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Cameras, Lenses and Accessories: Discuss Portrait lens...Would realy like you views on which lens to use for protraits i do have the 17-55mm kit lens that ...
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Old 28-11-2008, 02:51   #1 (permalink)
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Portrait lens

Would realy like you views on which lens to use for protraits i do have the 17-55mm kit lens that came with my 350d i also have a 50mm prime 1.8 as well as the 17-85mm is usm that has come with the 40d. The question is do i need anouther one or will these do

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Old 28-11-2008, 05:18   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Portrait lens

IMO those should be fine for now.
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Old 28-11-2008, 07:33   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Portrait lens

On a 1.6x crop body camera (which you have) then the ideal range for portraits is between 35-50mm so you already have the lenses to do this.

If you have a little bit of space to work with and can alter your position relative to the subjects then the 50mm will be perfect and give you the best results, a prime lens always will. The fact that it allows you to shoot at f1.8 also means its good for getting a shallow depth of field and also working in low or natural light too.

If you prefer to use a zoom then the 17-85IS will return good results as well although perhaps restricting some of your creativity.

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Old 28-11-2008, 18:24   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Portrait lens

I'm going to disagree with Steve here and say that there is no such thing as an ideal lens for portraits (nor for any other subject). I've seen effective portraits made with everything from a fisheye to a 500mm mirror lens, it all depends on how you see the world and each individual subject.

What's more, if you're good at your job, all you need is one lens, any lens. Yousuf Karsh / Photographer one of the most influential portrait photographers to date, famously used one camera and one lens. What he did have was lots of lights and a clear understanding of what he wanted to show. A lot of other very successful photographers in that field did the same.

If you really want to do portraits, learn how to light and practice hard at getting to know your subjects. That's the real key to good portraits.
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Old 29-11-2008, 08:37   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Portrait lens

With all due respect sejanus, not everyone is a Yousuf Karsh and we have to aim our advice at the skill level of the person asking the question.

In this case if the OP had a idea about portraits then this question would not have been posed and so we can safely assume that telling them that any lens is fine (technically yes, but for a beginner there are certain lens recommendations that will help make his job and journey easier) is not the correct response.

Its a bit like me recommending every landscape photographer to dump their wides and buy the biggest telephoto lens they can afford and the either walk miles to get the scene in shot or learn to see everything differently.
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Old 29-11-2008, 09:40   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Portrait lens

Quote:
Originally Posted by dazza2267 View Post
Would realy like you views on which lens to use for protraits i do have the 17-55mm kit lens that came with my 350d i also have a 50mm prime 1.8 as well as the 17-85mm is usm that has come with the 40d. The question is do i need anouther one or will these do

Dazza

The simple asnwer to your question is no, not right now, the 50mm prime and the 17-85 will do you fine, first of all learn how to take a portrait, learn how to pose a model and how to use the eyes, find your niche, find where you want to go with your portrait, learn to walk before you can run and enjoy the journey of discovery.
By that time people will be asking you this question as they think that you know the answer.
There is no perfect lens, there will be a lens that you will love, you may find you have it or you may find that it is the next you buy, mine is an old 105mm macro sigma, but the eye contact and the way I work, it works for me.
I know another on here oves to use a 1.4 prime lens for DOF.
You need to go and play first, find what you like to take, show then ask. As everyone will come up with a different answer and it maynot be the right one for you.
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Old 29-11-2008, 20:49   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Portrait lens

Thanks for that it has given me a lot to think about and i shal have a play with the lenses i have.

Cheers

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Old 29-11-2008, 21:44   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Portrait lens

The lenses you have are perfect. If you want flexibility of focal range on one lens with decent optics, then the 24-105 L lens is pretty good
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