Caroline Jensen: Blog en-us (C) Caroline Jensen (Caroline Jensen) Wed, 11 Apr 2018 22:09:00 GMT Wed, 11 Apr 2018 22:09:00 GMT Caroline Jensen: Blog 120 120 Five Reasons I Adore the Lensbaby Burnside 35  

The Lensbaby Burnside 35 revolutionized my photography! I am a 'moody' shooter. My search for light surrounded by darkness is ever present and so I was doubly intrigued by that magic gold lever on the Burnside. When I first received the lens, I was unsure how I would feel about it. It wasn't until I started shooting food and portraits that the brilliance of that little lever became apparent. For the first time, I could get the look I loved IN-CAMERA! I didn't have to bring my images into an editing program to isolate my subject by darkening the edges. I have never been a fan of a traditional vignette, which often seemed unnatural to me. I would tend to favor hand darkening the edges in a more organic fashion. The Burnside stunned me with its beautiful, yet soft, darkness around my subjects. Here are my favorite things about the Burnside:

1. The darkness around the edges is completely natural and customizable. The small lever on the lens allows me to dial in just the right amount of darkness. The transition between light and darkness is a soft gradation that looks as if it alway was present. Love it! 

2. The customizable vignette is perfect for controlling specular highlights and bright skies. I found that my exposures in tricky lighting situations were much easier to manage with the Burnside vs a regular 35mm lens. 

3. It is razor sharp! This lens astounded my with its ability to capture the smallest details clearly in my creative portraits.

4. Colors are rendered rich and deep with this lens. Lenses all vary in the way they render color. The Lensbaby Burnside 35 has gorgeous color rendition! 

5. It is a fantastic everyday lens. I love creative lenses, but sometimes, you can only carry one lens. This lens is absolutely perfect as that go-to lens! It is a classic focal length with both creative and practical advantages. It makes manual focus easy and efficient too!

I have been shooting a Project 52 with this lens. My love of portraiture and still life really marries well with this lens and I love shooting with it! Here are a few images from my project. Thank you for looking! 

Week One Burnside 52 LensbabyWeek One Burnside 52 Lensbaby Week Two Burnside 52 LensbabyWeek Two Burnside 52 Lensbaby Week Three Burnside 52 LensbabyWeek Three Burnside 52 Lensbaby Week Four Burnside 52 LensbabyWeek Four Burnside 52 Lensbaby Week Five Burnside 52 LensbabyWeek Five Burnside 52 Lensbaby Week Six Burnside 52 LensbabyWeek Six Burnside 52 Lensbaby Week Seven Burnside 52 LensbabyWeek Seven Burnside 52 Lensbaby Week Eight Burnside 52 LensbabyWeek Eight Burnside 52 Lensbaby Week Nine Burnside 52  LensbabyWeek Nine Burnside 52 Lensbaby

]]> (Caroline Jensen) #sonyalpha 35mm burnside lensbaby project52 seeinanewway sony westcottflex Wed, 11 Apr 2018 21:59:00 GMT
SONY A7rII + Lensbaby Edge 80

]]> (Caroline Jensen) Tue, 27 Jun 2017 02:45:35 GMT
Sea and Sky  

A quick trip up north let me get my fill of water and clouds. :) 



]]> (Caroline Jensen) # #rx1ii #sonyalpha RX1RII Sony Fri, 23 Jun 2017 22:33:20 GMT
My Girl

]]> (Caroline Jensen) #a7RII #sonyalpha Sony Fri, 23 Jun 2017 22:29:43 GMT
Moments of May and June  

Various Sony Cameras 

]]> (Caroline Jensen) #a7RII #sonyalpha Sony Fri, 23 Jun 2017 22:28:00 GMT
Light of Early Summer 2017  

Sony rx10III

]]> (Caroline Jensen) Fri, 09 Jun 2017 19:00:08 GMT
Therapeutic Art with The 'Crafty Camera' (Sony RX10III) Images may be purchased HERE

I really enjoy getting away and finding little stories in the country. For years, I have used my phone to spontaneously capture scenes that moved me, but the limitations of a phone have often been frustrating. The reach of the wide lens was poor, the quality was often very poor, and the file sizes were too small to really make large prints without a little bit of finessing in Photoshop. Last year I purchased the Sony RX10III. This camera is a bit bigger than a phone---I would put it in the small DSLR-size category, but the lens is fixed and zooms out to 600mm (35mm equivalent) with a wide end of 24mm equivalent.  This little camera has rocked my world! It is glued to my hip on every walk and sits next to me when I am a passenger in a car. I love that I can grab previously impossible shots with ease. It has quite literally opened up everything I see around me as a potential photo. 

This kind of work is very therapeutic to me. Spending time looking for beauty and joy is always beneficial and I feel so blessed to be able to really get in there and make art, even from a moving vehicle. The electronic shutter and EVF let me compose scenes in very bright scenes that I would have had to abandon otherwise. It is wonderful when your gear stays out of your way and lets you get the shot just as you see it. 

I call this camera my 'crafty camera' because it is perfect for composing my work in a myriad of ways. Being able to preview 24-600mm is a boon for artists wanting to collect images for compositing, get close to areas where you don't want to scare your subject (think zoo or out in nature), or grab candid shots of genuine interaction (like a wedding or party). It is the perfect camera for taking visual notes of the world as you walk through it. :) 

Here are a few samples:



]]> (Caroline Jensen) Tue, 06 Dec 2016 16:04:17 GMT
My Flower Field and Random Summertime Snaps Images all shot with Sony a7s II, Sony RX1 RII, Sony rx10III,  Lensbaby Twist 60, and Sony 90mm macro. Thank you for stopping by!


Sony a7rII and 90mm macro​

Sony a7rII and 90mm macro Sony rx10III Sony rx1rII Sony rx1rII Sony rx10III Sony a7sII and Lensbaby Twist 60 Sony rx1rII Sony rx1rII Sony rx1rII Sony a7rII and 90mm macro Sony a7sII and Lensbaby Twist 60 Lensbaby a7sII and Twist 60 Sony a7sII and Twist 60

]]> (Caroline Jensen) #a7RII #sonyalpha Sony rII rx1 seeinanewway Wed, 24 Aug 2016 20:19:55 GMT
Winner! Best in Category and Finalist in the VOICE Competition I was recently awarded with the Best in Category award for Beautiful Light in the VOICE Competition.  There were 35,000 entries and I am so pleased to have been chosen! 


Winner! Best in Category: Beautiful Light

I also was a finalist in the Composition and Design category:

This image was a finalist in the Composition and Design category.

]]> (Caroline Jensen) #a7RII #sonyalpha Clickinmoms G Master Sony VOICE click photo school Wed, 03 Aug 2016 15:09:54 GMT
Beautiful Rust and my new Sony RX1RII I was almost giddy when I saw this car last night. The sun was just setting and the rust looked just incredible. What a blessing to find such beauty tucked away in a lush green grove! These photos were taken with my new Sony RX1RII. This little camera is a small, almost point and shoot size camera, with the 'guts' of a full frame superpower with 42 mega pixels of sensor goodness, and a fixed (stellar!) 35mm  f2 Zeiss lens. It is incredible--the color, clarity, and 3D quality of the images have made me a very happy camper. 

There are many blogs that go into the nitty gritty of this gem of a camera, so I will simply add my reasons for choosing it. I love full frame files, glass that is wicked sharp with amazing color and contrast, and I have a bad back/neck so a tiny size matters. It REALLY matters. This is what I would call a 'winter coat pocket camera'. You aren't going to slip it into the front pocket of your jeans, but the average overcoat pocket would suffice. Maybe this sounds silly, but I am giddy about not having to carry a separate camera bag. You know how people say that time is money? Well, space is money too. I cannot tell you how many shots I have missed because dragging heavy gear around was just too much for me and I left the bag in the car. 

Note: The RX1RII has a fixed 35mm lens. If you are not a fan of this focal length, then you will not be happy with this camera. On the other hand, if you are like me and prefer that focal length, you will be happy as a clam. My favorite Canon lens was my 35L and the Sony 35mm 1.4 replaced it and became my favorite lens. I am a huge fan of environmental portraiture and intimate landscape photography. 

So are there any drawbacks? Well, a couple. The battery life is not awesome, but the off brand replacement batteries are very inexpensive. I think I bought 8 extra batteries for around $30. I like to have four juiced up and ready to go in my purse and four more charging. That way I am ready to go for even a long day of shooting. The other drawback is not really a drawback in my book. The camera is small, and I've heard a good bit of discussion about adding a grip. I have tiny hands and love the size as is. Also, I do wish it came with a lens hood, but that is easily remedied. :)

]]> (Caroline Jensen) #sonyalpha II Sony old cars rx1rII sony sonyrx1r Fri, 29 Jul 2016 20:16:06 GMT
Going Steady with the Sony rx10III Ok, I'll be honest. I bought the rx10III super zoom camera out of curiosity. I didn't need it. I heard about it's epic zoom and 4k video and thought that it would be a fun fling to experiment with. I never thought I would fall in love, ha!  You see, I am a very blessed girl with a lot of fun toys. I have the Sony a7sII, a7rII, a6300, and many high quality lenses. For most of my career I have considered myself a prime girl, with my 35mm 1.4 being my go-to lens. It was my I-only-can-take-one-lens-to-a-desert-island, lens. The only trouble is that philosophy rarely jived with my real life. Clients and sessions, yes, family?--not so much. My husband has the habit of poking me and telling me to--take a picture of that, ok? Um, sorry dear, my focal length is too short for that. Sorry, babe. Don't you have a zoom? he says. Yes, but only 200mm, I'm sorry, dear. And you call yourself a photographer. Sigh. 


When I heard of the rx10III, I sized it up as capable point and shoot, but not really something that would take precedence over my 'real' gear. That was until I actually started using it. I will admit that I had a bit of a bumpy learning curve. I love and live by BBF (back button focus)  with toggling, and I rarely use zooms, so I continually forgot to zoom the lens. I worried about the smaller sensor, and it took some tweaking to figure out how I liked best to focus. It turns out I love the Lock on AF: Flexible Spot Small and continuous auto focus. Yes, it was an adjustment, but when I also mapped in the Eye AF and Face Detection, things got MUCH easier. :) The focus hold button on the left side of the lens also turned out to be pretty cool too. 


At first, I used the camera for  a few minutes each day. I started taking little video clips to see what 4k video looked like. I will admit that all it took was a movie button in a natural location to make me interested. Shallow, but true. I never could get the flow with the little button on the side of the a7 series cameras. Then, I started to chase anything and everything with the zoom. I was clumsy, and I continuously got my fingers caught in the zoom as it went to sleep--my bad, and no harm done as it pops right back out, but it could only be better if it was an old fashioned zoom powered by a rotation of the wrist. I still do not have the hang of finessing the power zoom, but again, you are talking to a prime girl who rarely zoomed with anything but her feet. I'm a novice. Please, cut me some slack. :) 


The image quality has surprised me. Especially the straight out of the camera prints. I set my camera up to the Standard Creative Style, jpeg Extra Fine, and I tend to use Cloudy, Shade, or Custom white balance (I remapped white balance to the C2 button). Yes, I know I should shoot raw. I DO shoot raw normally. I even teach raw processing, but jpeg snaps put the fun back into photography for me and make shooting less work for off duty memory making. I also have a house full of teenagers who think my cameras are their cameras and my cards fill up fast with random selfies and cat pictures. The raw files are quite lovely, but the above recipe gets me by in my lazier moments. 


Manual exposure has been a bit of a challenge. I am used to dialing in my exposure and using manual focus lenses. I am not used to the exposure changing when I zoom, so it took a bit of time before I remembered that the variable aperture (even the small spread of 2.4 -4mm) was enough to require tweaking before taking the shot. I would prefer the constant aperture of the rx10II, but I would definitely miss the loooong zoom of the mark III. 


Here are a few random jpegs (and a few slight Lr edits) of this do-it-all wonder. Keep in mind that I have not done many shoots in raw and that I am only in my first few weeks with this camera. My final analysis is that I have unwittingly started going steady with this camera. I find myself grabbing it as I head out the door, in spite of my beautiful collection of amazing cameras and lenses. :) My other cameras will just have to take my infidelity in stride. 


This image would not have been possible without this lens length. I was on the road, hanging out the passenger window, and all the cows began to move away with my intrusion, even from many yards away. I tucked myself back in and then extended my lens all the way out. The cows remained interested, but less fearful, and started to resume their grazing. This tangle of cows is one example of why I grab this camera when I do not know what I will encounter. :) 

This bunny was so far away that my poor eyes could not even recognize it as a bunny. My husband's eagle eye let me know she was there and I took the shot, again with the lens racked out full length.   Is this not the funniest thing??? I just love how the chipmunk is taunting Mr. Tips with his cheeks full of apricot. This image would not have been possible without a very long lens! 

The following images are straight out of the camera.  







]]> (Caroline Jensen) Wed, 06 Jul 2016 05:17:23 GMT
Twist 60 Session I had about five minutes to play with the Twist 60 tonight, but I think it worked out very well. :) The lens is extremely sharp, even wide open, but I find it easier to hit a moving target at f5.6. 

]]> (Caroline Jensen) #sonyalpha seeinanewway twist60 Mon, 04 Jul 2016 05:37:23 GMT
Daily Videos for June Here are a few little videos from the first half of June, 2016. :) Here are a few little videos from the first half of June, 2016. :) Here are a few little videos from the first half of June, 2016. :) Here are a few little videos from the first half of June, 2016. :) Here are a few little videos from the first half of June, 2016. :)

]]> (Caroline Jensen) #sonyalpha Canon Dream Lens Sony a7sII dream lens rx10II seeinanewway sony Wed, 15 Jun 2016 19:45:53 GMT
Lindsey Sommer and Family

]]> (Caroline Jensen) Wed, 02 Mar 2016 16:45:40 GMT
Though the Lensbaby Blog Circle: February I had so much fun with Lensbaby cinemagraphs this month! They are a practice in patience, but so much fun. :) Please continue the circle with the lovely, Ana Rosenberg.

]]> (Caroline Jensen) Sat, 20 Feb 2016 12:00:00 GMT
Lensbaby Love Blog Circle: January 2016 I continued to play with my relatively new Sweet 50 this month. I really love it! Please continue the circle with my friend, Jessica! 


Here, I used it for some food photography--homemade sprouted bread and tea. :) ​​

Then, I turned my attention to teaching my daughter how to use it. She has done really well!   

]]> (Caroline Jensen) 50 blog circle lensbaby seeinanewway sweet Sun, 24 Jan 2016 06:00:00 GMT
Tristan by the Fire

]]> (Caroline Jensen) Thu, 21 Jan 2016 13:59:21 GMT
Our Daily Bread This bread is what we call our Daily Bread. It is fast enough to make on a whim and healthy enough to eat everyday. I sprout my grain, which we grow on our farm, but you can skip the first few steps and buy sprouted grain online. This bread is heavier, but it has a nice, chewy texture and is perfect with stews and as French toast or bread pudding. I make everything vegan, so stay tuned for leftovers recipes. :) 

These images were made with the Sony a7s II, 90mm macro, and 35mm 1.4. 


4 cups sprouted flour

2 cups water

2 teaspoons instant yeast

2 teaspoons kosher salt

2 tablespoons molasses

Mouse over the images to reveal the directions (skip the first two if you are using sprouted or regular flour).

Soaked GrainI soak the grain in water overnight to soften them and start the sprouting process. Notice how the grains are swollen and the ends are a little hairy.

Sprouted GrainThis is how the grain appears after it has been soaked and then kept slightly damp for two days. I rinse the grain periodically (about twice a day) to make sure they do not mold. They are sprouted in a large pot with a towel on top to keep out dust, pets, and children. :)

Grinding the GrainI use my twenty year old grain mill to grind the flour.

Sprouted FlourThe ground wheat is as fine as my machine will allow. It is still quite dense and could be sifted to produce a finer flour, but I never have done that.

Leveling the FlourI use a knife to level the flour. Weight is important in bread making, but I have yet to invest in a scale.

Add Molasses Instant YeastI use instant yeast that does not need to be activated in warm water. If you use regular yeast, simply warm your water and add the yeast to that ten minutes prior to making the recipe. Mix It!Add the water and mix together.

Shaggy DoughThe dough should be quite wet, but still hold its shape. Let rise until doubled in size. Divide into two parts and put into two 4x8 inch pans. Bake at 375 degrees for 40 minutes or until the loaves sound hollow when tapped.


]]> (Caroline Jensen) #sonyalpha 35mm 90mm Distagon FE Full-Frame G ILCE7SM2/B Macro Mirrorless OSS SEL35F14Z SEL90M28G Sony T ZA bread f/1.4 f/2.8-22 flour homemade sonya7SII sprouted Thu, 07 Jan 2016 22:27:41 GMT
Fall Turns to Winter

]]> (Caroline Jensen) baking cat children fall hoarfrost homeschool. snow winter Tue, 22 Dec 2015 18:06:14 GMT
Random December Images

]]> (Caroline Jensen) Mon, 14 Dec 2015 14:23:00 GMT