Passion Project Day 6
Camera Lens Essential II
The first episode gives a quick overview of what a good lens means, but knowing the specification of a good lens is far from enough. Excellent photographers are also proficient in choosing lenses based on different situations.
Most of the online articles about lens selection make a long list of situations with its corresponding lens suggestions, which is tedious and ineffective because you don’t know why or in which way a particular type of lens is good at.
So, I want to adopt a quicker and more efficient way, by giving a broader view of two categories: prime lens and zoom lens situation.
Why Prime lens?
A major reason why photographers use prime lens is to create the blurry effect. With a blurry background, photo’s main object perfectly stands out and attracts audiences’ attention.
There are two ways to create the blurry effect.
The first one is through a large aperture.
The second one is through the telephoto focal length.
Because prime lens can create such a strong sense of depth that distinguishes the main object from the background, photographers use prime lenses for portrait and sports.
The commonly-used portrait lens is 85mm f/1.4 or 105mm f/1.4. Both of them are large apertures, prime telephoto lenses.
The go-to lens for many sports and wildlife photographer is 300mm f/4.
Prime lens such as 20mm f/1.8 is also used for landscape and street photography. Because of its large aperture, the lens works pretty well in low light situation.
35mm f/1.4 and 50mm f/1.4 are the most well-round prime lens because its focal length is neither too wide nor too zoom. They can be used for street, portrait, and landscape photos.
Why Zoom lens?
A practical reason is that it is convenient. You can zoom in to shoot objects meters away but also can zoom out to shoot objects beside you.
One of the best-values Nikon zoom lenses is 24-120mm f/4G. The lens features a focal length from wide-angle to a moderate telephoto range and a fixed aperture (professional lens standard). Although its aperture is not as large as the professional standard zoom lens of the Hebrew Trinity 24-70mm f/2.8G, 24-120mm f/4G features a wider focal range and, more importantly, a much reasonable price!! (600USD rather than 2400USD).