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Thread: what lens to use for protraitures?

  1. #1

    Default what lens to use for protraitures?

    Seasoned portraiture shooters, please share what lens you all used.

    Was thinking if the Nikon 50mm f1.8 is good for portraits giving backgrd blur?
    Anyone can enlightnend?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: what lens to use for protraitures?

    a 50mm will be nice for a half body shot,but working distance is quite near.

    a longer focal length like 85 or 105mm might give a more comfortable working distance.

  3. #3

    Default Re: what lens to use for protraitures?

    Why would you want to take someone from far? The fun of portraiture is in the communication. And a successful piece will need that most.

    By the way, 50mm is quite a good lens. With another wide angle (17mm - 50+mm) will be pretty good for most occassions. Don't always use the same lens. Think of what picture you wanna capture, and use the appropriate lens.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: what lens to use for protraitures?

    bare minimal is 50mm (35mm format) without creating perpsective distortion which might create un-flattering pictures. example like making the nostrils looked bigger then normal.

    the bigger the F-stop, the better it gets for "blur background". depends on the make of the lens as well for good bokeh.

  5. #5

    Default Re: what lens to use for protraitures?

    50mm f/1.4 or 85mm f/1.4

    those f/1.8 will eventually upgrade to 1.4...

  6. #6

    Default Re: what lens to use for protraitures?

    hmmm......

    50 85mm.....

    anyway...85 is a good range to use...even for half bodies...work based on ya space constraint....i'm on an 85 most of the time.... 50 unless i want full bodies.... for outdoors ...sth the spaces are really crammed....i got a 28...tt's severely UNDERUTILIZED..

    anyway...no need for primes la...its not a must...anything ard this range will be cool also lo...its the perspective tt matters...

    cheers

  7. #7

    Default Re: what lens to use for protraitures?

    thanks fellas.

    Just like to ask another thing...
    what is the average price of the 85mm f1.8 and the 55mm f1.4?

  8. #8

    Default Re: what lens to use for protraitures?

    85-105mm ... good foreground DOF ie. the person your shooting, with a bit more softer focus, while blurring the background nicely. 50mm is to sharp especially if your shooting older subjects IMHO.

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    Default Re: what lens to use for protraitures?

    Quote Originally Posted by exhibitj
    thanks fellas.

    Just like to ask another thing...
    what is the average price of the 85mm f1.8 and the 55mm f1.4?
    If u are referring to Nikon lens there is a price list page in Clubsnap forum:
    http://forums.clubsnap.com/showthread.php?t=151190

  10. #10

    Default Re: what lens to use for protraitures?

    Also, ifm i were to but a 2nd hand 50mm f1.8, how do i check to see that it is in good working condition? how to test it on the spot?

  11. #11

    Default Re: what lens to use for protraitures?

    i guess it depends on your idea of 'portraiture'.

    blurring the background away can be achieved by playing with the distance of the subject from the background, although wide apertures and long tele lenses (200mm?) would also help achieve that shallow DOF effect.

    just remember that portraiture does not always mean sharp face and blurry backgrounds.
    eyes | head | feet | flickr | APAD: straight from camera

  12. #12

    Default Re: what lens to use for protraitures?

    200mm is short

    use 400mm

  13. #13
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    Default Re: what lens to use for protraitures?

    I used before,

    10.5 f/2.8 FE
    12-24 f/4
    17-35 f/2.8
    18-35 f/3.5-4.5
    24-120VR f/3.5-5.6
    28-70 f/2.8
    35 f/2
    50 f/1.4
    50 f/1.8
    60 f/2.8
    85 f/1.8
    85 f/1.4
    105 f/2.8
    180 f/2.8
    70-200 f/2.8
    80-200 f/2.8
    200 f/2

    for portraits.







    In short, it's not what you use, it's what you want to capture

  14. #14
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    Default Re: what lens to use for protraitures?

    I read somewhere tat the commonly best regarded as portrait lens is at 90mm. Can anyone verify or attest to this?

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    Default Re: what lens to use for protraitures?

    Quote Originally Posted by esmondng
    I read somewhere tat the commonly best regarded as portrait lens is at 90mm. Can anyone verify or attest to this?
    Read my post before yours.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: what lens to use for protraitures?

    Quote Originally Posted by espn
    In short, it's not what you use, it's what you want to capture
    True, true. I guess it's really one of those personal preferences thingy. Thanks for ur opinio n.

  17. #17
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    Default Re: what lens to use for protraitures?

    Quote Originally Posted by esmondng
    I read somewhere tat the commonly best regarded as portrait lens is at 90mm. Can anyone verify or attest to this?
    In the old days, 80mm-105mm (include prime 80mm, 85mm, 90mm, 100mm, 105mm) are the most common lens to shoot portrait, it has very little distortion, and allows a comfortable working distance between photog and model.
    Nowadays ppl use all different focal length lens to shoot portrait, some go for wide perspective, some go for tight crop, some are for their own style, some are for experimental purpose.

  18. #18

    Default Re: what lens to use for protraitures?

    Quote Originally Posted by Astin
    In the old days, 80mm-105mm (include prime 80mm, 85mm, 90mm, 100mm, 105mm) are the most common lens to shoot portrait, it has very little distortion, and allows a comfortable working distance between photog and model.
    Nowadays ppl use all different focal length lens to shoot portrait, some go for wide perspective, some go for tight crop, some are for their own style, some are for experimental purpose.
    eh.... people used the 85-105 range because its GIVES a more REALISTIC NOSE TO EAR distance in the print la, as compared to wat u wanna shoot.... simply put...distortion... tt's y they are regarded as portrait lens/perspectives.....its is ard the field of view u see with one eye...as is 50mm the field u see with 2....

    u wanna make someone's legs look longer, by all means use a 28....juz take note tt his/her features dun get distorted....

    portraiture is as simple as tt.....

    lenses that can cover from 28-85... prime or zoom, perspective is the same, though image quality may differ.... buten again, tt's a story for another time
    Last edited by Witness; 4th November 2005 at 07:14 PM.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: what lens to use for protraitures?

    It really depends on what your defination of a portrait is. If it's mugshot with a blur background, then an 85mm will work great for you.

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