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  1. #1
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    Lens for portraits

    Hi all,
    We are expecting a baby in the next few days and want to buy a new portrait lens.
    I own a 15-30 tamron 2.8, and am looking at the Tamron 35mm 1.8.
    I'm interested to see what your thoughts are on this lens, but and why I wouldn't just use my current 15-30 lens
    Thanks, Riley
    Rabs
    Nikon enthusiast

  2. #2
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    Re: Lens for portraits

    I'm not familiar with either of those options, but my best portrait lenses have longer focal lengths than that. eg: 55 mm Zeiss 1.8 and 105 mm Sigma 2.8. (Both Full Frame). It's great to be able to stand a little further away to get your shots.

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    Re: Lens for portraits

    I do have a nikor 50mm prime 1.8, its pretty good, just looking at some different alternatives
    Rabs
    Nikon enthusiast

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    Re: Lens for portraits

    Importantly - What camera(s) are you using? Do you have any other lenses?

    A very fast 35mm Lens on 135 Format Camera is an exquisite choice for Portraiture and to capture some environmental aspects: I don't do many Portraits of Newborns, per se, but I do note that the trend is (and has always been) to include some environmental aspects.

    If you're a believer in "NOT using Flash for Babies" - then a fast lens will be some advantage, but not essential.

    That stated, 30mm at F/2.8 will do very similar.

    I use a 35/1.4 on Canon 5 Series Cameras, the lens is usually at about F/2.2.

    18449704-lg.jpg

    9205014-lg.jpg

    WW

    All Images © AJ Group Pty Ltd Aust 1996~2019 WMW 1965~1996
    Last edited by William W; 10-03-2019 at 01:56 PM. Reason: additional comments added

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    Re: Lens for portraits

    I'm using a Nikon D810, and have Tamron 15-30 F2. 8, Nikor 50mm 1.8 prime, and Tamron 70-200 2.8.
    Rabs
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    Re: Lens for portraits

    Then I'd ask that you mount a reasonable argument to spend money on a 35/1.8.

    If I were in your position, as a financial advisor advising a Client - what would be the ROI?

    WW

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    Re: Lens for portraits

    Congratulations on the upcoming addition to your Family.

    WW

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    Re: Lens for portraits

    ROI, ha ha, we are amateur photographers, we just love buying new stuff. But seriously, I believe prime lenses to be sharper, hence the original question.
    And if I'm going to pay +$500 for a birth photographer to do some, then I may as well get something out of it for me too
    Rabs
    Nikon enthusiast

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    Re: Lens for portraits

    Quote Originally Posted by Rabs View Post
    ROI, ha ha, we are amateur photographers, we just love buying new stuff. But seriously, I believe prime lenses to be sharper, hence the original question.
    And if I'm going to pay +$500 for a birth photographer to do some, then I may as well get something out of it for me too
    Glad you liked my pun.

    I reckon "amateur" + "love buying stuff" is seriously relevant to ROI.
    Amateur is for the love of it - to have fun: pity the person who doesn't get fun out of buying "stuff" for their hobby.

    Yes I reckon that it's a good bet that equal $ for $ Primes will be a bit sharper than Zooms: that said there are some exceptional Zoom Lenses today, for example (I bailed out of Nikon around 2004 so I have no first hand hard data), but I reckon their latest 24 to 70/2.8 would be equatable to the Canon 24 to 70/2.8L MkII.

    That stated the Tamron Lenses you're quoting are well received (and well reviewed) and I certainly have no slight against Tamron.

    Back to the original question - on the balance of all the information, especially the very swank D810 you own, if I were in your shoes, my money would go toward very nice fast 24 to 70/2.8.

    Yes I know I am advising you spend more... and you have a new born on the way: but hell, that 24 to 70 will compass a lot of shots of the Bub and Mum for the next several years - anyway you can blame me.

    On another note - BECAUSE Zoom Lenses are so excellent nowadays - Prime Lenses have been relegated to being sort of only useful when they used in conjunction with other Prime Lenses. Sure my 35/1.4 is great: I don't use it as much now as I did five years ago but it still gets a lot of use and much of that use is 'amateur' use, but a salient point is the 35/1.4 is most often used and most useful with a second camera sporting an 85/1.8 or 135/2, or sometimes with three cameras and that lens trio.

    On a second other note - unless you're a bit off-beat (as I am) and you have already collected your day to day gear to take all the photos that you want - you then might start building a Prime Lens farm (for my EOS M5), might as well be only very fast lenses and for that you've generally got to go to Manual Focus - again this is a example of a peculiarity rather than buying good quality zoom lenses for your base kit and use thsoe to make day to day, good quality photos of your Family and stuff that you find interesting.

    Anyway, don't you have to make some advertising shots for your business?

    WW

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    Re: Lens for portraits

    WW, Thanks for your feedback, you certainly have a wealth of knowledge. Plenty for me to consider before making a purchase. Be good to follow you on insta, do you have a handle?
    As for advertising, I'm with a big company, so no need for me to shoot, but maybe one day I can venture out on my own.
    Rabs
    Nikon enthusiast

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    Re: Lens for portraits

    Rabs,

    You're welcome. I am sure you will spend your money wisely and get enjoyment in so doing.

    Too old and die-hard for 'handles' and 'instagram' - still making money using 'contacts' and 'face to face toe to toe meetings with decision makers' - yeah I know 'insta' is just another one of the many more modern contact conduits available... - too many conduits, too much to keep up to date, fresh and bubbling over, ergo less time to spend making money or spending it - or pay someone to do the maintenance.

    I have some assorted pics in my Bio Page here [LINK] - if that's one thing you're after.

    ***

    Quote Originally Posted by Rabs View Post
    . . . As for advertising, I'm with a big company, so no need for me to shoot, increadibly valuable but maybe one day I can venture out on my own.
    Anyway... and W A Y of topic, Around 1994 I went to one of those really expensive locked away weekends for high end performers and the type that cost lots of money to attend: The cast of presenters all very well known high profile blokes and girls from around the world was amazing. I learnt heaps, much of which stuck in my brain as little gems of wisdom. I'd like to share one with you:

    We numbered about 100 in the audience.

    This bloke was on the stage and asked - “hands up those who run their own company?” About 75 people responded.

    Then he said - “those with your hands down are at a total loss and are behind the eight-ball. You folk have just been shown an incredibly valuable lesson, but I doubt many of you can see it.”

    WW

  12. #12
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    Re: Lens for portraits

    I was not going to get into this "which is best" thing; but ..... for ducking sake, get over super quality thing for your kids photos
    ....once they start to get around a bit a zoom is best for kids --- you will never long long enough

    Most if not ALL the photos my daughter has taken of her 2-3 month old are iPhone pics --- not that the "1" makes much difference.
    You don't need a dslr and big lens --- you just will not use it after awhile . How many super big photos do you think you will need/have/want if you have enough the wall space. (and she has her, and my Oly gear!! )

    You, and your partner will need a camera that is quick and easy to use --- emotions and timing are far more important pixels.
    Yes; I used my film "pro" gear for some of my kids (4) photos; however I feel some of the best pics came from a couple of great little Olympus P+S cameras that would be considered total ***p against today's incredible cameras and photo quality. One was a fixed 35mm and other was 28 -100 or thereabouts . I even used those cameras at wedding for some fun pics --- back in the day when a wedding was covered with 120-180 clicks and babies didn't need to smile for the camera 50 times day while parents used burst mode all the time

    That's my 1/2 penny worth.

  13. #13
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    Re: Lens for portraits

    Hiya Ian ---

    Awwwww common --- the guy just wants to plan how he will spend some money on a nice new lens: like for celebrating his new baby; I think that's a driving force: most new Dads want it to be the "best".

    Thanks, I think that you're hanging with my advice and telling him to get a zoom --- I think I wasn't direct enough --- so here goes:

    Rabs, BUY a zoom you'll get much more use out of doing that than buying a Prime.

    Cheers

    Bill

  14. #14
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    Re: Lens for portraits

    G'day Bill, yep ZOOM it Rabs
    For the price of a new lens he can get a couple of Pana Fz300 cameras with a consistent F2.8 25-600mm lens -- that is my only camera now. I would hate to going back the SLR / DSLR / 120 formats . FZ300 has a great video also -- not that I have ever used it.

  15. #15
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    Re: Lens for portraits

    Quote Originally Posted by IanB View Post
    . . . I would hate to going back the SLR / DSLR / 120 formats . FZ300 has a great video also -- not that I have ever used it.
    I've had a Canon PowerShot for many years, 'updated' through three models. I liked the advancement in both video and stills quality in model: though throughout I was still using a DSLR.

    Today (mainly because of the business moving to a different focus, pun intended) and as I mentioned in a reply to Rabs, I use my DSLR Kit less often and my new adventure is Mirrorless. I went with an EOS M5, mainly because of the range of EF Lens that I have - of course, the facts are I rarely EF Lenses on the M5. I bought a pair of EF-M Zoom Lenses for making Photos and I started collecting a few very fast Manual Prime Lenses for making other Photos.

    WW

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    Re: Lens for portraits

    the canon / nikon mirrorless will be interesting to watch. The Oly m/less are great to use. sort of missing [just a little] my Oly em d1 now that I have given it to my daughter to sell or use -- she has had an emd 5 for years.
    Canon powershot: I have had several of those up to G12 but didn't upgrade past there as they removed the swivel screen . However I have often considered the G5x (??) -- just wish the lens was threaded for filters. I would likely lose the slip on type .

  17. #17
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    Re: Lens for portraits

    Quote Originally Posted by IanB View Post
    the canon / nikon mirrorless will be interesting to watch. The Oly m/less are great to use. sort of missing [just a little] my Oly em d1 now that I have given it to my daughter to sell or use -- she has had an emd 5 for years.
    Canon powershot: I have had several of those up to G12 but didn't upgrade past there as they removed the swivel screen . However I have often considered the G5x (??) -- just wish the lens was threaded for filters. I would likely lose the slip on type .
    Still got a Canon G12. Don't use it though.

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