The Leica M4-P is widely regarded as one of the last classic Leica M models and is a truly excellent tool for a photographer that is as much an artist as a craftsman. The timeless design, the handling, the soft, smooth sound of the shutter, I’ve spoken with many M photographers that say this is their preferred M throughout the complete history of the line. Similarly, the Leica 50mm ƒ2 Summicron lens is considered to be one of the best 50mm lenses ever made. And with good reason, it’s sharp, contrasty, and renders beautifully. Working with World of Photography in Grandview Ohio, we put together what we consider to be the classic film M4-P kit. A Leica M4-P, 50mm ƒ2 Summicron lens, Domke bag, and a selection of some of our preferred films, including selections from Ilford and Kodaks newly revived Ektachrome.

50 submissions.

14 finalists.

One walks away with the grand prize.

To all who submitted your images and essays, we want to take this moment to thank you all. After narrowing it down through a series of blinds selections, Andrew and I came to the same final selections. Both in our choice for first and second place winners, we selected our choices privately, then shared our choices and discussed our reasons for the selections we made. In the end, none of the finalists made it an easy choice for us. And again, we want to thank you all for your entries.

As a reminder 2nd place will be receiving a Leica instant camera, while the grand prize winner will win the Leica M kit and further publication here at Field Photographer.

Without further delay, our unanimous selections are as follows.

2nd Place Selection: Oswaldo Guadarrama for his essay ” 27 de Septiembre: Mexican War of Independence Re-enactment in Tonatico, Mexico” (LINK)

1st Place: Matt White for “These Fading Places” (LINK)

Congratulations to Both Matt White and Oswaldo Guadarrama! You both submitted essays that impressed all of us here at FP and were early picks for final selections.

We’ll also be reaching out to speed with you directly about your work Matt, congratulations again and we look forward to seeing your work with you new Leica M kit! FP

Winner will be contacted or further info

“I chose Matt White’s essay as our clear winner, not simply for the excellence of its photography but, more importantly, for the sum of its parts.  Each element of These Fading Places was, in its own right, very well done, but it was the combination and harmony of these parts that made Mr. White’s essay stand out.  Shooting, editing, and presenting a photo essay along with accompanying text was no easy assignment and everyone who entered deserves praise.  Assembling a photo-essay is about more than good photographs, and the sum of the parts Mr. White submitted best exemplified the photo-essay in its classic form.

First of all, Mr. White’s photos are very good.  They show an eye for detail, composition, timing, and lighting as well as Mr. White’s obvious technical mastery of his camera.  Beyond these, however, Matt White exhibits the intangible elements of intimacy, involvement, his willingness to invest time and to expose himself at the same time he exposes a frame.

As I wrote in, Shoot a Photo Essay, it is possible to make a modest essay in a day or two.  However, no matter how good a series of photos, no matter how compelling a subject even, it is impossible to achieve the layers, nuance, and depth present in a series of images taken over an extended time-period.  It is this sense of time that is evident throughoutThese Fading Places, that makes Mr. White’s work stand out.  Indeed, time and its passage are central to the theme of the essay, and the time spent making it lends perspective and pathos.

Finally, Mr. White is a good writer and his words are an excellent accompaniment to his images in style, tone, subject, and theme.  Like his images, his writing is polished, poetic but clear, poignant without being oversentimental or mawkish.

There were a number of excellent submissions and I am not being pro forma when I say I applaud everyone who took the time and the courage to put their work together and put it out for review and public scrutiny.  This was a learning experience for myself as well, to see the different work and all the diverse and varied approaches to the assignment, both emotional and technical.  This, I believe, is at the core of what makes the photo essay such an important art form: it broadens our perspective as to the world and to the different ways of perceiving and reporting it. 

I would like very much to congratulate Matt White for These Fading Places and wish him great future success, but to do so, as well, for everyone who entered this contest and, indeed, for all those who feel called to go out, camera and pen in hand, with the hope of exploring and explaining the world.” – Andrew Tonn

NOTE: If you were notified about being a finalist and don’t see your post published yet, it’s because we had a posting error that for some reason interfered with our scheduled posts. We’re fixing it and your entry will still be published. If you no longer wish us to publish your entry, please use the contact form and let us know ASAP, we’re sorry about the delay. – Jef

Author: JefPrice

Former this & that. Exploring & Photographing since I was 11. Founder of FieldPhotographer.org


  1. Congratulations to the winners! I have enjoyed reading your essays and the photos are impressive!

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