are also but I’m talking about the GRD4 at the moment. When I have Penelope with me, there comes a peace of mind and heart. Other cameras also give me that or I wouldn’t have them. The thing is, the little lady Penelope fits in my pocket also. Hey, at my age, it’s nice to have a little lady in my pocket.

I think that after careful evaluation for many years, it appears that Penelope gives me peace that no other cameras ever did. Of course I love them all and they are wonderful friends but as far as the work goes. Penelope makes everything alright. I never care about what anyone says about about the photos. Well, that guy over there, I value his opinion and then there’s Tina, I must always respect Tina. I respect everyone actually but Penelope lets me respect myself enough that I don’t allow any judgement from others have a negative or positive impact.


With most cameras, I am aware that I am a shooter out making photos.

With Penelope the Ricoh GRD4, I am aware that I am a human being and glad to see what I see.

……………………………………………………………………see yas tomorrow……………………………………………………………………………………………

Streets of Philadelphia … A Visual Diary … Page 29 … Street … Breathe … Ricoh GRD 4


There’s something about Penelope that just takes me and gives me a sense of freedom that no other camera can do. I have been known to call the Ricoh GRD 4 a camera killer and it very well could be. Penelope is intoxicating. I have this feel of freedom and I just enjoy making photos and don’t really get too concerned about if they work for others or not. Of course, she can really nail it also but for right now I am enjoying just being with and spending time with her.


Look, I love my other cameras too but Penelope hasn’t been out in a while and she’s upset. She’s the only female camera I have and I do feel bad that I haven’t been paying attention to her.

The Fall is here in Philly and now the light gets interesting, people start to bundle up a little more, things are getting ready for the upcoming holiday’s. For me, it’s a good time  to work cause I love the change of seasons. I guess that’s why I am out withPenelope, the change is needed and welcomed.


I’m looking forward to the next few days to see what the GRD 4 brings me. I know one thing. When I bought her I had the choice of Black or White. I ordered Black and then it hit me, White will let me be more like a tourist so I changed the order to White. I love being a tourist and looking like a tourist. We are all tourist thru life, no one gets a permanent visa.




I feel glad to be alive. I feel glad to have a full stomach. I feel glad to have a few bucks in my wallet. I am even glad to have some bucks to spread around the homeless people. I love photography.

I love Penelope the Ricoh GRD 4 and the relationship we have together.


Well, gotta continue the journey and hopefully I will not forget an extra battery…..

I bow to youse all fine peoples and thank you for being here and reading this stuff…..

enough mushy shit…. go make photos, see ya’s tomorrow

Homework … Penelope the Ricoh GRD 4 likes it … More Thoughts From Philly

03-15-171-EditSometimes I get kinda art schooley and I make photos that remind me how much I still have to learn. Problem is I enrolled in the  school of life a long time ago and never graduated. I was afraid of graduation cause then if I was a graduate I would be making photos of my cat and plants. I’s have too much education to do things like that. It would be beneath a life graduate to make silly simple photos. You’d need to get a pardon from the international life committee of graduated and non graduated students and that wouldn’t be easy. So of course the easiest way to do this is to make the photos and never post them anywheres. They just become records of our innocence lost. We need not worry about our peers seeing our silly photos that may mean a lot to us but we stay in the closet and not let them be borne. It’s prolly easier to come out of the closet and say your Gay or Les or Bi or Trans than saying, hey, I’m a serious photographer, Look at my cat photos.

03-15-176-EditI know none of youse ever suffer thru this situation. I know it’s my personal bullshit that makes me feel stupid silly things but nonetheless, I do feel it. Does that make sense? No matter, my Doc thinks I’m not all crazy, he swears I’m half sane and that’s a good point to hold on to. I got Penelope off the shelf and as soon as I turn her on, she turns me on. Now I think I’ll dig on the shelf again and pull someone off that hasn’t seen the light of day in a while. Tomorrow I’m on the streets again and will bell rest of week. I need to get way from the cat and the plants. They making me crazy.


So the Canon EOS M2 has found a new home thanks to ebay. Nice camera, great IQ but it has a Touch screen I cant turn off… by,enjoy your new home. I have Andre’ the Fuji X100s and  Walker the Nikon Coolpix A to do the work. I have Rogers Leica M’s and some other things around if I need another camera. I don’t. My Olympus Pen EP-5 came home 15 months ago after being repaired and I never opened the box. I guess it’s fixed. Dunno, wanna just go with the flow the 2 guys can feed me.


So I am ready to go out and work in a steady manner. I prolly won’t stop my Homework or Plant Life stuff cause I love and don’t have to stop.That stuff satisfies on a different level but it is very satisfying and I will keep looking for photos.

Isn’t that what real photographers do, they can make good photos of anything with any camera. I envy them there ppls cause I’m not that.I always wanted to be a good all arounf photographer.I worked that life pursuing that dream and fell short always.

I guess I just have to be a Human Being with a camera, sheeeeesh… go figure