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131– The Lensbaby Composer Review

Pho­tog­ra­phy pod­cast #131 reviews a Lens­baby lens. Lens­baby lenses are spe­cial in that they have a sweet spot of sharp focus in the cen­ter of the lens and blur out toward the edges. In addi­tion to this (and where the magic truly lives), you can actu­ally bend the lens to move that sweet spot of focus around the frame. The par­tic­u­lar lens I tested was a 50mm Lens­baby Com­poser with dou­ble glass optic. It’s great fun and fairly easy to use though you need to know in advance that it’s a man­ual lens. It will still help you fig­ure out expo­sure based on your ISO and aper­ture ring you select, but you’ll be going old school and man­u­ally focus­ing this bad-boy. It’s worth it though as you can make some really cre­ative in-camera images with this lens. It’s a fab­u­lous lens to juice up your creativity.

Thanks to The Cam­era Store (The largest cam­era store in Cal­gary, Alberta, Canada)  for spon­sor­ing the Photography.ca pod­cast and for allow­ing me to test this lens.

Click the player at the end of this post to lis­ten to (or down­load) the 11ish minute podcast.

My hairless cat Baci with the Lensbaby Composer. Note his sharp central eye while everything else fades to blur

My hair­less cat Baci with the Lens­baby Com­poser. Note his sharp cen­tral eye while every­thing else fades to blur

 

Lensbaby Composer

 

This is an image of the Jacques-Cartier Bridge in Montreal, Quebec. It was very easy to see and capture this effect in camera.

This is an image of the Jacques-Cartier Bridge in Mon­treal, Que­bec. It was very easy to see and cap­ture this effect in camera.

 

This is an image of the Jacques-Cartier Bridge in Montreal, Quebec. Because the bridge was not centered in the lens, I had to physically move the sharp sweet spot of focus by actually bending the lens.  This image took a little longer to compose.

An image of the Jacques-Cartier Bridge in Mon­treal, Que­bec. Because the bridge was not cen­tered in the lens, I had to phys­i­cally move the sharp sweet spot of focus by actu­ally bend­ing the lens and thus the image took longer to compose.

 

Norco Bicycle shot with the Lensbaby Composer

Norco Bicy­cle shot with the Lens­baby Composer

 

Links /resources men­tioned in this podcast:

Lens­baby Com­poser user guide
The Lens­baby Com­poser  and other Lens­ba­bies at The Cam­era Store
Tilt shift lenses for land­scape pho­tog­ra­phy
Lens­baby 3G review

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Although ALL com­ments are appre­ci­ated, com­ment­ing directly in this blog is pre­ferred. Many thanks to Bare­foot, Troy Borque and Terry Babij for their com­ments from the last pod­cast. Thanks as well for the emails and wel­come to all the new mem­bers of the bul­letin board.

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You can down­load this pho­tog­ra­phy pod­cast directly by click­ing the pre­ced­ing link or lis­ten to it almost imme­di­ately with the embed­ded player.

Thanks for lis­ten­ing and keep on shooting!