Christmas with a Lensbaby

Snow White ornament, Lensbaby, bokeh, Christmas

I have always been a fan of the selective focus images created by a Lensbaby. However, even the cheaper Edge model is a little out of my price range for what is essentially a creative lens & not one I would necessarily use everyday. I purchased the Spark a year ago but have found it somewhat awkward to operate & certainly tricky to achieve consistent results. Consequently, I recently bought a second hand Composer (it’s the model with the interchangeable, magnetic aperture rings) & have been experimenting with it ever since.

Now I realise you can achieve the effect generated by these lenses through Photoshop or other similar post production software & believe me, I’m not one of those photographers who obsesses about getting everything right “in camera”. Don’t get me wrong, when it comes to composition I put a lot of thought into getting it right before I press the shutter but once I download the results, I’d only be fooling myself if I said they didn’t benefit from a little curves adjustment, hue/saturation layer tweaking & a touch of sharpening before being finished. However, there is something much more creative & certainly enjoyable watching the focus point change on the back of the camera before pressing the shutter as opposed to doing it later.

The festive photograph above seemed to lend itself well to a Lensbaby. Focusing on Snow’s face while having Father Christmas blurred yet still distinguishable in the background seemed to add to the festive spirit.

Week 46

Settings: f/11, 10 seconds, ISO 100, 55mm focal length

Set up. With the camera on a tripod & in AV mode, select a mid-aperture. Initially focus in on the tree. As you press the shutter, zoom out steadily (not too fast or the light trails won’t be as bright).

Opinion. This was the one of the first pictures I attempted to take for my project, back in January. However, I wasn’t happy with the results. So here we are 45 weeks later (& after the purchase of a significantly more stable tripod!) to have another go. Still not perfect but I’m improving with time!