I got a new lens! I heard about Lensbabies on another photography blog that I follow, and I was immediately intrigues by the effect of the lenses. When you focus the lens, they keep a small circular area in focus surrounded by blur. When you shoot with a large aperture on a normal lens, the keeps a single plane in focus while blurring everything else out. That leaves a line of focus in your shot. Lensbabies leave a circle of focus.
While cheap as far as lenses go (current models go from $140-$300), I was able to find an obsolete model Lensbaby 2.0 (most closely resembles the current Muse) for $70 on Amazon. That sounded like a decent price for a toy lens to me!
Let me tell you, this lens is so fun and addicting to use. It uses a bellows to focus, so you press and push the lens around to set your focus point, hold your fingers steady and take the shot. Wanna see some shots?
In the shots of A, you can see how the area in focus is circular, while everything else around is softly blurred. I like!
The one drawback is that you have to use your eyes to focus. It doesn't autofocus (obviously) or focus indicate on my camera. A and I don't have the same eyesight, as you can tell from the shot he took of me. However, the blur of this lens is so soft, it actually looks artistic as opposed to crappy. I actually set that shot as the photo of me on Flickr. :-)