Fisheye Drain



The Ross Bay storm drain was an obvious place to stop by while testing a new-to-me lens.

In this case it is a screw mount Fish-Eye-Takumar 17mm/f4, dating between 1967 and 1972.

I always was intrigued by fish eye lenses and the distortion they bring.

What attracted me to this one is that it is really quite small, covers the full frame without a circle, has built-in yellow and orange filters and I doubted I would ever see another for sale locally.

So, this is the from the first roll through the lens.

The fish-eye distortion is pronounced, but I like that.

It is sharp and quite contrasty. It does under expose by at least one or 1.5 stop, so that will need to be remembered.

This is probably going to become a travel lens to substitute for the too-bulky Canon 16-35/2.8.

EDIT: I hit publish instead of save, so you get a bonus image today, and I will prepare something for Saturday. Sigh




Canon Elan 7N, Takumar Fish-eye 17/4, Ilford XP2.



8 thoughts on “Fisheye Drain

    • Thanks Jim! Glad you appreciate why I wasn’t able to resist. When will I see one again?
      The crunchy pebble beach is very nice – I think it is partly from being under exposed and possibly the orange filter (it has built in orange, yellow and UV filters, normally I don’t bother with filters, but if all I have to do is turn a ring on the lens, then that is somehow different.) Another reason is the low res commercial scan which has made everything kind of blocky.


    • Thank you Ken. I agree, far more than a toy. I have just spent an hour or so dust spotting these negatives (not that I have finished yet!) and so have been having a close look at the images, and in the corners and so on. It does a very good job, is really sharp even in the corners and is quite an interesting lens for architecture much of which can stand, or even welcomes, some distortion. This lens will get quite a lot of use I think, especially because I have a soft spot for wide angle. I hope you find your fisheye!


    • Hi Val, I have to disagree with your basic premise. While I would not use a fisheye lens to record a stratigraphic profile in an archaeological site, I have worked on sites where photography was not considered good enough and artists were set to record the profiles, in colour, with watercolour paints. And for good reason as they could record the colour more accurately and subtly than a photograph. So, artists can make accurate representations, and photographers can distort. In fact, photography, because it seems to be accurate, can more readily tell lies than can a painting which is assumed to include artistic impression and license in the way a photograph usually is not, but often should be.


      • While I follow your, er, rather jesuitical reasoning Ehpem, I have to say that for many of us out here, the storm drain is too special an object to take any such liberties with

        Liked by 1 person

      • The storm drain IS very special, so we can agree on that.

        By Val’s reasoning I also take liberties when I use a standard lens that has the same field of view as the human eye without distortion (not counting my astigmatism plagued eyesight) and is very sharp (sharper than my own vision) to make a long exposure which distorts reality by turning the water into a creamy foam that we never see in real time.

        Something like this one is really an unacceptable version of what we see when we go there in a storm:


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