Red & Yellow - NEX-5N & Kodak Enlarging Ektar 100mm f4.5. Click for larger.
I have not used enlarging lenses to take pictures for a little while, so I took out the little used Kodak 100mm f4.5 Enlarging Ektar lens and mounted it on the Vivitar 2X Macro Focusing Teleconverter modified helicoid, and gave it a go on my lunch break. Most older enlarging lenses have circular aperture, which gives a very nice round shape at any given aperture setting and this lens has it too.
Used this last time and I didn't have a good experience, but than I learned that nearly all enlarging lenses need to be properly shielded when used outside, sunny or not, or the pictures will come out all washed out/foggy with no contrast. You can make an easy lens shade by using black craft paper rolled to the size required, and tape it. Easy and effective. I used a piece of tubing from one of the lenses I took a part as a hood and it works very well. The hood was secured by the trusty electrical tape.
This lens is not very contrasty wide open, but is quite sharp, once proper shielding is used. Stop down a little and it improves quite a bit. I find that it creates very nice bokeh too. Very enjoyable lens to use.
As a side note, I found a little 50mm f4 enlarging lens with 4 aperture blades that gives a square aperture! I think it's a Schneider, but could be a Rodenstock. It's too small and won't fit the normal L39 thread. Need to find a way to mount it on the helicoid. I think it would be interesting to see what the bokeh would look like.
Magnolia -- NEX-5N & Kodak Enlarging Ektar 100mm f4.5.