Have you ever ran out of creative juice in photography? I know I did sometimes. To counter this situation I usually read photography blogs or went to Flickr for new inspirations. I even used Pinterest on my phone for some quick ideas when I was out on the road. But what happen if you are in the middle of a photo shoot and you suddenly have a blank mind? Well, it is time for Lensbaby! In this post I’ve summarized my experience with Lensbaby and answered some of the most common questions I got during my photography journey. So here we go!
What is a Lensbaby?
Interesting name right? Is this a brand or a new photography term? In summary, Lensbaby is a line of lens that gives you selective focus with great bokeh effect. In English, Lensbaby is a lens that once you mount it on the camera you can adjust the angle of the Lensbaby to where you want to focus. Everything else will be blurry except the area you focused in the photo.
You may wonder who would want to use Lensbaby? Photo is all about sharpness right and who would want a blurry photo? It even looks like a plastic toy and only amateur photographers would like to use it. I have the same thought at the beginning but don’t underestimate the power of Lensbaby. Many professional photographers and wedding photographers now use Lensbaby as their creative lens. Overall, this is a Lens to go when you want to stand out from the crowd with photo creativity.
What effect does the Lensbaby do exactly?
It is kind of hard to explain a picture in words so I’ve attached a few pictures I took for your reference.
What are the pros and cons of Lensbaby?
1)You get the focus and bokeh like no other lens.
2)You get instant creativity.
3)You get to start out Macro photography for under $50 dollars (more details below).
1)It takes time to practice to get the focus right.
2)You need to manually change aperture.
3)Fixed focal length.
What are the different types of Lensbaby?
You can check out my resources page for more details but here is the summary of the different types of Lensbaby:
This Lensbaby comes with either a 50mm or a 35mm optical glass. It’s built on a ball and socket system so that photographers can select the focus on a tilted plane. I highly suggest this Lensbaby for all photographers even if this is the first one you start out with. One of the most important feature is that you DON’T need to squeeze and hold the lens for the focus point.
This is the newest line of the Lensbaby. It has a fix f5.6 aperture and you will need to hold the lens to the angle that you want to focus when you press the shutter release button. This this is the lowest price Lensbaby available on the market.
Similar to Spark this lens requires the photographer to hold the focus by squeezing and bending the lens. The only difference is the MUSE comes with a double glass optics.
This is the fisheye version of Lensbaby with fixed focal length.
Lensbaby creative aperture kit
The apertures disks allow you to get various bokeh shapes in your photos. Any out of focus area will have the shape you used in the lens. For example you put a heart shape aperture disk in the Lensbaby, all the out of focus areas will now have hearts in it!
Lensbaby macro kit
I love macro photography and the Lensbaby macro kit allows you to enter this field without the high price. All you need is to screw in the lens in front of your Lensbaby to get macro features. Please note this does not work in all types of Lensbaby so please do the proper research before buying.
Lastly, why should you consider a Lensbaby?
1) You cannot replicate the Lensbaby effect in Lightroom or Photoshop. Even if you can it doesn’t look organic.
2) Sometimes you just want to take picture without thinking about aperture, shutter speed, composition and tuning the sweet spot.
3) You feel GREAT when people ask how you did that in Photoshop, you simply reply this photo is straight out of my memory card!
4) You enjoy the process of playing and experimenting different effects. The whole world is a creative playground with Lensbaby.
5) You can create custom aperture to take great pictures day and night.
What do you think about the Lensbaby? Do you have any experience with it? Which model did you get? Share them below!