• Dan Medley

Gear, more gear. - My Lenses

My favorite and most used lens is my Canon 85mm 1.8 (there is a 1.4 I want that is a wee bit more expensive for what I think is a minimal amount of gain) which I use for almost all of my portrait and head-shot sessions. The bang for the buck this lens provides is INSANE. It shouldn't be as affordable as it is. This lens is like a tank. It can take a beating and it keeps on ticking. If you want to take portraits, dog photos, street photography shots, head-shots, or almost anything... THIS IS YOUR LENS. Most people tell you to buy the next lens in my bag first. But I disagree and say spend a few more dollars and get the 85mm lens first. This one can be had for less than $400.

The Nifty 50. Every new photographer seems to buy a 50mm Canon Lens. They are $125 and they just work so dang well. I did start with this lens when I was shooting a lot of street photography around Nashville and it never caused me any issues. When I am shooting in a tighter environment, I switch to the 50 to get a little more width in my image while not distorting the subject. You really can't go wrong with this lens. Here's a bangin' deal for the lens plus some goodies like lens filters and bag!

I recently purchased a Tamron 35mm 1.4 that I will have to do a full write up on after I get to spend some time with it. It was between this lens and the Sigma 35mm Art lens. After a ton of review reading and getting lucky on timing it with a $200 off deal they are currently running, I pulled the trigger on it! Everything I've read mentions fast auto-focus, amazing sharpness from f/1.4 without any chromatic aberation, even sharper from f/2 on, amazing natural feeling color rendition, and some 'buttery smooth' bokeh. Even if you compare it to the 35mm f/2 Canon lens, everyone I discuss it with leans towards the Tamron. Can't wait to give a full update soon!

When I'm out on a Real Estate shoot, I utilize this beast of a lens. The Canon 24mm TS-E II. This lens is ridiculous in the best of ways. The size itself appears to dwarf the size of my 5D body and requires a hefty tripod to help stabilize this bad boy when in use. It is also fully manual and has NO AUTO FOCUS. While intimidating at first, most of the time I'm using it I am not wide open and I'm shooting around f/8 and I haven't found many issues when it comes to getting it in focus. This lens produces sharp, colorful images that are beyond belief. Using a tilt-shift lens takes a little bit of practice and some knowledge you can gain from a few YouTube videos. But boy howdy is it worth it. While there are other tilt-shift lenses (like the 17mm), the 24mm is a much more useful focal length.

Up next: Lights!


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