Using the Lensbaby Edge 50 Lens For My Flower Photography

November 19, 2016  •  Leave a Comment

Zygocactus - 11/19/2016 - 6Zygocactus - 11/19/2016 - 6Stay connected with me via my Flower Newsletter for my latest gardening tips, behind the scenes photos and videos, and my latest photos.

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I am a member of the American Horticultural Society (AHS) and I make a donation for every product sold in my flower galleries.
As a long-time large format photographer, my brain is wired to seeing my subjects with total control over the focal plane.  I used a previous generation of Lensbaby lenses, but I lost interest because of the requirement of manually installed magnetic apertures.  I kept losing them and that basically interrupted my creative workflow.  

I recently bought the new lineup of Lensbaby optics because the aperture is now in the lens and they further improved the product line by implementing an optic swap system.  

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In the photo at the top of this article, I used the Edge 50 lens with an extension tube attached to allow me to fill the frame with the flower.  I was able to tilt the lens to mirror the plane of the stamen and get that sharp while the rest of the flower was soft because I used the aperture wide open.  The creative possibilities with this lens, just like large format, is only limited by the photographer's imagination.  

I am not into the miniaturization effects that are possible with this lens and other tilt-shift lenses.  I use this lens as a tool to communicate the essence of my subjects in a portable was that was only possible with my large format view cameras before.  Now I have another tool that I can use that is highly portable and fun to use.

The flower in this photo is from my Zygocactus, which I grow in my greenhouse.  I use this lens and the other Lensbaby optics on my Nikon F100 and F5 film cameras and my Nikon D810 DSLR.  

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-Tim Layton 

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Tim Layton
Darkroom & Large Format Photography
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