My Favourite Camera Lenses
November 25, 2015
I’ve been planning to write this blog post for quite some time! One of my most common questions is: “What camera do you use?”. Now, I know that is an important question, but I wanted to answer with a bit more detail and go right to the lenses. I do shoot with a Canon SLR, EOS 70D camera, however I switch out my lenses ALL THE TIME! When I first started with this camera I honestly had no idea what I was doing. It took some time to learn about the right lighting and what settings to use when shooting in the manual setting. Which is a whole other blog post, I touched a bit on lighting in this post: “How to capture a bright and airy photo”.
Today I’m going to share what I’ve learned about the different lenses I’ve used in the past three years and which ones are my favourite AND why I’ve chosen to invest in more expensive options. I’m going to try to stick to basic terms to make it as easy to follow along as possible. Because, honestly I get lost ready about camera tips all the time! (I YouTube tutorial videos all the time!)
Today I’m going to talk about 6 different lenses, including the beloved 50mm! I’m going to leave the 50mm till last because it’s definitely become the blogger favourite. However I’ve also veered to three other favourites as well. You’ll find out why I like to switch out a lens 1-3 times whenever I shoot. Follow along with the photos above to see the difference between each lens. Please keep in mind that with each photo I stood in the exact same spot.
The Wide Angle Zoom Lens 17-40mm. I’m going to start out with this lens because I use it a lot! Especially when I photograph my home. If you’ve used a 50mm lens you know that you have to stand way back to get a larger area in your frame. This can be challenging when shooting a room or a larger group of people. Especially when you don’t have too much room to move around. I decided I wanted to try a wide angel lens for that reason. It’s so much easier to capture a space, while at the same time being able to zoom in on your subject! As you can see the above photo shows the most area from the spot I was standing. The 17-40mm is an amazing lens, it’s a bit pricey but it shoots amazing quality photos. The images are sharp and capture gorgeous coloring. I’ve been super happy with it.
The macro 40mm lens is somewhat similar, but doesn’t have quite the same range of area and doesn’t zoom. I like this lens because it’s small, and easy to travel with. I also like it for flat lay images. I also find it fits more in the frame. I still end up using my wide angle lens over this one just because of the quality of the lens. But it’s a great lens to try out, and inexpensive.
The big old 70-200 mm zoom lens. This lens is crazy! Crazy large, crazy heavy and crazy amazing. But when I say zoom, I really mean ZOOM. I took two photos above. Again, standing in the same spot, 1) zoomed in & 2) zoomed out. You can see how incredible it is for capturing your subject. In this case either a full floral arrangement, or a single flower. This lens is a huge favourite amongst wedding photographers, as well as bloggers. It let’s you be far way enough to let the person you are photographing feel comfortable in their own space. I typically never use this lens inside. I like to use it outdoors, when I have more room to stand back and let my subject do their thing. I’ve found it super efficient when photographing Liam, I’m not right in his face with the camera which lets him be more relaxed… letting me get the perfect shot. Plus the lens captures ahhhh-mazing quality photos. Blurred out backgrounds and crazy sharp subject. The only down fall with this lens is it’s quite heavy, so keeping steady is key!
Okay lets talk 50mm. You’ll notice that I’ve included three different 50mm lenses. Typically people start with the f/1.8 because of it’s great price point, around $150+. Then when they think they’re improving their photography they work up to a f/1.4, then f/1.2. The price does jump quite a bit from one to the other. Each of these prime lenses will capture a similar shot. However if you’re looking for the most beautiful blurry background (bokeh) with an incredibly sharp image of your subject with a wide open aperture, it’s a no brainer that the 50mm f/1.2 is the best. It might be hard to tell with the images above, but having used all three lenses, I find that I get the most clear and sharp images with the f/1.2. I tend to delete a lot less of my images due to them being blurry. I find that the color and contrast are more crisp. I also found that with the f/1.4 and f/1.8 I had to take a lot of photos to get that one amazing sharp, in focus image. Once you start to take more photos and feel more comfortable with your knowledge of the manual mode, you’ll quickly realize the difference in quality of photos from each one of these lenses.
Lenses are definitely not cheep. So don’t think you have to go out and buy the best lens right away. Play around with what you have and once you’re comfortable to move up, visit your local camera store and rent a lens before buying! Henry’s has a number of locations where you can try lenses out and even sit in on one of their classes to learn more! Hope this post has helped and given you a bit more insight on choosing the perfect lens for you!
Floral arrangment from Floralista.
Thank you Henry’s for sponsoring this post. All comments and opinions are my own.