Yesterday I came across a copy of Robert Doisneau’s Portraits of the Artists. It’s a beautiful book, displaying photos from a personal project spanning many decades. The oldest are over 70 years old. Not only do they capture the likeness of the various artists (some well known, like Picasso and Hockney, and others who have been forgotten by all except a few), they show the environments they lived and worked in. Several artists were pictured in various states of squalor in tiny Paris apartments, and it shows just how much living standards have improved in the intervening decades. But this aside, there are a few other things I thought about as I looked through the photos.
Twenty months ago I bought a Fujifilm X-Pro 1 camera. I was so impressed by it that I also bought an X-T1. Since then I’ve hardly used the X-Pro 1, which was relegated to the status of backup camera / second body.
Now that I have used Lightroom for many years, processing photos from two different camera systems (Canon EOS and Fujifilm X-series), I have realised that the most important setting in the Develop module is Profile in the Camera Calibration panel.
It may be difficult to know what lens to take on a street photography shoot, especially if you only have a vague idea of what you are going to take photos of. Quite often you are waiting for your subject to present itself to you, especially if you are new to a place and have little idea of what to expect from it.
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Out of all the lenses it is possible to use for street and travel photography wide-angle lenses are the ones I struggle with the most.
Even if you get close to your subject with a wide-angle lens you will always end up including the background in the frame. Considering that wide-angles also give more depth-of-field than longer focal lengths (when camera to subject distance and aperture are equal) it becomes harder to select a wide aperture to defocus the background. The end result is that wide-angles naturally include the setting as well as the person you are taking a photo of.
In Mastering Lenses I wrote a piece about the idea of simplicity in lens choice. I asked the question, if you could only own three lenses, which would they be? Of course, you have the freedom to buy as many lenses as you want, but it’s an interesting point to discuss as there are benefits in owning just three.
After the publication of Mastering Lenses last week I thought it useful to give you list of the lenses that I have owned since I bought my first digital SLR in 2006.
Like all photographers, I’ve made buying decisions that I later came to regret (or at least realised that I could have approached differently).
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Mastering Lenses: A Photographer’s Guide to Creating Beautiful Photos With Any Lens is written for everybody who wants to learn how to use their lenses to create better photos.
Buying a new lens can be one of the most difficult choices you make as a photographer. How do you know which lenses are a good buy if you can’t try them out beforehand? Why do some lenses cost so much and others so little? Should you buy a zoom lens or a prime? Is that superzoom a good a deal as it seems?