A recent dawn

A recent dawn and another outing for my lightweight, back to basics camera kit.

Since I last wrote about it I have made a small change to the kit. I have swapped the 7artisans 35mm lens for a Meike 25mm f/1.8 lens. I was finding the jump from 12mm to 35mm a little large and the jump from 35mm to 55mm a little small. The 25mm sits more centrally between the 12mm and 55mm.

The reason I went with a 35mm lens rather than 25mm was because I found a 35mm a nice focal length for the way I “see” when out and about shooting personal work. So I  plan on using the 35mm when out with just a lens on the camera and no camera bag.

A recent dawn over Colpoy's Bay.

A couple of recent early mornings.

A couple of outings down to the Colpoy’s Bay shoreline for the sunrise. The first two outings for my recently assembled, lightweight, back to basics camera kit comprising of a small mirrorless camera body and three manual focus primes.

The first outing for the kit saw it and me caught in a thunderstorm and heavy rain shortly after the photo was taken. A 60 second exposure as it was a dark morning.

An outing for my lightweight camera kit.


The following morning saw a lot less cloud and an absence of thunder rumbling and heavy rain.

An outing for my lightweight camera kit.

Another walk, another lens test.

I managed to get out for a proper walk with the 7artisans 35mm f/1.2 lens attached to the camera recently. The first test was a quick walk around the yard when I had a couple of minutes.

Second impressions are that it’s an interesting lens, I can see it spending a lot of time on the camera. I still think it needs a lens hood so that’s something that needs sorting out before the next test.

A Day-Lily near the start of the walk. Shot wide open the lens produces some interesting background blur in the leaves behind the flower.

Testing the 7artisans 35mm lens.


An Umbellifer flower with the lens wide open at f/1.2 again.

Testing the 7artisans 35mm f/1.2 lens.

Not really an adapted lens but?

An extension of the adapted lens idea.

There’s a selection of manual focus prime lenses now being manufactured in a variety of camera mounts by some little known makers. They don’t have to be adapted to fit the camera but they’re not as optically corrected as modern lenses from the major manufacturers. I regard them as a variation on an adapted lens giving some interesting effects.

One of those manufacturers is 7artisans who build around half a dozen small manual focus primes in a few different camera mounts. This photo was taken with their 35mm f/1.2 lens on a very brief walk last weekend.

It’s my only outing with the lens so far so I haven’t really formed an opinion on it other than that with a fairly large front element close to the front of the lens it will probably benefit from a lens hood. Not something that I have bothered about with the adapted CCTV lenses I have been experimenting with.

An Orange Day-Lily photographed with the lens wide open at f/1.2 which produces an interesting, soft, out of focus rendering of the foliage in the background.

Not really an adapted lens but?

Another test of the 25mm CCTV lens.

Having fixed the focusing mechanism of the 25mm CCTV lens I was experimenting with I went for another walk with it. The first test/walk is here.

It turned out that while the focusing mechanism now works the lens now focusses well past infinity and no longer focusses as close at it had when the focusing mechanism wasn’t working properly. I haven’t decided if I’m going to dismantle the focusing mechanism again or just leave it as it is.

Old seed pods and new leaves. It seems strange for the old seed pods to be on the plant this time of year. The swirling around the edges of the frame is very obvious in this shot.

Old seed pods and new leaves.

Some interesting variegated leaves. The swirling around the edges and vignetting in the corners is less obvious in this shot.

25mm CCTV lens adapted to fit a mirrorless camera.

A walk with a 50mm CCTV lens.

A morning walk with the camera, this time testing a 50mm f/1.4 CCTV lens adapted to fit a mirrorless camera.

So far this lens seems optically the best of the three CCTV lenses I am testing. But one of the main reasons for experimenting with these lenses is their strange optical behaviour around the edges of the frame and in the backgrounds of images so this lens is a bit of a disappointment so far. I wasn’t expecting a $41 CAD (including shipping and the adapter) lens to be this good.

A Periwinkle flower after some overnight rain with the lens wide open at f/1.4. The flower seems to be fairly sharp considering it’s close to the edge of the frame and the lens was wide open.

Blue flower photographed with a CCTV lens.

Old seed pods and new leaves. I had photographed these seed pods last winter and was surprised to find that they were still on the plant months later surrounded by new leaves. Again, the seed pod seems fairly sharp even though it’s away from the center of the frame.

Fresh growth and seed pods.