Busy Fun Font Times!

Boy howdy, have I been busy! Just … y’know, not here.

I’ve been blogging up a storm over at the Font Bundles blog. If you’re interested in design and fonts, here are some hot posts:

Manly Fonts for Dudes
Applying Distressed Text Effects to Your Fonts (in Photoshop)
Basic Color Theory
Let’s Take a Look at Some Logo Layouts and Font Choices (this one gets pretty snarky)
Deep Dive: Tracing and the Monogram It App

That’s just a selection of some of the vast numbers of words I’ve been churning out on the topic of fonts and font-related stuff.

I’ve also created a ton of new fonts since last we spoke! I’ll save you the individual lists, but here are some feature images:

Newish fonts

You can check ’em all out over at the MissyMeyer.com site! It’s where I put all portfolio-style stuff and things for sale. (And all of my freebies are over there as well!)

I’m also moving shop to a new Facebook business page — my old one was forever borked when I changed it over from Holiday Doodles to Missy Meyer, so I’m going to start fresh with one that’s purpose-built for my design, fonts, illustration, and other creative works. So go give that sucker a “like” if you’re so inclined!

Ask a Font Creator: Yes, I even obsess about fonts on vacation.

00-vacation-header

We just recently took a short vacation to Las Vegas. It’s cheap and close to get to, and we hadn’t been there in around 15 years. But of course, I can’t just turn off the fonty part of my brain, so I was looking at typography the whole time. It doesn’t help that there is typography all over that whole town.

I’ve shared some of my thoughts about the good, the bad, and the ugly fonts and typography treatments I saw over at this week’s FontBundles blog post.

Read “Ask a Font Creator: Do You Ever Stop Thinking About Fonts?” over at the FontBundles blog!

Ask a Font Creator: Copyrights & Trademarks

Ask a Font Creator: Copyrights & Trademarks

There’s a lot of confusion and weirdness when it comes to copyrights and trademarks. Are fonts copyrighted? Can I make a logo with a font and then trademark it? What quotes are OK to use on merchandise I want to sell?

I tackle all of those things and more over at FontBundles in my blog post about copyrights and trademarks, with the information (as usual) geared toward the designers, crafters, and others who are heavy users of fonts.

Check out “Ask a Font Creator: Copyrights & Trademarks” over at the FontBundles blog!

Ask a Font Creator: How Do I Pair Fonts?

Ask a font creator: how do I pair fonts?

Ah, pairing fonts. Sometimes it feels almost impossible to put two fonts together and have them look just right, especially if one of them is something fancy or goofy or weird.

In this post over at FontBundles, I cover the basics of what makes a good pair, some of the classic pairings, and then a number of examples of script fonts in pairings (since most pairing advice out there seems to concentrate on finding a good serif to go with a good sans-serif).

Read “Ask a Font Creator: How Do I Pair Fonts?” over at FontBundles!

Ask a Font Creator: Catching up on Vocabulary

Ask a font creator: vocabulary #1

As part of my “Ask a Font Creator” series over at the FontBundles blog, I did two parts on the vocabulary of type (and could have gone on for MUCH longer).

The first post deals with some basics, as well as categories and styles of fonts. So if someone asks for your favorite sans-serif font, you’ll know what they’re talking about. And if you’re looking for a font that looks a specific way, the list of styles can help you improve your Google-fu.

The second post gets into two different topics: the anatomy of letters themselves, and the fabulous features that designers can include in their fonts when creating OpenType fonts. Did you know there are over 100 different features that a font creator can code into a font? I go over a few of the most popular and frequently-seen in this post.

Read “Ask a Font Creator: Vocabulary #1: Categories & Styles” on FontBundles!

Read “Ask a Font Creator: Vocabulary #2: Letter Anatomy & OpenType Features” on FontBundles!

New blog series: Ask a Font Creator

Ask a font creator: what's your process?

I’ve been invited by the folks at FontBundles to write a weekly blog, and they’re leaving the content pretty much up to me, as long as it’s somewhat related to fonts and/or design.

I’ve decided to call the series “Ask a Font Creator,” and I’ve been tackling questions or issues I see come up in the font community.

The first post answers a question that several people asked, which is, “What’s your process for creating fonts?” I’d done a post a while back on how to use three free pieces of software to create a font, but none of those three are things I use on a regular basis. So I wrote up how I go about creating a font from beginning to end, so you can see where I’m coming from. 😀

Read “Ask a Font Creator: What’s Your Process” over at FontBundles!

Tutorial: Creating a Mist Look in the Procreate App

procreate tutorial: mist effect

Hello again! Back with another effect tutorial for the Procreate app in iOS. I’m calling this one “spooky,” since Halloween is just around the corner, but I guess it doesn’t have to be — you could draw a silhouette of a superstar singer, or a fabulous something/someone else, and have the lights and mist pouring around them.

Anyhoo, my place is not to judge what you use this mist effect for. Let’s learn how to do it!

1 - grid, sketching, pink bar

I’m creating this one on the 4×6 size in Procreate; measurements and percentages may be different depending on what size canvas you choose.

My first two layers for anything, you may have figured out by now, are a grid (the grid brush is in the “Textures” group) and a rough pencil sketch. I’ve also created a third layer with a big pink rectangle. I’m going to use this for two things: [1] as a baseline that my text will sit on as I write it, and [2] as a shape I can use in order to mask off the top half or bottom half of my canvas. I’m going to call this the “pink box layer” (though you’re welcome to make this box any color you like).

(How did I make a nice rectangle? I created a custom brush using the square shape and solid fill that are already in Procreate’s library of shapes and grains. One tap gets you a square; then just resize it to fill the bottom half of the canvas.)

2 - write your word

Next up, write out your word. Brush width/pressure settings are up to you. Here I’ve used the “Minimalist” brush from halfapx.com. It’s a nice heavy, solid line, with just a little bit of pressure sensitivity.

When you write, make sure that anything that touches the baseline crosses over it just a little bit. And keep everything relatively close to the baseline — no big swoopy descenders on this one. Here’s a close-up of my overlaps:

overlapping the baseline

Duplicate your text layer, and tuck a copy away. I always recommend stashing a backup copy, in case you (and by you, I mean I) mess up and need to start over.

Now we’re going to use our handy pink box layer to chop off the very bottoms of those letters. Pull down your layers, select the one with the pink box on it, and tap on the image thumbnail. Choose Select Contents from the layer menu. This is going to mask off the top half of the canvas, so anything that you now do will only show up on that bottom half where the pink box is.

Select the layer with your text in it. Tap on the image thumbnail to get the layer menu to pop up, and select Clear.

Cropped little bottoms

This should have shaved off the very bottoms of your letters, so that they now sit totally flat along the top edge of your pink box.

That text layer is now done!

Duplicate the layer, then flip your duplicate layer over. (Choose the arrow icon in the upper-left of your screen, then the Flip Vertically icon along the bottom [an upward-pointing arrow underneath a three-sided squarey thing, like an arrow wearing a hat].)

duplicate and flip

Move your flipped duplicate down so it’s juuuuuust overlapping the top text. You may need to nudge it up a tiny bit — just so you can’t see any of the background color between the two.

Make a copy of that flipped layer, and tuck it away. Because YOU NEVER KNOW.

Now we’re going to distort the upside-down layer:

distort bottom text layer

I’ve gone all full-screen so you can see what I’m doing here. Select the entire flipped text layer (arrow icon, upper-left). Then tap and hold each of the little circles at the bottom corners. After holding for a moment, you’ll go into Distort mode, and you can pull that circle wherever you want.

If you want to be really, really precise, you can use the gray grid background behind your document and count the exact number of squares to the left and right, so everything’s totally even. I just eyeballed it here. Left or right can be off a little bit, but for your first try at this, I recommend keeping the bottom parallel to your canvas. (If you don’t, your flipped shadow-letters may not match up right with the upright letters.)

Now we’re going to do some duplicating and blurring. You’ll want three copies of this flipped and distorted shadow layer: one regular, one with 25% gaussian blur, and one with 50% gaussian blur. (And you’ll want to mask off the top half of the canvas when applying that blur. Go to your pink box layer, choose Select Contents, and you’re good to go — all masked off.

We’re going to do some erasing of the two blurred layers:

25 percent gaussian blur

Set your eraser to a nice, big, soft airbrush, and nibble away at the very top of the 25% blurred layer. Don’t erase more than, say, a quarter of the way down.

50 percent gaussian blur

Now do the same erasing to the 50% blurred layer, but erase farther down — like halfway.

When the three layers are on top of each other, they now have a kind of gradient blur: sharper where the shadows meet the letters, growing to fuzzy at the very bottom of your canvas.

(If you’re doing this effect on one single, solitary object, you may be able to use the Perspective Blur instead, placing your crosshairs directly on the line where the upright text and shadow meet, and aiming the perspective arrow downward. For a longer item like this, however, Perspective Blur looks great right in the middle, but really borks up the shadows to the left and right.)

combined upright and shadows

So here’s our combined text, with the upright letters and the three layers of shadows.

Time for mist!

First, you’ll need a black background. Either color the Background layer black, or just put in a new layer below all of your other layers and fill it with black.

Now, we’re going to mask off the bottom half of the canvas, and start with the mist on the top half. Go back to your pink box layer and Select Contents. Then invert the selection. (Long press on the “S” icon in the upper left of your screen, until a menu appears along the bottom. Tap on the thing that looks kind of like a plus sign made up of two V-shapes.) Now the only area where you can actively draw is the top half of the canvas.

top half - white mist

You could use a number of brushes for the mist, but I prefer the Nebula brush (in the Luminance brush group). But you could try the Cotton brush (Organic group) or the Clouds brush (Elements group) or even Wet Sponge (Water group) if you like the looks they give you.

I started with a heavy, solid white along the bottoms of the letters, because my light source is low. For the upper parts where it starts to get wispy, play around with the size and opacity of your brush. I did more large billowy-cloud on the right, but more thin tendril-ish on the left.

top color mist layer

You could leave this as all white, but you could also add some colors. Now I’m not going to stop you if you want to do a rainbow effect here, but for your first attempt, I’d recommend keeping it to two or three colors, just to get the feel of it. I went with pink on the left, purple on the right. You can overlap the white in some places, and have the color mist over just black in others — it all adds to the depth.

(I probably don’t need to mention, since you know I’m a layer fiend — I did one layer for the white, and a separate layer for the pink/purple. You don’t need to be as layer-happy as I am here; it can all go on one layer. Up to you.)

bottom white reflection layer

Now let’s move on to the bottom half. Invert your masked area again (press on the upper-left S icon until the bottom menu appears, then pick the plus-looking thingy) so that the top half is excluded, and we’re just working on the bottom half.

Now, again, you have brush options here. I opted for a big soft airbrush — I didn’t want the sharp details of the Nebula brush on this part; more a soft reflection, like the letters are sitting on ice or something. If you want the sharper details, though, you can totes do that. Nebula, Cloud, Cotton, play around with the brushes and pick which one you like the best.

I tried to mirror the patterns I’d established on the top half — super bright where the letters meet, fading out as you move away.

bottom color mist layer

And then mirroring the use of color as well.

(It occurs to me just now that I might have been able to duplicate the top mist layers, flip them vertically, then apply some gaussian blur or something to them. But that would have robbed me of more drawing, so I’m cool with the way I did it. If you’d rather flip and blur, I won’t judge!)

top and bottom mist together

Clear your mask away (click on the arrow icon, upper-left) and check out the whole thing together. If you like, you can call it done!

I, however, don’t like that I can see the line between top and bottom so clearly. So I’m going to add some more mist (on its own layer) to blend the top and bottom halves a little more. And I’ll do some tendrils of mist in both the top and bottom halves, to give the appearance of the mist pouring out around the outside of the letters, along the “ice” surface of the bottom half.

a layer of misty tendrils

Here’s that layer all by itself, so you can get a feel for what I did here.

And now, I truly am going to call it done. Here’s the final product:

final mist effect

So there you have it, a backlit misty look. Good for 1,001 spooky or non-spooky uses! Please tag me on Instagram (@geekmissy) if you try this out, or feel free to leave a comment here. And let me know if you have a text effect in mind you’d like me to try recreating in Procreate!

More fonts, now available at FontBundles!

As previously noted, I’ve been making more fonts. Here are a couple of fresh ones!

I have a portfolio of all of these fonts over at Behance, but they’re also being picked up by a few sites that specialize in providing fonts, or graphic design elements, or both. One of my favorites is FontBundles.net — they have great bundles of really nice fonts to buy, and enough great individual fonts that a fontaholic could go broke, but they also do a free premium font every week! They’re carrying my most recent five fonts as freebies — the hero images of both fonts below are linked to those fonts over at FontBundles.

They also run a really good Facebook community, where I get to do one of my favorite things in the world: be a little helper. People frequently post pictures of things (sometimes really weird things), and ask what font is being used. I get to channel my inner Sherlock, which is a load of fun.

Hot Deals - grocery-style font

This one was inspired by a trip to Trader Joe’s. I was marveling at all of the hand-made price signs under every product (and did you know that each Trader Joe’s location has at least one. and frequently more than one, full-time sign artist?

For Hot Deals, I used an area I hadn’t before: the Private Use Area. Which sounds kind of spooky or intimidating, but it’s really just a set of characters in a font that aren’t specifically mapped to letters or numbers or punctuation or anything. The Private Use Area is just a bunch of empty boxes, waiting for you to fill it with whatever weird new letters or icons or words you want to put in there.

Hot Deals - PUA glyphs detail

These are the extra items in the PUA section of Hot Deals, shown below the capital letters. Handy little doodads, so you don’t have to go to the trouble to create your own!

In my most recent font, Ludicrous, I used the PUA for another kind of extra: ligatures.

Ludicrous - handwriting font

Ligatures are when two letters connect to each other. In a lot of regular fonts, the lowercase F and I will be a standard ligature, because the droopy front part of the F encroaches on the space where the dot over the I lives. So they’ll be combined into one character, and it looks a lot cleaner. There’s a little bit of code embedded in the font that tells the program you’re using: “If letter X is immediately followed by letter Y, replace them both with character XY.”

Ludicrous didn’t have a problem with “fi,” because the terminal on the lowercase F doesn’t go down very far, so it doesn’t get all up in the lowercase I’s face. But one thing that can drive me nuts about a font, especially one that’s supposed to look breezily handwritten, is when you have two of the same letter next to each other. They look identical, which spoils the feeling that it’s been written by hand! So I created most of the common double-letter combinations as ligatures:

Ludicrous - ligatures and extra glyphs

That way, any double-lettered word you type will have those double letters automatically replaced with the new ligature characters, and the handwritten feel will live on! Also, as you can see, I also did a few non-letter characters and put them in the PUA. Because sometimes you want a little heart or star or swash in what you’re doing, and it’d be really handy to have ones made by the same hand, with the same brush.

Here are those double-letter ligatures in actual words:

Ludicrous - double letter ligatures

(And yes, I firmly believe that ass pizza errors would make a wookiee giggle.)

If you like them, go get them! These fonts (and all of my other fonts) are free for personal and commercial use, so you can put them on whatever you like. And if you have a suggestion for a text style you’d love to see in a font, let me know!

The day after Disney, I dyed my hair pink.

I’ve been looking forward to this for months. I have only colored my hair a couple of times since starting with the mouse over eight years ago, and even then it had to be a natural-looking color. I missed the crazy shades! I mostly used to do reds and oranges, or just bleached blonde, and thought about those colors this time around. But I finally decided that I’d do a color I’ve never done before: pink.

To start with, here’s a before picture:

before - dark hair

With extra bonus helper sink cat!

On the 10-scale of hair color, black is a 1 and lightest blonde is a 10 (there’s a color chart later in this post). My natural color falls right around a 2, even though it looks mostly black in this picture. (I took most pictures in the spare bathroom, because it has a nice plain white door right behind the mirror. The lighting in there isn’t 100% awesome, but I adjusted as well as I could.)

I washed my hair the night before, so it was free of products but also had some time to build up a little bit of scalp grease. Ew, that sounds gross. But seriously, don’t color freshly-washed hair; you need a little oil on your head to protect your tender head skin from the chemicals.

Behold, my supplies:

pink hair coloring supplies

I browsed the Sally Beauty Supply aisles thoroughly, torn between the Manic Panic and other brands. I ended up going with Ion, a brand I’ve used before (though for more “normal” colors) and liked. All of the unnatural colors are “semi-permanent,” so it’ll be interesting to see how long the color sticks around before I need to freshen it up.

With hair as dark as mine, it needs to be lightened significantly before it can take any really good color. So it was a two-step process: bleach, then color the lighter hair. I got a blue-based lightener, because my hair tends to go really orange and brassy when it gets lighter, and the blue is supposed to counteract that.

And yes, it’s really, actually blue.

blue bleach

Mix the blue powder with cream developer (I went with a 20-volume, recommended by the lightener packaging for when you’re working right at the roots) until it’s the consistency of pancake batter, then brush it on all over. I had Scott assist briefly, to make sure I got the small hairs on the back of my neck, and didn’t have any big drips or smudges on my skin.

The lightener packet recommended 30-50 minutes, depending on how light you want to go, and how tortured/thick/stubborn your hair already is. My hair was virgin and uncolored, so I was comfortable going with 50 minutes to get it as light as possible. The goal was to take me from a level 2 up to a level 7/8.

hair color chart

According to the packaging of the pink color I chose, I didn’t need to shoot for a level 10 to get good results; it recommended a 7.

So, after 50 minutes, I rinsed out the bleach and ended up with the following:

middle phase: bleached hair

Yeah, it’s still a little on the orange side, but not much. There’s only so much that the blue goo can do. If I’d gone for a non-colored lightener, it would have been WAY orangier, believe me. Been there, done that. Spell check is telling me that “orangier” isn’t a word, but I’m rolling with it.

Also, if you compare to the chart, it’s definitely lighter than a 7. I’m lucky, in that my hair is pretty dark, but it always bleaches out really well. Maybe it’s because I was blonde as a child, who knows?

Every time I bleach my hair, I’m tempted to stop there. It’s a kind of cool color. I could get a toner and use it, which would take out more of the gold tones and put it more toward platinum. Hmm, maybe in the future. For now, it was project pink all the way.

I let my bleached hair dry thoroughly before putting on the magenta dye. Some recommend waiting a couple of days between bleaching and coloring, while others insist it should be done right away, while the hair follicle is wide open. I figure, if they do it right away in the salon, and I’m using salon-quality supplies, I’d be just fine coloring immediately.

On with the pink sludge!

all pink sludged up

The instructions that came with the color said to leave it on for 20-40 minutes. However, a lot of the young people with their YouTube how-to videos appear to leave their color on for 2 or more hours. Since the color is just pure color (as opposed to store-bought boxes of hair color, where you mix a developer in with the color), you could leave it on overnight if you wanted to, and you’d be perfectly OK (well, you’d have a hell of a messy pillowcase to clean, but other than that, OK).

I rinsed after 40 minutes. And yeah, when I refresh the color, I’ll definitely leave it in for longer, because it’s way lighter than I expected it to be — more of a candy pink than a deep magenta.

I took some shots in the spare bathroom, but the color was hard to get right. Here’s the best representation, in natural light by a window:

the final pink hair

And even though it isn’t the color I thought it would be, I really dig it! It’s definitely not Disney-appropriate, which is a great reminder every time I look in the mirror that I don’t have to go in to work next week.

A couple of notes:

If you’re going to put a crazy color on your hair, rub some petroleum jelly on your skin along the hairline first. Because these colors stain like crazy! Here you can really see along my hairline where my skin had Vaseline on it, and where it ended and the color got on my scalp:

color stains the scalp meat!

(You can also see that my accuracy along the hairline was not all that great. There are also spots on top of my head where I missed the roots by a quarter-inch, and some areas that barely got the pink dye. These are all because of doing it with my own two hands, and not being able to see parts of my head directly. It’s hard when you’re using a hand-held mirror to look at the reflection of the back of your own head in the bathroom mirror, y’know?)

Anyhoo, the scalp line is no biggie, since I wear my hair over my forehead, and the stains will wash away after the first couple of shampooings. (I even got a color-protective shampoo, to replace the bar soap I usually wash my hair with. Yes, I wash my hair with bar soap. My hair is baby-fine, and just lays there limply in the Florida humidity unless I torture it a little bit.)

These color dyes are really thick. You can thin them out with some hair conditioner, but whatever you do, DO NOT thin them out with the developer solution you used with the lightener. Bad mojo there. You can also thin out the dye with a lot of conditioner, to get more of a pastel look.

Use non-metal bowls. I like to go with glass — easy to see that you’ve mixed everything up from the bottom, easy to clean, and non-reactive with the chemicals you’re using. And don’t wear anything too precious, because you WILL get bleach on it.

I plan on accompanying this color with an undercut, which I’ll probably do today or tomorrow. Not sure if I’ll end up with 1/4 inch or 1/2 inch on the sides — I’ll start out with the longer and see how I feel, then go shorter if the mood strikes. I kind of can’t wait for the roots to start growing out — nearly-black on the sides and pink on top will probably look really cool.

When refreshing the color, I may try Manic Panic or Special Effects or one of the other big brands, to see if I like them better. Anyone out there have a favorite brand?

Tiny lenses … for my phone

(Title sung to the tune of “Tiny Bubbles,” which is totally stuck in my head right now.)

So while reading an article on BoingBoing the the other day, I experienced that thing where you go from not knowing an item exists to wanting it desperately, all in a span of 30 seconds. The item in question: a set of tiny clip-on lenses for your cell phone.

Tiny lens clipped onto my phone

Immediately, I dashed over to Amazon. The author of the BoingBoing piece had ordered his set for about three bucks, but they took a month to arrive from China. Since we’re moving in a little over a month, and I felt the need for immediate gratification, I spent twice as much and bought a six dollar set with Prime shipping.

(Here is the set I bought; looks like they aren’t available on Prime anymore. But if you search for “clip on cell phone lenses,” there are a gajillion choices available, some Prime.)

Tiny cell phone clip-on lens set

The set comes with three lens options: fish eye, macro, and wide angle. And it’s a little confusing at first, because in order to use the wide angle feature, you have to have the macro and wide angle lenses attached to each other. Somehow they work together to create magic. Many reviews on many different options on Amazon have complaints that people only received two lenses, but they didn’t realize that two of the three arrive attached as a unit.

They even include little lens caps (although the back side is still open to the elements) and a carrying bag (which I had to re-sew along the bottom, as the stitching wasn’t that great).

So, onward to testing! Above, you can see the fish eye lens attached to my phone. Apparently, you can put these on over a case, but I put them straight onto my phone (yes, my phone itself is that strange orange color). The hardest part is getting them centered over your camera’s lens, but you can put just the clip part on by itself, center it, then screw on the tiny lens you want to use.

Macro shot of fish-eye lens

First, let’s talk about the macro lens. At first, I thought it wasn’t working right, but I figured out that you have to get REALLY close to things. If it’s blurry, you’re still too far away. You gotta get right up in your subject’s grill.

Closer.

CLOSER.

macro lens: shift key

THIS CLOSE.

Seriously, you gotta get close. It’s almost like a tiny microscope that clips onto your phone. I took a picture of the wrinkly old-lady skin on the back of my hand, but I’ll save you all from that. I don’t even want to see it, so I can’t imagine you’d want to.

Here’s where I move on to the wide-angle lens, and tell you that I don’t really have any good shots with it.

Cheddar in the wide-angle lens

Of course, this is a good shot, because it’s of a sweet baby kitty. But generally speaking, it doesn’t seem like using the wide angle lens is all that different from taking regular pictures. Maybe my phone already takes pretty wide angles? At any rate, it doesn’t seem to give me much extra space along the sides, but it does warp the image a bit, giving it a rounded look, as you can see from the pattern of our living room rug.

I’ll experiment more with it — maybe there’s something I’m missing here.

Anyhoo, onward to the fish eye lens! A negative Amazon review of this one cracked me up — someone complained that it left “a black rectangle around the outside.” Because, I guess, they expected their image files to come out round.

Trouble in the fish eye

A couple of issues with the fish eye lens: the blue color of the lenses I chose, and difficulty focusing.

I found that in most of my fish-eye pictures, especially ones in bright light, there was a ring of blue around the outside, since that’s the color I bought the lenses in. So if you want an all-black ring around your pictures, I’d advise getting a set of these in black. I didn’t even think about the possibility that they’d capture a wee bit of the edge of the lens.

Not the best focus job in the world.

The second part is the focus. Sometimes I was able to get things to focus really well, and other times, no matter what I tried, things came out kind of blurry. I’m not sure if this is a case of unsteady hands, or a smudge on the lens (the little bag they came with doubles as a cleaning cloth, which is handy, but I felt like I was constantly having to wipe these lenses for smudges and fingerprints while we were outside).

Other shots, though, came out relatively crisp and sharp:

Our beloved Tower, for the last time before we move.

Or, at least, sharp in the center of the picture. I expect things to get a little blurry around the outside, due to the warped nature of the whole thing. But it was hard most of the time to get things in sharp focus in the very middle of the shot.

The fish eye will definitely merit a lot more experimenting, with close-up and distance stuff, as well as low light versus bright light. I don’t think the blurriness problem is necessarily an issue with the lens itself, since I did get a couple of shots that were on the sharper side — I think it’s a matter of learning how to use it correctly.

So, overall: fun and cheap! The macro is the best of the bunch so far. They also make other lenses, like a hilarious tiny telephoto lens. And you can find an option where you stick a magnetic ring around your phone’s camera, then just attach the lenses via magnet, instead of with a clip.

Cheddar in the wide angle