Join Tim Grey for an in-depth discussion in this video Using a Lensbaby, part of Photo Gear Weekly.
- A number of years ago I was introduced to the first Lensbaby lens, it was very interesting in that it's essentially just a flexible tube that can mount to your camera and has a lens element on the front. It produced some really interesting images, it's very similar to a view lens in that we're able to shift our sweet spot, a relatively small area of the frame will be in focus and we can choose exactly where within the frame we want that sweet spot to fall. Of course shooting with this lens was a little bit of a challenge, because we're stretching and squeezing in order to adjust our focus and then swiveling to find that sweet spot to position it just right in the frame and once you find the correct position, you've got to hold steady while you capture the image.
Fortunately, since that time, Lensbaby has updated their lens offerings, they've got a wide variety of accessory lenses, I can actually add a magnifier or a close focus adapter to the front and now when I swivel the lens, once I find my right position, it stays, so I don't have to worry about holding steady all the time and I have a knob for focusing, rather than that push-pull capability. The effect is really pretty cool, I actually got inspired recently to break out my Lensbaby lenses again. I saw some wonderful flower photography by Kathleen Clemons, really great images, and unique images and we're able to capture these images.
They look very ethereal, dream-like, very interesting with this adaptive lens, this really interesting lens. I found, for example, some great sunglasses here, all sorts of wonderful colors, reflecting some of the buildings of the city here that are illuminated over on the other side of the street and so I thought it was an interesting subject to play around with the Lensbaby and see what I can come up with, essentially trying to get really close on some of this color and you'll see again, I need to adjust my position, it does take a little bit of work to get everything lined up just the way I want it, get the lens positioned, shift my position, fine tune the focus, and then capture an image, right about there, and of course in this case, it's even more tricky because I'm needing to pay attention to my reflection, the reflection of the front lens element in the sunglasses here, but lots of fun and a great way to create some interesting photos.
I encourage you to take a look at the various options, lots of accessories. What started as a single Lensbaby lens is now an entire family of interesting lenses that can be a lot of fun to use.