Death of a Lens

August 12, 2010  •  Leave a Comment
It is a sad day.
The focus ring on my nikon macro has broken, rendering it unfocusable (i'm going to call that a word). This is not a minor loss. i have some thoughts.

This macro lens was my first REAL lens.  In other words, I spent some money on it, and it was mine alone, not meant for sharing really. I got it when I became inspired by photography and the little things in the world. If you focus on something small and at close range you give it a stage and opportunity to shine. It makes a big deal out of things that often go unnoticed, like a bug, a piece of dust, the veins on a flower's petal.  When I slow down and quiet down long enough to look around, I see the diverse and infinite beauty we're all surrounded by.  I try my best to capture it so other people can see what i see and feel what i feel when I'm with it.  That's my art and what makes me an artist.  This lens helped me get there . In a way, it taught me everything I know about photography.

As my first "real" lens, i used it to learn the basics.  I brought it to the beach, in the woods, up mountains, and even just around my house.  Its taken a beating, not intentionally of course, but that's how life goes.  It is a sturdy, well built, and remarkably tough machine. Since we became acquainted I've taken this lens on every vacation, on every wedding shoot, and every other professional or personal shoot of any importance and it has endured it all.  It's helped me make some beautiful images, some of which have been showcased in galleries, and even some that are hanging in the houses of strangers. When our daughter was born, the workload for the lens increased drastically, and with it, I captured all the precious wrinkles of her newborn feet, tiny tooth eruptions, and when the first little tufts of hair began the formation of a curl. I am so grateful to this lens for helping me once again slow down, to preserve these incredibly special moments as they fly by.

My husband and I discussed seeing if someone could fix it...  Instead though, we figured that we need to just let it go. Besides the fact that I think it's beyond repair,  it did not meet its end due to dainty plastic pieces and poor construction.  It has been a workhorse, and has earned its right to retire.

Of course it will be replaced. It has to. And soon. It will not be forgotten. And it will not thrown out. I thought I'd recycle it in some way...maybe turn it into a pencil holder or a vase... anyone else have any ideas?  let me know.

A few stats:

bought: 2005 in Iowa (weird, I know)
cameras used: Nikons: D50, D80, D200, D300, N70
weddings: about 50
galleries/shows: 7
art prints sold: 3
estimated pictures taken: 50,000 (??)
estimated lens caps: 7 =)
So this is from the last time I used it (yesterday).  I was fiddling around with long exposures when I saw one of those bright green cut worms (?) seemingly suspended in air.  It was climbing something link a strand from a spider web and doing so quite frantically, heading upwards.  I think the pictures came out pretty cool... although not the way i planned for my partner to go out...but isn't that how it always goes. =)

So its a bit of a sad day.  But its also a day full of appreciation and great memories.

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