Glassy Eyes

Dear J-

The more I shoot with my current setup (Olympus E-1 with vintage lenses) the more I’m tempted to acquire more glass, even though I swore off more acquisitions only a month ago, and this even despite already owning multiple lenses in those same focal lengths.  What I’d be smart to do is set money aside for some actual Olympus lenses instead of making do with the motley crew of lenses I currently rotate.

For example, Olympus makes a 50 f/2 macro lens for the 4/3rds system; that lens is fast, compact, autofocus, and a 1:2 macro lens to boot, so why would I even consider instead spending a fraction of its purchase price on something like a Summicron-R 50 f/2?  I will say that there’s something seductive in the way the Leitz lenses feel:  well-damped, solid, and with an impressively long focus throw.  Here’s where my limitations come into play, though; anything less than 50mm or so of actual focal length and I can’t honestly say that I’m focussing accurately.  Besides, giving up on manual focus and aperture rings would mean that one-handed operation would be a bit more feasible; considering that for most photographic opportunities I find myself juggling baby, dogs, and camera, a free hand would be greatly appreciated.

I’d also like to be able to regain wide-angle photography without having to resort to pulling out some of my exotic lenses; the full-frame 16mm Fisheye-Nikkor works surprisingly well with minimal distortion, but what I’ll probably save my pennies for is either the 11~22 zoom or the 8mm fisheye, along with the 50mm macro.  The 14~54 has had great reviews, but considering my recent usage of that focal length range (on the LC1, I’d usually rack the zoom out to full-wide or full-tele, 28 or 90, and be perfectly happy with those results).  I don’t generally find myself limited when shooting with single focal lengths, although that may be a by-product of the lenses I’ve owned.  Now if Olympus would just lower the price on that 7~14 …

Mike

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3 Responses to “Glassy Eyes”

  1. Junior Says:

    Wow, sometimes I think we travel in parallel universes!

    I too struggle with variety, nutritious value and quantity of portion when it comes to dietary matters (as photographic evidence may well have already made plain to you). Generally, I eat lunch at a coffee shop across the street from work; the food there (though straightforward – sandwiches, soups, salads) is very good and usually of reasonably decent nutritional value. It’s when I get turned loose in exceptional surroundings that I follow completely reliable and predictable patterns.

    Every year, I go for work-related training to a “summer school” for one week, at the University of Western Ontario; although meals are available in the residence cafeteria in the building where I stay, I invariably find myself drifting over to the Subway across the street – sometimes for every meal in the week – and enjoying (almost invariably) the aforementioned Cold Cut Combo, complete with Doritos – with a copy of the local paper spread out on the table in front of me.

    Just yesterday, I had to go to Toronto for the day. At lunch, I succumbed to temptation and popped into the Mickey D’s across the street from where I was. A newspaper, a Mac and fries (biggie size) and a few minutes to myself – I know it’s bad for me from a dietary perspective, but I absolutely love spending lunch in this way…

  2. Junior Says:

    Oops. That was supposed to be in the previous post. My bad. Got distracted by visions of french fries dancing in my head.

  3. dearJ Says:

    When I had a week’s worth of training in Rosemead, where our home office is, every single dinner was, without exception, at Jack in the Box: two cheeseburgers, fries, and a Coke. Consistency, I am thy lapdog.

    Part of the reason I’m looking forward to jury service is the number of fast food restaurants in downtown San Diego. I know, there’s plenty of better choices, but damnit, the civic duty I perform demands equally heroic sacrifices on the part of my arteries.

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