Leighton Phillips & Burnside 35

Leighton Phillips is a self-taught photographer from Cardiff, Wales. His focus is on landscape, nature and still life photography. He recently started shooting with Burnside 35 and has really found a groove with his striking, black and white captures. 

My interest in photography goes back many years to when I first used the Pentax MX Black film camera which belonged to my father. Ever since, my passion for photography has not wavered. I’m continually looking for ways I can become more creative with my captures, and this is where the Lensbaby Burnside 35 fits perfectly.

My approach to photography can be summed up by the words of the French philosopher Michel de Montaigne over 400 years ago: “In my opinion, the most ordinary things, the most common and familiar, if we could see them in their true light, would turn out to be the grandest miracles… and the most marvelous examples.”

I have been using the Burnside 35 since March this year. From the very beginning, it was my intention to use it to create images that I had not been able to create previously using my existing equipment. I expected the Burnside 35 to provide me with a more analog and natural feel to my digital images in a way that post-processing could not offer. It certainly achieved this and went beyond what I had envisioned, even after only a short period of experimenting with it. I was blown away with how tack sharp my initial images were.

After adjusting to using a manual focus lens again, the lens has become my default go-to lens. The addition of the second aperture control via the gold slider has given me the freedom that I had been looking for to finish off my creative process at the point of capture.

The Burnside 35 has enabled me to enhance the mood of my low key, black and white images of everyday objects/scenes (that would normally go unnoticed) by creating soft, darkened edges which effortlessly draw the reader’s eye to the isolated details within the image.

Even though I have only been using the Burnside for a few months, I’m addicted! The satisfaction it has given me when looking through my finished images shows that it has enabled me to become more artistic. A creative void in my work has been filled and a sense of excitement has been added to my journey.

The images that I now create as a photographer not only have to look good but feel right. The short focal length and narrow depth of field that the Burnside 35 provides is, for me, perfection!

To find out more about Leighton Phillips, check out his website and Instagram account.

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