Lensbaby Challenge: Week 3


It was good to get out of my environment this week and try some different subject matter – although my week did start at the farmer’s market so a couple of images of food and flowers were made.For this week’s setup I used the Sweet 35 optic again, and added in the Pinhole/Zone Plate optic.  The Pinhole optic was the one that finally pushed me over the edge a year ago; I was so frustrated I put my Lensbaby gear in a drawer, closed it, and walked away.

This time I was determined that it was going to be different.  I spent some time reading about the optic, and realized that I was confusing the “switch” – the slider that converts it from Pinhole to Zone Plate.  I had understood Pinhole images to be sharp at infinity (well as sharp as you can get when you’re shooting through plastic film) – but mine were always very blurry.  That’s because I had it on Zone Plate.  The image below on the left is with the Pinhole set; the image on the right is the Zone Plate.  This reminds me of the time when I took a four-week online Lensbaby class.  I was mistakenly using the Plastic optic, instead of the Double Glass optic, and was so frustrated because nothing was sharp.  Lesson learned:  you have to really understand the equipment you’re using.

Lastly a word of caution, if you’re shooting with the Pinhole optic be prepared for a lot of sensor spot cleaning in post.  I mean a lot.  I just had my camera cleaned, and I still had more than 30 spots on the image below by shooting through this optic.  And you will see them – they are pronounced round circles with sharp edges.



  1. Leanne Cole

    I have just got into Lensbaby and have been having fun with them. I don’t have the sweet 35, but I do have the sweet 50, I think I also have that optic, you have inspired me to take it to the city today to see what I can get with it. I love what you have done.

  2. pamphotography

    Hi Leanne – its great to hear from you! I’ve been wondering about the Sweet 50, you’ll have to let me know what you think. I was thinking about buying a composer that fits my Fuji (right now I’m using a lens converter), and they only come bundled with optics. I hope you had fun in the city and captured some great images.

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