I was itching to try out the Lensbaby when I got the email from Gabe that it was Burlesque night, and the crew was going out for food and good cheer. I was curious about how I would like manual-focusing in low light. Meh. I've been doing it my whole life. How about manual focusing with tilt adjustments. Meh... almost. The D700 has a bright viewfinder, but it ain't like using a 4x loupe on a 4x5 ;) So my initial shots with the double glass lens and an f/2.8 aperture disc were just getting used to focusing:
The plastic lens has the most amazing attributes - look at the crazy aura around the light source on the left top side. I've also noticed that it's great for softening skin...
And the Zone Plate/Pinhole had interesting results, too. It's interesting to be able to emulate the effects of film-based plastic cameras like the Diana, pinholes and Holga, with the added benefit of plane of focus control. And digital chimping, too. It does take away some of the feelings of, "Did I get it? I can;t wait to process the film!" but in exchange you get the assurances of "yes!" and "next!" Personally, I like that for my current process.
After having a few drinks and friends headed home, I took a tour around North 6th street with the Lensbaby. Swapping out lens elements, aperture discs and hand-holding everything. Thank goodness the D700 is soooo very good in low light.
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Verdict: I'm hooked on my Lensbaby. And that last shot knocks me out. Williamsburg indeed has a heart.