So if you saw this image posted on the internet you'd probably assume that it's either a Lensbaby, smeared vaseline over a UV filter or a bit of Photoshop faffery or even now with LR5 some work with radial filters...well it's not.
This is shot with a standard 50mm f1.8...the difference being that the lens is not attached to the camera...that's right...removed and held in front of the gaping hole in the centre of your SLR. This image was shot at the Dig It festival in Manchester and at this point I found out just how tricky this technique is if you don't use a tripod and using the tripod free's up a hand to do the all important exposure work with the camera.
Now I've been working in Manual...setting the aperture at f2.8 ..here's a trick to keep your lens set at the aperture you want to use.
In the Nikon in your Set up menu if you scroll through you will have in your Set Up menu a Non CPU lens menu item, don't forget you are disconecting your lens so your camera has no idea what f stop your are using..... set up a variety of F stop settings in this menu. Now this only works if you have Nikon lenses that you can physically alter the f stop ring. So set the aperture on your lens..say F8 go into your non CPU lens menu and set F8 and all you have to do then is use the shutter speed and EV dial to get the exposure correct, Now there will be light leakedge which adds to how these images will look so compensating with your shutter speed, ISO and EV dial and leaving the chosen aperture alone. This really is where sitting your camera on a tripod comes in, you need one hand for holding the Lens and another for adjusting your camera settings..or an assistant or a 3rd hand....
Now you can go a bit more extreme with this and start using non standard lenses..I've used the 80mm off my Bronica S2a to great effect, just like above you can set the aperture and then use the non cpu lens menu and make sure your only variables are going to be shutter and maybe a bit of EV... give it a try.
What's all this then????
An unyeilding torrent of Photo babbel full of unconfirmed facts and manufactured photo drivel.. take from it what you like, it won't change the world but may leave you feeling nauseous...