Flare? I've heard of that (!). It sounds like something very esoteric when described like this. A common phenomenon anyway.

I ask because I'm experimenting with homemade optics and having trouble controlling the incidental light. On one end, I'd like to tighten it up a little, but on the other, the flare gives the images a dreamy sort of quality. So I'm trying to find that balance.

Contrast is a problem too. I'm using a DSLR to work out the kinks, but I eventually want to adapt it to a Pentax SLR I have here.

Sorry to go off topic with my own concerns...