lensbaby or photoshop?


TPF Noob!
Jan 18, 2010
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Detroit MI
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I'm a big fan of the soft focus that lenses such as the lensbaby composer produce. I'm thinking about buying one but am wondering if its worth the money. I seem to be able to produce similar results in photoshop. Does anyone here own one? can you tell me the advantages of using a lensbaby instead of just photoshoping in a soft focus effect?
The Lensbaby's effects are different from faked effects in Photoshop. I prefer the original Lensbaby, which was characterized by very poorly-corrected edges with moderate center sharpness, and introduced a myriad of optical flaws into the image. Photoshop fakes typically look "canned" or "too perfect" and "too uniform". The differences can be subtle or monumental, depending on the particular Lensbaby, the shooting scenario, and the degree of skill of the pixel re-arranger who is trying to imitate the Lensbaby.

The newer Lensbaby models, like the 2.0, and the third iteration,called the Control Freak model (now supplanted by a new model that has better ergonomics) have higher-quality, coated, multi-element lens systems, and produce a vastly different, cleaner, neater look than the original Lensbaby.

There are many things that can be faked after the fact, but genuine LENS-based adjustments to the light that the film or sensor actually records is impossible to fake. it can be simulated, or mimicked, but not equalled. Many people however, are perfectly happy with manipulating the pixels in post to try and create something interesting; when you use a Lensbaby, you are committing to a soft-focus lens image,and are demonstrating your comittment to trying to MAKE a soft-focus lens original image...not playing it safe and faking it later, or not....so the difference in approach is quite monumental.
My vote is for Photoshop. You have more control and that includes deciding that the image looks better with out the soft focus effect. But then there are few things I enjoy more then loosing myself in PS.
Thanks for the advice, I think i will go ahead and buy a lensbaby simply because it seems like it will be fun to play with and see what i can create.

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