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Vintage Lenses for Indie Filmmakers MasterClass w/ Alan Besedin

One of the main goals of Indie Film Hustle is to give real-world knowledge and resources to indie filmmakers so they can make a living doing what they love. Film gear is a big part of that equation. I always am on the lookout for the best bang for the buck when it comes to film gear.

I recently began to dip my toes into the world of vintage lenses. Vintage lenses are exactly that, vintage. You may be asking

“Alex, why would I buy a 50-year-old lens that has color redition issues or is soft on the corners when the lenses of today are perfect, clean and more advanced?”

The main reason I’ve fallen in love with vintage lenses is exactly for that reason, they are not perfect. Years ago lenses were made by hand. Each lens had its own personality. Many of them have beautiful mistakes that made them stand out.

Case in point Stanley Kubrick. If you watch A Clockwork Orange you’ll notice a wide shot as the doorbell rings about 20min into the film. The crazy wide shot was filmed with a Kinoptik 9.8 F2.3. The lens is far from perfect but it has character. Kubrick was more focused on achieving an interesting shot rather than a perfect one. This coming from a legendary perfectionist.

Kubrick lenses collection was made up of most vintage lenses. He would buy 10 copies of the same lenses, test them all and pick the best of the bunch and return the rest.

Using vintage lenses can also take the “digital bite” off of modern-day camera sensors. The best thing about getting into vintage glass is the cost. You can get a beautiful “nifty 50mm” for between $20-$80. They’re literally thousands of lenses you can choose from, each one special in its own way.  Vintage lenses can truly give your film a unique look and make you stand out from the crowd.

Today’s guest Alan Besedin has been running in the filmmaking trenches for years and runs my go-to resource for vintages lenses I’ve watched every video and read every article on the site. It’s a wealth of info. Check out some samples below.

Also please support Alan’s amazing work by donating, even a dollar, to his Patreon. (

So enjoy my conversation with Alan Besedin from

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