Cosmic Photo Challenge: Independent Lenses in Various States.

This is my contribution to the Cosmic Photo Challenge: A State of Independence.

My first thought was a selection of juvenile birds that were independent of the adults when the photos were taken. That idea was quickly followed by the fact that this is the Canada Day long weekend so I considered a Canada Day post.

Then I thought about an ongoing project, testing a variety of lenses on a modern mirrorless camera. Most of the lenses I have tested so far are (or were) made by independent lens makers. Companies that make lenses to fit other makers cameras.

Some of the lenses are in a bit of a state through heavy use or being designed to be almost disposable. Which is why I titled the post “Independent Lenses in Various States” as a rewording of the challenge.

To the lenses.

A Periwinkle flower photographed with a 35mm f/1.7 CCTV lens adapted to fit an Olympus mirrorless camera. Shot with the lens wide open at f/1.7.

This was the first CCTV lens I purchased and I found it interesting enough to purchase a couple more. They’re also known as C-mount lenses having a screw mount for attaching to CCTV cameras with the appropriate mount.

Some of these CCTV lens are very cheap. I wonder if they’re designed to be almost disposable, used where or when a lens could get damaged somehow. The lens was $38 CAD including shipping, the adapter to fit it to the camera and two extension tubes to go between the lens and the camera to allow it to focus on closer subjects.

A Single Blue Flower.

Ivy growing up a tree trunk with a 25mm f/1.4 CCTV lens. This is one of the lenses I ordered after experimenting with the 35mm CCTV lens used for the Periwinkle flower above.

Stopping the lens down from maximum aperture causes severe vignetting so this was shot with the lens wide open at f/1.4. Wide open the lens still vignettes a bit and as the image circle produced by the lens barely covers the sensor there’s some interesting swirling around the edges of the photo.

I have already had to repair the focusing mechanism on the lens after it first jammed and then stopped focussing on distant subjects. That probably explains why the lens cost $36 CAD including shipping and the adapter to fit it to the camera.

Swirling around the edges.

Last years seed pods and new leaves with a 50mm f/1.4 CCTV lens. Shot wide open at f/1.4. This was the other CCTV lens I ordered after experimenting with the 35mm CCTV lens.

Surprisingly good performance for $41 CAD including shipping and the adapter to fit it to the camera. So I’m finding it a bit disappointing so far.

Fresh growth and seed pods.

A Bracken frond taken with a Vivitar 35mm f/1.9 lens I purchased used in the 1970s. Shot wide open at f/1.9. At the time Vivitar were a U.S. brand who designed lenses that were then manufactured by various Japanese lens makers.

The same design was built with a variety of camera mounts allowing the lens to fit a wide range of camera bodies.

I have given this lens a hard life over the years and it now feels like it could fall apart each time I use it.

Bracken frond with an adapted lens from the 1970s.

Dandelion clocks (seed heads) with a “silvernose” Olympus OM Zuiko 50mm f/1.8 lens I purchased in 1976. As with the other shots this was taken with the lens wide open, in this case f/1.8.

I don’t know if it can be classed as an independent lens. It wasn’t designed for the camera being used and requires an adapter but both the lens and camera were made by Olympus.

The silvernose refers to a polished aluminium ring on the front of the lens and signifies that it is one of the early Olympus OM Zuiko lenses. This is another lens that has had a hard life. It has been dropped a few times and was once bounced along the gutter of Charing Cross Road while attached to my Olympus OM1 when it slipped from my shoulder as I ran for the last tube train of the night. A few years later it was being dried out in an oven after being submerged in Georgian Bay.

Dandelion seed heads.

An afternoon walk, 18th June.

I have physiotherapy on Tuesday and Friday mornings. As the weather was nice I decided to go for a walk with the camera on Tuesday afternoon to continue exercising my leg and arm.

For the walk I used my oldest lens, an Olympus OM Zuiko 50mm f/1.8 I purchased with an Olympus OM1 in 1976. I also decided to keep the lens set at its maximum aperture, f/1.8, for all the shots.

The lens is one of the early OM system lenses know as silvernose (or silver nose depending on the reference) because they have a shiny brushed aluminium front on the filter mount. They’re often single coated rather than the multi coating used on modern lenses. My copy of the lens has had a hard life over the years, it was once submerged in Georgian Bay and dried out in an oven.

Some interesting variegated Hosta leaves.

Some variegated leaves in the spring.

A small group of Dandelion seed heads. I didn’t spot the falling seed until I posted the photo on Instagram a day later.

Dandelion seed heads.

Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge: Lawn Ornaments.

I thought that I would take a light hearted approach to Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge: Lawn Ornaments.

First, a common lawn ornament around here recently. After a long winter followed by a wet spring the Dandelions seem very late this year. Taken recently on one of my tests of a 35mm CCTV lens adapted to fit a mirrorless camera.

Dandelion seed head.

Now the most commonly seen lawn ornament in our yard last summer. I spent quite a lot of time lying behind this Olympus lawn ornament photographing birds and mammals.

Getting down to eye level.

Finally, a Clover flower in the lawn photographed with the Olympus lawn ornament last summer. Taken when the birds and mammals wouldn’t cooperate.

Clover flower in monochrome.

Tuesday Photo Challenge: Trail.

This is my contribution to the Tuesday Photo Challenge: Trail.

As my walks around the neighborhood involve a selection of trails I thought I would go with a selection of photos taken when walking them rather than photos of the actual trails.

Some Dandelion clocks taken on a walk after the challenge was posted.

Dandelion seed heads.

A hodgepodge of tree trunks in the autumn.

Autumn tree trunks.

A Maple leaf on snow.

Casting a shadow on the snow.

Looking up at some autumn colour.

Fisheye autumn colour.

Fresh spring greens and old fungi.

Wordless Wednesday.

Autumn leaves and a decaying tree trunk in the autumn.

Worn and Weathered autumn detail.

A bunch of red berries spotted on a walk late in the year.

A group of red berries.

Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge: Open Topic.

This is my contribution to Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge: Open Topic.

The open topic was rather well timed for me. I’m now getting out and about with a camera for the first time since my accident in late March but I’m having to use a cane (walking stick) and I have very restricted movement in the right shoulder.

This means using a small, light camera and lens. You can’t get much smaller and lighter than a CCTV lens adapted to to fit a small mirrorless camera. I went for a walk last Wednesday afternoon with a tiny 35mm f/1.7 CCTV lens attached to the camera. It was the first time I had used the lens and I was impressed enough to order a couple more CCTV lenses of different focal lengths and apertures. The lens produces some interesting out of focus areas in the backgrounds of some shots.

This Dandelion seed head was the second shot I took with the lens. I added some more blur to the background before adding a weak vignette, a frame and then did a monochrome conversion applying a digital blue filter to darken the background.

Dandelion seed head in monochrome.

 

Plastic Fantastic.

My contribution to the Cosmic Photo Challenge – Plastic Fantastic.

The challenge got me thinking about what plastics are used for nowadays. That got me thinking about my 12 year old Olympus E-410, a lightweight, plastic bodied DSLR. It was the base model when I purchased it in 2007 but I still use it. I decided to go with a selection of photos taken with it over the past 12 months.

The camera behind my decades old OM Zuiko 350mm on my home made ground pod.

Olympus E-410.

A young male Rose-breasted Grosbeak in the rain on the South Bruce Peninsula, Ontario, Canada. September in a 2019 birds calender. Taken with the OM Zuiko 350mm.

In the rain.

A fluorescent green kayak appears out of the fog on Lake Huron, Ontario, Canada. Taken with one of the plastic kit lenses that came with the E-410.

A splash of green.

Seed head in winter on the South Bruce Peninsula, Ontario, Canada.

Monochrome seed head.

Boulders around Dominion Lookout on the Lake Huron shoreline in Southampton, Ontario, Canada. Again taken with one of the plastic kit lenses that came with the camera.

Boulders on the Lake Huron shoreline.

Some early autumn colour on the South Bruce Peninsula, Ontario, Canada.

An early autumn leaf.

A raindrop in the rain. Another shot taken with the OM Zuiko 350mm.

A solitary raindrop.

 

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge – Delicate.

My contribution to the Lens-Artists Photo Challenge Delicate.

I had a few ideas for the challenge before deciding to go with a variety of images that I would describe as delicate in some way.  Two of the shots are from the 52 week photo project that I did last year while another dates back to 1987.

A young Ruby-throated Hummingbird in flight.

Ruby-throated Hummingbird juvenile.

The ghost of a Maple leaf on snow.

ghost Maple leaf.

An adult Eurasian Blue Tit feeding recently hatched young.

Feeding the young.

Detail of some Foxtail Barley seed heads.

Foxtail Barley seed heads.

Dandelion seed head.

Dandelion seed head.

Remains of a seed head in winter.

Simply a seed head.