An Affinity for Black Paint:… | Leica Store - San Francisco

An Affinity for Black Paint: Introducing the Leica M10-R Black Paint

Leica Black paint cameras have made their way into the eyes of collectors and Leica enthusiast all over the globe as a quintessential "Holy Grail" of sorts when it comes to collectible Leica M. Why is this? The Leica M really developed its popularity in the black paint finish in the 1950s with the production of a camera heavily influenced by the M3, the "Original Leica MP." Not to be confused with the modern MP which includes rapid loading and a meter, the original Leica MP camera came in both silver chrome and black paint finishes and went on later to bring exuberant amounts at auctions within the past several years.

A Leica M2 in Black Paint combined with an extraordinary 50mm Summicron-M Black Paint with brass mount. Read More Here

In addition to the provenance given to the "Original Leica MP." The black paint finish is not just for collectors. The black paint finish was a practical finish sought after by Magnum photographers and reporters who found the black paint more discreet than their silver chrome counterparts. The Leica black paint finish then became synonymous with prestigious photographers such as Elliot Erwitt, Ralph Gibson, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Jim Marshall, and many others using such cameras to produce iconic images throughout the mid 20th century.

Jim Marshall Leica M4

Jim Marshall's M4 and Leicavit used to capture iconic images from Rock and Roll through the 50s and 70s. Read More Here


Fast forward, and we have before us the introduction of the Leica M10-R in Black Paint. But, of course, in the tradition of Black Paint cameras being more scarce in production quantities than their counterparts, the M10-R in Black Paint will be limited in its production. Thus, the M10-R Black Paint stands in the spotlight of both Leica's rich history and tradition in the making of fine cameras and their quest to be ever-evolving as they push the boundaries of what a 35mm camera can be.

Learn More About the M10-R Black Paint

Another fine example of a Black Paint Camera. This M3 even had matching Black Paint goggles and 35mm Summilux! 

By Ben Carpenter

June 22, 2021