Minimalist Reflection of Tea Leaves and I'm Turning Japanese (I really think so)

Maybe it was the water that I just drank but I'm seeing Japanese.
I can still remember how I took this image.  It was a yellow drenched afternoon and the tea leaves were turning Japanese.  It felt like everything was at a stand-still.  I kept on rotating the camera until I got the right composition.  At that moment, I pressed the shutter. The sound of it reminded me of Jackie Chan's kung fu moves -- swift and crisp.  I was in love with my camera and the tea tree.

I shot this image using the Lensbaby.  This was back in 2008 when I started to take photography seriously.  I already had a digital SLR that I got around 2005 but I was only taking pictures of my daughter and our two cats.  What got me interested in shooting other things was when I discovered the Lensbaby.  It's a dopey little lens that can be manipulated to blur out a desired area anywhere in the frame.

With the Lensbaby, the camera had to be operated in manual mode.  It was all low tech, which I also love.  It taught me how to shoot without training wheels.  Back then, I bought the Lensbaby for around $60.  Nowadays, they go for almost $400.  I guess the folks at Lensbaby got greedy.

Yes, that lo-fi lens put the mojo on me to get serious into art photography.  One of these days I'll have to take the original Lensbaby out for a spin again.  In the meantime, here's an oldie that I hope you may enjoy.  Cheers.


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