The soothing power of freelensing

I have a very bad addiction to chocolate. I am not the only one. But, when I open a chocolate bar, I have a lot of trouble refraining from eating it all. I found out that if I buy a very dark chocolate (85% cocoa at least) it lasts a little bit longer, glad I found a way to trick myself! 

I have a second addiction, freelensing. This one is a bit more recent and luckily for me, I can let it run wild without any consequences on my sugar levels! 

Now, you might ask: WHAT IS FREELENSING?

Quite simply, this is a way to take a picture with some interesting effects and softness. The only thing you have to do is to detach your lens and hold it close to the lens mount of your camera body. This takes a little bit of practice as you now need to be able to access your settings and manually focus while holding your camera and your lens. But, it is worth it! 

Here are some pictures I took of my son while he was sleeping in his stroller:

There is something extremely soothing about freelensing. This is primarily because it adds a lot of softness to the picture. The balance between softness and sharpness is totally up to you.

Here are some pictures with a really 'soft' focus that I took last week in Park Slope, Brooklyn. 


I am by no mean an expert but I can share with you a few tips that I have learned so far:

- Prime lenses seem to work great with this technique. I used my 50mm for all the pictures above.

- You need to set your aperture before you detach your lens. Shutter speed and ISO can be changed after (although I try to adjust all my settings before I detach the lens).

- I found out that with a still subject, it is easier to move back and forth than to adjust the focus in camera. It is just a personal preference but I feel that moving in general helps me being more creative. This way, I can capture pictures from different angles. 

- You will see that by tilting your lens to the right, to the left, up or down, you will achieve different results and obtain different areas of focus. 

- I shoot Canon but I have heard that with Nikon cameras, you need to manually hold the aperture ring open.

- I would not recommend freelensing in adverse weather conditions as the inside of your camera is very fragile and could get damaged. 

Freelensing is a great way to let go and forget about all the rules! Who doesn't like, once in a while, to enjoy the freedom of doing things differently and get surprising results!