I am a fully recovered film snob. 6 to 10 years ago if I could have found a t-shirt that said, “Friends don’t let friends shoot video” I would have worn it. But things change and I did too. Now I love my Canon 5D with all my heart even though it has some frustrating things you must deal with like audio. OK that said I love the idea of the Lensbaby system replacing the way I used to use Super 8 to add flavor to productions years ago. By the way, I am a full-time freelance nonfiction filmmaker. I am a bit old school at heart so I like to do stuff in camera if I can. I think the Lensbaby system is a fresh break from the ultra clean look of the Canon 5D, a way to rough-it up, or draw attention to different sides of the frame that are in the same focal plane. I feel the Lensbaby would be brilliant for music videos, art films, and experimental parts of non-fiction pieces. My favorite filmmaker Casey Neistat uses a Lensbaby from time to time and he rules. I saw some Lensbaby stuff in a rap video the other day that gave it a fresh slick feel. There is something to be said about having a tool that can really alter the image in a way that is pleasing to the eye and feels hip, different and intelligent. I think the Lensbaby system has a place in the camera bag of filmmakers that want to push the edge and as a documentary filmmaker want to have a creative treatment of reality. If work is play and you play at work this could be a fun tool for you. Here is quick clip of my use of the system, this is just the tip of the iceberg, there are many other applications that I think would work with Lensbaby–it is play time.
If you can’t see the video, please click here.