06 Aug At the Beach with the Lensbaby Velvet

Source: Valérie Jardin

You probably know by now that I’m all about creativity in the field. I get bored with post processing, photography for me is all about being out with my camera, not spending hours in front of a computer.

I recently acquired a Lensbaby Velvet 56mm lens for my Fujifilm XPro2. If you’re not familiar with Lensbaby, they’ve been making really fun creative focus lenses for many years. I used to play with the their Composer system during my Canon days. The Velvet is definitely not a lens you absolutely need, but it sure is a ton of fun! It is quite challenging to use, all manual focus, it will definitely slow you down and make you think. It’s about being very discerning and finding the right subject to fit the look. It’s also about finding the right balance in the aperture you choose and making sure the eye of the viewer is drawn to the subject(s) most in focus. Not too much softness, not too little… And, more importantly, forgetting your preconceived idea that sharpness is a must and embracing the dreamy soft look that you can achieve in camera without spending any time in the digital darkroom.

I found that the dreamy look is particularly suited for the beautiful Classic Chrome film simulation of the Fujifilm cameras. So I set out for a walk on the beach near my family home in Normandy and saw it in a new way.

Just remember that… Sharpness is a bourgeois concept ~ Henri Cartier-Bresson😉


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