U of S | Mailing List Archive | alt-photo-process-l | Re: dreamy Nikon lenses

Re: dreamy Nikon lenses

Thank you all for the comments on varying the elements. I have
wondered if any lenses were made with doughnut shaped stops (open in
the center and around the edge) so as to have a sharp image and a soft
flaring image together.

Sam, I think I might have one of those Wollensak Extreme Wide Angle
lenses around. I'll look into it. Thanks,


On 7/21/08, sam wang <stwang@clemson.edu> wrote:
> Jack,
>  I agree with John that the best way is to enlarge the aperture: try that
> with any disposable plastic camera lens and you've got it.
>  What focal length and film format are you trying to use? Here is a solution
> for 4x5 and 5x7: the Wollensak Extreme Wide Angle 12.5 lenses intended for
> 4x5 and 8x10. Each can be found quite inexpensively. If you enlarge the
> aperture from 12.5 to about f/9 (as far as it can go) you'll get very
> beautiful soft focus. Every bit as nice as the best. Matter of fact, if you
> point the camera at say sunlight dancing on water, I bet you'll be
> mesmerized by the image on the groundglass.
>  Sam
>  On Jul 21, 2008, at 1:48 PM, Jack Brubaker wrote:
> > To the lens experts out there...
> >
> > I have a question about using an old lens as soft focus. Someone
> > mentioned that an old triplet could be made to give that soft halo
> > effect by moving the front element out a bit to introduce spherical
> > aberration. Do I remember that right? If so can this be done with some
> > of those old lenses I have laying around that have what I take to be a
> > front pair and a rear pair each mounted in a brass ring and threaded
> > into a brass tube. Can the space between the front and rear elements
> > be varied by screwing them out a bit and get any of these effects, or
> > by seperating the front pair and placing a shim between them in the
> > brass mounting ring?
> >
> > Hopeful and expectant,
> >
> > Jack
> >