Discussion in 'Canon EOS' started by arthur_bunda|1, Feb 10, 2004.
what is the best prime lenses for covering weddings.
A 3 lens set consisting of a 24/2.8 (bigger groups up close & reception tables), 35/2 (main lens, most versatile of the group) and 85/1.8 (individual portraits & good for grab shots from a distance) would cover most all of what you'd need to shoot. If you were in a big church you may need to add a 200/2.8 for available light shots from the rear of the church.
I take 90% of my shots with the 50 1.4 lens. Very sharp and a fast lens in low light. If I need to shoot farther away, I use the 100 2.0
I'm a prime nut (I have the four Greg suggested) but I think that for weddings, a zoom is essential. I did that only once and I think that unless you have several bodies, one for each lens, you'd be better of with a zoom. I'd pick the 24-70/2.8 if I had a film/1Ds body and 16-35/2.8 or 17-40/4 if I had the 10D.
Happy shooting ,
I also think a zoom 28-135IS or 24-70 f2.8 would be a good choice for the wedding it self. That's what I use on my 10D and my D60 only because I can't afford two 24-70s. Most group shots are posed with plenty of time to back up as far as nessary to get them all in the 24mm frame. The Brides dressing room requires as much wide angle as you can afford. I am using a 20mm f2.8 with good sucess. Hope this helps.
Here are some tips. Many of them you'll probably already know and some may be new.
Yakim has it right. These events are fast moving at times and there is little time to be fumbling around changing primes. I use the 28-135 Image Stabilized cause with it I can get the shutter speed down at least one extra stop to collect more ambient light to help compensate for the rapid light fall off of a flash in dimly lit churches and reception rooms. I rarely shoot at low f stops at weddings. The depth of field is small and optics performance is not optimal. (I grip 'n rip in Manual Mode at f8 and vary the shutter speed from 1/15 to 1/60 using digital gear and the high end e-ttl flash)
I would also recommend a flash bracket to get the head higher up to reduce red eye and shadows, and a bonus would be the tiffen camera flip. It rotates the body while keeping the flash head pointed at your subject...also you don't have to drop the camera to rotate the head if your bouncing light. I always use one when using a flash.
For portraits after the ceremony primes are OK because youre controlling the subject and timing of your photos...and this is one time when I will shoot at lower f stops to blur backgrounds when needed.
Another issue would be theft. I like the zoom because I put it on and lock up all the other gear an wander around during the reception comfortable that my other stuff is safe. If your going to do ten to twenty lense swaps there is a good chance you leave your gear unlocked. I cable lock the case down as well.
If youre the "Pro" at the event make sure you have two systems and loads of film and batteries. Nothing ruins the couples wedding more than saying "I can't take pictures"
Scout the site and try to attend the rehearsal to plan and couch the party.
Get a book from Amherst media. They've dozens about wedding photography.
If youre not the "Pro" then stay WELL away from the person who is. I shot a wedding two weeks ago some HUGE bozo kept getting in front of me during shots to 'sneak one' He even blocked me when the couple was coming down the aisle at the end of the ceremony. His cheesy Sony point 'n shoot had one of those strobe red eye things. That damn thing gave me more than one 'eyes closed' shot. I can't prove it but at one point he did something that locked up my camera for a shot. Eventually I had to have a word with him!
Your prints should be archival grade. So use a good lab as opposed to your local drug store.
Lastly never shoot on their film and give them the rolls at the end of the day
especially if your getting paid for your time.
Like I mentioned before, I have the 50 1.4, 28 2.8, and 100 2.0, I don't own a zoom. It is difficult at times to switch lenses so I have two bodies. One with the 50 and the other with whatever focal distance is appropriate from where I'm standing at. I've done six weddings now. I know that many people recommend flash brackets but I have never once had a problem with red eye. The ex flashes are very tall. Even shooting vertically I have not had a problem. A good zoom is very convenient but I always wonder about the image quality compared to the prime. I've essentially bettered the 28-80 2.8 wonder zooms at a cheaper price at the cost of convenience of a zoom. I have pondered about buying the Tamron 28-75 2.8 which is low priced and many say is comparable to the images from the much more expensive Canon.
A good zoom is very convenient but I always wonder about the image quality compared to the prime.
In 1975 that was an issue.
In 1985 it was less of an issue.
Now - it really isn't - if you get a good zoom.
Will they be as good as a high quality prime? No - but getting the shot with the right focal length is better than massive cropping even from a good prime, and certainly missing the right perspective because your currently mounted lens was too long.
Rent a quality prime and shoot a couple rolls. You'll be impressed.
er, I meant rent a quality zoom.
Right on Peter. A sharp lense is a bad lense if you have to crop three quarters of the image to frame it right for a print. And what happens when you're asked for an 11x14+ enlargement of that 4x6 proof that's only twenty five percent of the original image. YUK!
Most good wedding shots boil down to good timing and interacting with people in a manner that gets them to shine in front of your camera. Besides these days most clients value a photographer who can shoot candids that express the family having fun. It's often a split second window to grab that money shot, so a zoom is KEY!
So back to my first post. Use both. Primes for portraits and zooms for candids.
35mm, 50mm and 85 or 100mm should be all you need to cover an average wedding.
If you go wider than 35, make sure your flash provides coverage to the edges of the photo. I would be careful with using a 24mm for that reason, and for the possible distortion of it might give.
a zoom in the 35-105 range would work fine as long as it is good quality.
I shot an entire wedding with a 28 and another with a 50. You should use whatever lens enables you to take your best photos. Your clients aren't photography critics and won't think, "Gee, I wish you had used a longer lens here." They just want quality, flattering photos of themselves. Better to shoot than fiddle with lens changes--if you can help it.
35mm Summilux Aspherical, 50mm Noctilux, 90mm Summicron.
Oops, wrong forum.
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