@Lensbaby Twist 60, rebirth of a classic, quirky, beautiful optic w/@SeeInANewWay

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Lensbaby’s optical engineers have done it again.  After moving away from the toy camera replication type lenses into more complicatedly designed optics with lenses like the Sweet 35 and 50, Edge 50 and 80 and the Velvet 56, they’ve replicated the swirly vortex of the old Joseph Petzval designed optic from 174 years ago with this new Twist 60.  Don’t dismiss this lens as pure kitsch, as it is remarkably sharp where you’d want it for a portrait lens (middle frame) and while, wide open you’ll see some pretty severe vignetting to go along with the twirly bokeh, this adds to its charm and vintage qualities.  Portrait painters of yesteryear used many different brushes to create their renditions, and this can certainly be seen as a wonderfully specialized brush for the portrait photographer, along with those looking to add some fun to shots of any kind. 

While perhaps not an effect to suit everyone’s taste, it is one that has found a place for certain portrait and fine art photographers looking to add in camera effects to visibly differentiate their look.  With other companies seeing the value in chasing this corner of the market with lenses like the Kickstarter Petzval clone and the Trioplan Soap bokeh lenses that are looking to be launched on the market, it’s obvious that there is some demand for these newer versions of throwback optical designs.  The question though, is how much are photographers looking for these optical effects willing to pay?

Priced at a very modest $280 for the Twist 60 Lens (optic and non-tilting metal lens body housing) available in Canon EF, Nikon F and Sony E mount, or $180 for the optic solely, the Twist 60 is certainly worth a look.  You can find it at Adorama HERE, B&H HERE or directly through Lensbaby HERE.

C’mon in for more example shots, some technical mumbo jumbo and my thoughts on this lens…

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*Lensbaby Composer Pro for MILC Cameras, a system within a system.

April 2nd, 2012 – Lensbaby has announced it’s second MILC dedicated product which now gives the MILC (Mirror-less Interchangeable Lens Compact) systems, micro 4/3, NEX, and NX users access to every optic and add on in the Lensbaby system.  Where the Tilt Transformer  for Micro 4/3 and NEX cameras allowed for the Composer Front to be used, it was limited to the Lensbaby optics that were compatible.  Now, the Sweet 35, Fisheye, Edge 80, Macro Converters and all standard optic swap inserts are entirely compatible!  It’s like immediately gaining access to a bunch of new lenses for these young systems clamoring for more affordable and diverse options.  More after the jump…

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*Lensbaby’s brand new Edge 80 Optic!

February 14th, 2012 – Uh oh, don’t look now.  Lensbaby has further diversified their lineup with a sharp, solid portrait lens with the same quirky capability of that signature Lensbaby look…  It’s been a busy winter for Lensbaby.  Out now and available immediately, the new Edge 80 optic.  Like the Sweet 35 before it, the Edge 80 has the ability to control the aperture of the optic without having to use the magnetic drop in disks necessary with the standard optics.  An 80mm f/2.8 Flat Field focus Optic with a 12 blade circular, user controlled aperture mechanism is great for anything from portraits to street shooting.  Read on for more examples and links…

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*Lensbaby’s NEW Macro Converters!

Lensbaby's new Macro Converters! image©lensbaby

February 2nd, 2012 – Just announced and available immediately,  the new 8mm and 16mm Lensbaby Macro Converters, compatible with all LB Optics!

Using Lensbaby's new 16mm macro converter.

read on for my take as well as price, specs and links…

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