Go Wide, Baby


© Bob Krist

I love the Lensbaby line, those lenses that help you bend and shape your depth of field; and I’ve had one of each generation (the babies are growing up!). All of the babies thus far have been about a 50mm focal length, which means for folks like me, a DX format shooter, it’s actually more of a telephoto, a 75mm.

At that focal length, the Lensbabies have been useful for me on stuff like portraits, food shots, and detail shots,  like this one.

But what I’ve really wanted was a wide angle version so I could go out and do some landscapes and the like. They have, in the past, offered a screw in wide angle, but these were usually just video camera auxiliary lenses.

They were heavy and clunky and made it hard to focus the Lensbaby.

I’m using the model called the Composer now, and it’s extremely easy to work with, and with the dual element lens, the sharp part of the photo is really sharp.  And now, there’s an equally elegant and usable wide angle attachment. I just got it and am looking forward to taking it to the Indian Ocean on a job next week.

I can just visualize all those soft topped palm trees—-oh yeah, it’ll make me look hip and deconstructed… and that is a tall order! Hit the jump to take a look at the wide baby.

That’s the Composer on the right.

photo courtesy www.lensbaby.com

photo courtesy www.lensbaby.com

It’s really easy to work with, compared to the earlier versions and below is the wideangle that is now offered. When screwed in, it nests deep into the Composer and doesn’t really create too much more height. And it’s light enough that it doesn’t pull the lens out of focus.

It turns the 50mm into about a 21mm, which means that it’s about a 32mm in DX land…still not as wide as I’d like but plenty wide enough to play with in landscape settings.

Kudos to the Lensbaby folks for continually refining and reinventing themselves…and not forgetting us DX shooters!

When I get back from this next assignment, I’ll post a sample or two with the wide baby.

Now, if somebody would just make a compact, sharp 18mm f/1.4 prime lens, we DXers would be entering the golden age!


photo courtesy www.lensbaby.com

This entry was posted in Photo Gear, Photo Techniques.


  1. Jerry Lombardo March 31, 2009 at 11:25 am #

    Hi Bob-

    Safe trip!

  2. Bill Reade March 31, 2009 at 4:54 pm #

    I agree, I shoot food for a living, the Lens Baby gives me the control I could only get with a bellows on a 4×5. Have a greeat trip can’t wait to see your work in print.

  3. David Kay April 1, 2009 at 3:37 pm #

    Hi Bob,
    You convinced me to give it a try! Have a great trip!

  4. Renee Giffroy April 1, 2009 at 9:08 pm #

    The lensbaby got my attention a few years ago when I first saw it, but it seemed too difficult to use. Looks like the newer versions have gotten much easier. Maybe I’ll take another look. p.s. I like this shot much better in color!

  5. Michael C. Snell April 2, 2009 at 3:05 pm #

    Nice, Bob! I, too, have the Composer and have been wishing it were wider. I’ll have to check this out. Happy travels!

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