The Panavision PSR 35mm movie camera that was used for most of the principal photography in the original 1977 ‘Star Wars’ movie has been sold at auction for $625,000 — the highest price ever paid for a movie camera. While the price is record-setting for both Star Wars memorabilia and film movie cameras, it still pales in comparison to prices seen in the world of still photography — the most expensive camera was auctioned earlier this year for $1.9 million.
(via The Guardian)
Despite what you might think, this isn’t some random snapshot we found online — it’s actually the world’s most expensive photograph. Titled “Rhein II”, it’s a 1999 photograph by Andreas Gursky showing the Rhine river. Last night it sold for a whopping $4,338,500 at Christie’s.
Gursky has become quite the Midas of photographers: this is his second photo to claim the title of “world’s most expensive”, with the first being 99 Cent II Diptychon ($3.89M and now the 4th most expensive).
(via Christie’s via NSoP)
Now here’s a camera accessory you don’t see every day: over in Japan there’s an artisan named Takuya Okamoto who handcrafts unique camera straps out of crocodile hide. The straps cost a whopping $1400 apiece.
Crocodile Hide Camera Straps (via Map Camera via tokyo camera style)
Filmmaker Philip Bloom recently helped Lucasfilm shoot parts of their upcoming film Red Tails. The behind-the-scenes video above gives an interesting glimpse into what it looks like when pretty ordinary DSLR gear meets the big budget world of Hollywood filmmaking. The cameras are hooked up to some pretty serious equipment.
You can check out a trailer for the movie here — Blooms says that a number of his shots can be seen in it, but is keeping mum about which ones.
Leica offers a funky $200 lens holder accessory for its M system film rangefinders that screws into the tripod mount and lets you store an extra lens on the bottom of the camera. Here’s the description found on the site:
[…] the second lens also serves as a handle when it’s inserted into its bayonet mount, helping to provide additional stability when shooting handheld at long exposure times. The setup could even be used as a miniature tripod.
Makes sense. As we all know, the first thing a Leica shooter thinks when they drop big bucks on a new lens is, “Hmm. I’ll bet this lens would also work well as a mini-tripod!”.
Leica Lens Holder M (via Gizmodo)
You know you’re ballin’ as a photographer when you can use your lens collection to play a giant game of chess.
The complete 32 piece set includes 70-200 f/2.8 pawns, 600mm f/4 Kings and 500mm f4 Queens, 400mm f/2.8 Bishops, 300mm f/2.8 Knights, and 200mm f/2.0 Rooks in black (Nikon) and white (Canon). [#]
If you don’t have a complete set of lenses to make your own set, you can rent a set for a week from LensRentals for $9,221 (not including shipping, which will cost you between $1,100 and $2,400).
There’s a new entry in the list of most expensive photographs, and this time it’s not a fine art photo. Over the weekend, the only existing photograph of legendary outlaw Billy the Kid sold at auction for a whopping $2.3 million to billionaire Bill Koch, becoming the 4th most expensive photo in the world.
One of the few artifacts remaining from Billy’s life is a 2×3 inch ferrotype taken by an unknown photographer sometime in late 1879 or early 1880. It is the only picture of Billy that is universally agreed upon as an authentic photo of Billy. The ferrotype survived because after Billy’s death, Dan Dedrick, one of Billy’s rustler friends, held onto the picture and passed it down in his family. [#]
The tintype photo was previously estimated to be worth between $300K and $400K.
Billy the Kid: Ferrotype (via CNN)
Kate Spade’s Pocomo Gwem handbag features a pretty well known rangefinder camera. Recognize it? It’s the Leica M9 with a gold plated spade in the “red dot” instead of the standard Leica logo. Too bad the $225 bag isn’t meant to actually hold one.
Pocomo Gwem by Kate Spade New York (via KEH Camera Blog)
A Leica 0-series camera made in 1923 was sold this past weekend at WestLicht Photographica Auctions for a staggering €1.32 million (~$1.89 million). Only about 25 0-series cameras were manufactured to test the market before Leica began commercially producing the Leica A. It’s the most expensive camera ever sold, but is still only half the price of the most expensive photo that was auctioned earlier this month.
Sigma generated a lot of buzz recently after announcing its SD1 DSLR with a $9,700 MSRP, and that’s probably exactly what they were trying to do. As articles all over the Internet questioned why a 14.7MP Sigma DSLR would cost the same price as Pentax’s 40MP medium-format DSLR, Sigma was quick to point out that the camera would actually be selling for a slightly more reasonable street price of $6,900.