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Thread: What would be me useful for portraiture?

  1. #1

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    What would be me useful for portraiture?

    Hi All,

    I shoot with an FX Nikon d700 and am tossing up between the 24-70mm f2.8 or the 70-200 f2.8 lenses.

    24-70mm is what I would shoot with daily for some landscapes and waterfall etc so this would appear for useful, but I am expecting my first grandchild soon and want to do a lot baby portraits etc and wonder if the 700-200mm would be better for this or would the 24-70mm be quite sufficient?

    Thanks for any advice. Can only afford to buy one lens as they are rather expensive.

    Deb

  2. #2
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    Re: What would be me useful for portraiture?

    Both are always in the arsenal of professional wedding and portrait photographers so it's really a tough choice for you to make. Since you mentioned portraiture as the main concern, I would recommend the 70-200mm as your priority to buy. These two are the dream lenses for any photographers, we would definitely envy you and congratulate you, too once you got it. Good luck.

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    Re: What would be me useful for portraiture?

    Thanks Jiro, the decision only seems to get harder to make not easier.

    Deb

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    Re: What would be me useful for portraiture?

    Hi Debbie,

    Wow, wish I had a choice of either of those. You've neglected to tell us what lenses you already have. Good ones I imagine as you have a pro body?

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    Re: What would be me useful for portraiture?

    Hi Debbie,

    For head and shoulders portraiture, definitely one of the 70-200mm family.
    Last edited by Colin Southern; 5th August 2011 at 12:31 PM.

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    Re: What would be me useful for portraiture?

    As Colin mentioned, the 70-200mm focal range is great for head and shoulders portraiture. However, if you have the shooting space, this focal range is also quite good for 3/4 and full figure portraiture. It is also great for many-many other uses such as travel and pet photography. It is, however, too short for most bird and wildlife photography but, quite nice for a lot of zoo photography. It is perhaps my favorite focal range which I use for close to half my imagery...

    What would be me useful for portraiture?

    What would be me useful for portraiture?

    What would be me useful for portraiture?

  7. #7

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    Re: What would be me useful for portraiture?

    Quote Originally Posted by The Blue Boy View Post
    Hi Debbie,

    Wow, wish I had a choice of either of those. You've neglected to tell us what lenses you already have. Good ones I imagine as you have a pro body?
    Hi Mark,

    I have both 60mm & 105mm macro lenses and Sigma 15mm fisheye and Tokina 1-17mm fisheye and all these are used for my underwater photography.
    Have never done much topside photography and now want to as the first grandchild is on the way.

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    Re: What would be me useful for portraiture?

    Colin,

    The decision was just made for me yesterday. I went to our Camera shops here in Melbourne - Australia, took my d700 and had a play around with both lenses and yes the 70-200 wins hands down.

    Deb

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    Re: What would be me useful for portraiture?

    Richard,

    Gorgeous shots. I have decided on the 70-200mm Nikon lens now. I hope to one day be able to produce the sort of shots you have here. Will post some when I get the lens and produce something I think is worthy of posting.
    Thanks for your help and I love those shots.
    Deb

  10. #10
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    An addition to your kit...

    A great addition to your kit for photos of the grandbaby (BTW: Congratulations) would be an off-camera flash and a diffuser reflector.

    I am a Canon guy and use an older 550EX flash on a Stroboframe flash bracket.
    http://cgi.ebay.com/Stroboframe-Flas...item2a124723ba

    I use an off-camera cord for the bracket, although I could work just fine indoors with my 7D wireless flash sync capability (I believe some Nikon cameras have this capability as well).

    I modify my flash with a Joe Demb Flash Diffuser Pro ( www.dembflashproducts.com ) but, have seen a diffuser/reflector which might work equally as well on eBay. This is available from Hong Kong with free shipping:
    http://cgi.ebay.com/Bounce-Card-Flas...item415b5d9bee

    BTW: I used this type of diffuser/reflector for my portraits of the young ladies. The diffuser/reflector is not specific to any one model flash unit and is interchangeable between hotshoe flashes. Bouncing a flash using the diffuser/reflector will not harm a baby.

  11. #11

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    Re: What would be me useful for portraiture?

    Thanks Richard,

    Just starting to look at all the bits and pieces you can use for portraiture. My husband is also going to make me ring light which he has seen made on you tube.

    Deb

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    Re: What would be me useful for portraiture?

    Quote Originally Posted by wommby View Post
    Thanks Richard,

    Just starting to look at all the bits and pieces you can use for portraiture. My husband is also going to make me ring light which he has seen made on you tube.

    Deb
    Hi Deb,

    To be honest, ring lights for portraiture were a fad that lasted about 5 minutes (right up there with Orton effect, spot colouring, and surreal HDR).

    The produce a very flat light which - as a rule - adds weight to faces, and is unflattering on all but the skinniest models. Once you get over the "outline shadow" effect they're not good for much.

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    Re: What would be me useful for portraiture?

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    Hi Deb,

    To be honest, ring lights for portraiture were a fad that lasted about 5 minutes (right up there with Orton effect, spot colouring, and surreal HDR).

    The produce a very flat light which - as a rule - adds weight to faces, and is unflattering on all but the skinniest models. Once you get over the "outline shadow" effect they're not good for much.
    I totally agree with Colin but, would like to add an additional point regarding ring lights. They produce circular, donut shaped, catchlights in the eyes which is very disconcerting to me. They make (IMO) the subject look like people in a 1950's Grade B horror movie whose bodies have been taken over by aliens. Additioally, the ringlights formed from multiple LED lights have even a more ghastly effect on the catchlights...

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    Re: What would be me useful for portraiture?

    Good is start at 70-200 F2.8, but I can bet, you will very soon get the 24-70 too!! this is what happen to me. Once you got addicted to the L lens, big aperture, you almost cannot get away from it, especially use it indoor!!
    enjoy it.

  15. #15

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    Re: What would be me useful for portraiture?

    Quote Originally Posted by rpcrowe View Post
    I totally agree with Colin but, would like to add an additional point regarding ring lights. They produce circular, donut shaped, catchlights in the eyes which is very disconcerting to me. They make (IMO) the subject look like people in a 1950's Grade B horror movie whose bodies have been taken over by aliens. Additioally, the ringlights formed from multiple LED lights have even a more ghastly effect on the catchlights...
    Hi,

    Read this once to my husband and that settled that, he won't be making me one now.
    Thanks for the tips - it's great to have this forum and get advice from professionals that know a lot more than I.
    Thanks again.

  16. #16

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    Re: What would be me useful for portraiture?

    Colin,

    Only need to be told once - no ring light being made now. Thanks heaps for your input. Is it you who put up the tutorials on portraiture?
    I have started to follow these and am waiting to get some reflectors. My biggest problem is having some one to model for me. Hubby just won't and my closest family is over an hour away. I might have to round up some of the young teenagers in my street and see if they are interested.

  17. #17

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    Re: What would be me useful for portraiture?

    Bill,

    You must have read my mind. This is definitely the next lens. Would love to see some of the shots you get from this lens.
    Deb

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    Re: What would be me useful for portraiture?

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    Hi Debbie,

    For head and shoulders portraiture, definately one of the 70-200mm family.
    I'm surprised by this thread that the preference would for the longer lens? Why is that? I was under the impression that the 50 or 55mm lens is the ideal for portraits? Unless I'm getting mixed up the a normal lens is good for portraits.

    Thanks,

    Erik

  19. #19

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    Re: What would be me useful for portraiture?

    Quote Originally Posted by cichlid View Post
    I'm surprised by this thread that the preference would for the longer lens? Why is that? I was under the impression that the 50 or 55mm lens is the ideal for portraits? Unless I'm getting mixed up the a normal lens is good for portraits.

    Thanks,

    Erik
    Hi Erik,

    Longer lenses give more compression, which is more flattering. Also, a head and shoulders portrait with a 50mm lens would have one "invading the personal space" of many subjects - especially on a FF camera.

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