My Lensbaby SCOUT, baby!

I figured when trying out a new lens not much care should be put into it at all. I have had this lens for a while, but due to the winter the ‘try-outs’ had been put on hold. My interest focussed purely on the outcome of the pictures rather than technique, skill and precision of photography. The following images have been taken and edited in a matter of hours.

About the Lensbaby

If you have an SLR camera, do not have much money for different lenses and you long to try out new things, the Lensbaby branch is just for you! Not only that, but if you are bored of taking the ‘everyday kind of photo’, Lensbaby offers various lenses with which you can change the optics to create different creative effects to experiment with.

The award-winning Lensbaby Composer is an example of their creative lens. The design is based on a ball and socket configuration. This allows you to bend the lens, which adjusts the focus on different areas of your viewpoint. I myself have tested the Lensbaby SCOUT, a “versatile, fun and affordable option for Fisheye photography”. It is also compatible with the Lensbaby Optic Swap System, but I only have the fish-eye option so far. The SCOUT is the first non-bendable lens that Lensbaby produces, which means you do not have to take time learning how to bend a lens. Though what is important to know is that it has manual aperture value (using discs that you can change inside the lens) and manual focus.

The lens is extremely light, compact and can even be used for macro photography. It is almost freaky how close you can get to an object, with the fish-eye optic, whilst capturing the entire surroundings as well. I could take pictures of the pores on your nose if I wanted to! I didn’t do just that, but I must have looked like a fool taking photos inches away from the wall at Haarlem Central Station. To be honest I don’t know why I never heard of these lenses before, because I want to get them all and all their optics!!

Enough talk, here are the pictures, enjoy!

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Original.

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The Fork

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Bond’s Light

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Enter Haarlem

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Holding Lens and Pointing

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Leaving Haarlem

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Colourful Construction

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Inside the Tunnel

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Sticker

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Dual Colour at its BEST

The Sun: Reloaded

The winter can be attractive looking, but its coldness keeps its distance until it sees an opportunity to strike. For some time now the winter has attempted to drain the source of all energy. With the lack of vitamin D all guard is down. Psychological imprisonment is the enemies weapon of choice during the harsh winters of which emotional shutdown is the result. But we have survived. Slowly but surely the sun is loading its power to feed each and every one of us a positive life. The sun acts like the heart of the resistance, which unlocks our gates and allows us to climb out of our caves. The energy is spreading amongst all of us, it cannot be stopped and you play an important role in the transmission of energy that can set us free. .

Ladies and gentlemen, spring is near and so is the freedom of summer. Let me see a smile on your face and don’t forget to stop and enjoy the sun for a while today, and tomorrow and the day after that. Live long and enjoy life.

I am sorry for those living further up in the Northern hemisphere, but just so you know, the sun will come to you too!

Waiting Area Bus driver On the road Skipping in action

Me…and Christmas.

What is Christmas. Is it an annual celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ? Or is it an easy in for corporations to make money of yearlong traditions? Or maybe it is that special time of the year where your patience on irritating shopping tunes and nagging kids is tested!

It is just odd how poor parents forcefully spend money on presents for their kids and say it came from Santa Claus, or the fact that Santa only provides gifts for the appropriate religions. It doesn’t make Mr. Claus look like a very good person.
Don’t forget all those Christmas lights, it’s a great time of the year to be firing up those electricity bills and killing the world softly. Sustainability is important, yet Christmas comes first!

All emotions aside, Christmas does bring out the artist in many people. Houses are lit up and even trees are twinkling. It sure is nice to have our streets decorated with lights when our days are shortest. Christmas would be useless in summer. On that note, does the Australian Santa wear shorts when he drops of his treats?

It is understandable for so many people to have different attitudes towards Christmas. To many it gives sense of calm, hope, prosperity and even a reason to celebrate something with the family. Though others can be reminded of their sorrow and loneliness.

It is easy to describe the things you see, but hard to understand them. Skipping Christmas to be far away from city lights has been an annual tradition for me, though the Santa hat has never been forgotten. This year a house up the hill from Valbonne provided beds for family and friends. Christmas might not be celebrated much, but still these days have always been celebrated with the presence of warmth and a good night sleep.

I might not be a fan of Christmas, but I certainly make use of the time. Some people might not like Christmas, and for those I wish they have better days to celebrate something. Have you ever felt how painful beauty can be?

Christmas is a reunion of the people, so next time, share your story with the person next to you. Who knows somebody doesn’t  need a friend, but just a story to listen to.

The following pictures, taken at the Valbonne Christmas market, are imagery of how I see Christmas.ImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImage

 

Summer in Fall

The Netherlands, this is that one day of the year that we should all enjoy.

Autumn is well on its way and the cold kicks the tendency to stay seated behind glass forward. The adjustment to the new season forms a tiny depression for which summer will be missed. Though the dryness of fall extends her true colours. Her divine appearance waves a beautiful death for winter is watching from afar.

Brown, red and yellow are the new grey. Trees are bolding and its leaves rain down like tears, or hairs unable to hold on to its scalp. Still there is that one day where summer offers her last farewell. Temperatures are rocket high, and life once again highlights smiles on people’s faces. Even those strolling to work against their will, enjoy the last day of summer. Soon it will rain and cities will turn into swamps. Then, we must be patient and wait for the temperatures to plummet far enough for our world to be covered in white mystery.

The Experience

ImageRuigoord, the cultural harbour of Amsterdam. Truly a magical place where individuals are overwhelmed by the urge to be creative. The purity of the mind becomes irresistible, and so once you set foot on this land of art, it seems as if the world around you disappears.  The Ruigoord Church (used for the widest possible range of musical events) is a landmark of this off the grid village (Ruigoord), where we can forget our normal lives and live life as an entirely different persona.

On the 23rd of June, 2012 the race for survival had been put on hold. As a thunderstorm cancels a football match, All Is One brings out the holistic in every one of us. Age and race thaws into the most incredibly flavoured Sunday. The wind whirls recklessly past the church, but the sun’s heat and the spirit of the justly built community, harmonizes everyone’s intellect.

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All sorts of colourful people lend a hand in building what later can only be described as an ideal world. Painters, musicians, woodcutters, storytellers, debaters, cameramen, psychologists, and many more share their knowledge and involve others. If you would be interested in Yoga in exchange for a massage, or a guide through this well protected paradise, it can be arranged.  The day is filled with all sorts of activities in which your soul can absorb wholesomeness.

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By the time the sun had set, the event changed from a do-it-yourself art room, to a mystical party arena. The cold starts to settle, but still more people are entering Ruigoord. Campfires are lit and inside the church deejays like DJ Isis control the crowd. Still, Barretijden (DJ crew outside) continues to entertain, and even when the rain comes plundering down, a last-minute party tent is set up for those loving the open-air. “Don’t forget to go home”, one of the few uncorrupted slogans out there that revealed the true reality of this event.

Did you miss All Is One Experience? Not to worry, because there are many more to come, and ideally, in decades going to such an event won’t be necessary, because the world will have become one.Image

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Viewfinder from the Past

Here they are, the pictures taken in 2012, from a vintage, 1953 смена камера (Russian for Smena Camera).

Unfortunately the scanner has a way to make scanned images look even older than they truly are, and the colours are more faded than the original. Nevertheless these images do prove that old machines can still produce wicked things. Analog photography is so much more challenging than the digital world. There are limited picture that can be taken each role, and developing them is expensive. Still the results are much more satisfying than when a luxurious, automatic, he does it himself camera is used. (Of course this is an attempt to make the images uncovered below look more precious, because the digital age rocks as well!)

Please do jump into a vintage store sometimes and have a look around, who knows you might find your own time machine! Besides, if you do not know it works? Google will know!

How far can you go?

The following picture is a one of a kind. How often do you see tombstones being sold next to the apples and melons?

The moment a camera was placed in my hands for a viewfinder to capture beautiful images, destiny made its path for me. My obsession with cameras was not clear until I placed the facts on a sheet of paper. Purchasing 7 video/photo cameras in a year (broken or not) seemed somewhat irrational. Experimenting with different lenses, brands and anything unusual leaked into a much bigger pool than just a hobby.

On an underground Russian market, bordering the Tallinn (Estonian capital) railway station, an interesting looking camera attracted my eyes. The camera looked antique, but still in excellent condition. After buying the camera, wrapped in an interesting looking case, a short research was necessary. Turns out this is a Lomo, of which it is one first of the Smena models (1953) from the USSR. The camera was designed to produce 8mm film, but the 35mm fits inside as well. Only in order to use modern film, an empty film role case must be placed up-side-down inside the camera, for the film to flow from the original case into this empty role. After capturing all the images, the film must manually be rolled back into its original case. Of course without any light being able to damage the film. After some experimentation the film was developed and the outcome is extraordinary!

The images shown below are taken of the Smena in a photo studio. The photos that this 60 year old model took will be presented very soon!

This is something exquisite rapped into something beautiful. The case fits perfectly around the camera

The camera with the case open. With the screw underneath the two are stuck together. It is easy to take a photo with the case open, which is what modern cameras miss nowadays.

Here she is without her dress