Leica has announced a new special edition camera, the Leica D-Lux 7 Vans x Ray Barbee Edition. Skateboarding, photography, music – these three activities make up the world of Ray Barbee, who has been a team rider for Vans for over 20 years. The pioneer of modern skateboarding is well-known for the elegant style that he also conveys to his Leica photography and his music. It was a real honor for Ray Barbee to join forces with the iconic brands of Vans and Leica, to design a camera. The limited, special edition, Leica D-Lux 7 Vans x Ray Barbee is a camera that truly captures the feel of the skateboarding scene.
“Sometimes I want the viewers to see what I saw, but more importantly I want them to see what I didn’t see in my own image. There’s a lot of beauty in appreciating different perspectives.” – Ray Barbee
The limited, special edition Leica D-Lux 7 “Vans x Ray Barbee” delights with the iconic Vans checkerboard pattern. The top side is adorned with the engraved signature of Ray Barbee, skateboarder, musician, and photographer. The Ray Barbee quote, “The joy is in capturing the journey” appears on one side of the dust bag specially designed for this camera; on the other side are the proverbial words by Ernst Leitz II, that launched the production of the Leica I: “Ich entscheide hiermit: Es wird riskiert” (“I hereby decide: it will be risked”, 1924). The carrier strap and dust bag in petrol green, perfectly complement the camera’s black and white design.
Limited to 800 units worldwide.
The collaboration between Leica, Ray Barbee, and Vans is not just limited to the Leica D-Lux 7 “Vans x Ray Barbee”. Vans is also producing complementary T-shirts and shoes with checker-board lining, quotes by Ray Barbee and Ernst Leitz II, and red shoelace eyelets as a nod to Leica.
Rarely seen without his Leica M6, Ray Barbee brings the same unique perspective to the art of black and white analog photography as he brings to his other passions: the do-it-yourself attitude that has made Barbee successful as a musician and skateboarder is also evident in his photographs, which he has been developing in the darkroom for over a decade. His images are at times loud, at times quiet; they also preserve the explorations, discoveries, and experiences he has had in his own life. Despite the absence of color, every single one of his images radiates joie de vivre, combined with a message about making the most of time.
Ray Barbee enjoys the balancing act: as far as he is concerned, it is but a short step between the extroverted street sport scene and the observational appreciation of the photographic moment.
Ray Barbee is an American skateboarder, musician, and photographer originally from San Jose, California. He started skateboarding in 1984 when he was in seventh grade and has grown to become one of the most iconic skateboarders of his generation. His passion and do-it-yourself attitude, which distinguish him as a musician and as a skateboarder, also define his photography. He has been developing his own photos for the last ten years. Ray’s seamless approach to capturing a moment, while nurturing the image through the development process and bringing it to fruition in the darkroom, make his photographs as humble and honest as the man behind the lens.
More info on Leica’s website.