Just taking a one-post break from our recent holidays to share a new Christmas toy with any other photography folks out there. Kathryn was incredibly sweet and got me a fisheye lens for xmas, so here's a few test pictures from the very first day. The #1 reason anyone wants a fisheye lens is for photos that make your pets have really big eyes and noses, so here's a quick portrait of Kodiak, taken from about 1 inch away.
The other neat feature with fisheye lenses is the fact that they can see and capture 180 degrees and allow for some fun perspectives. This photo of a bridge in Stanley Park was taken from nearly underneath, but because of the warped and extreme perspective you can see the sky above it and the ground below it. This wouldn't work for every situation, but I think its a neat one here and in a handful of other situations.
The primary reason I wanted a fisheye was for taking spherical
panoramas. I have tried doing these with my regular lenses, but they
required 60+ photos to fit in all the perspective and were invariably
distorted in the end and a pain in the ass to stitch together. With the
wide angle of the fisheye I was able to capture the picture below with
only 8 pictures and with time can probably learn to trim that down to
less. This panorama is from the beach at English Bay infront of our
apartment and you can click it to see a larger version.