Oooooh we are mixin’ up the batter and TODAY’S batch are these jam filled pancakes from Williams Sonoma. See, we picked these because we are hoping this post is FILLED with good advice! Get it?? wink wink :) Oh who am I kidding….it’s because they look DELICIOUS and I really want one of these pans! Anybody out there want to buy me one?! AND make me pancakes while you’re at it? Anybody, anybody….Bueller?
Alright…down to business: Lenses.
What kind? How to shoot em? What’s important?
Let me first start off by saying that Justin & I prefer to shoot only with all prime lenses (aka fixed lenses like an 85, as opposed to a zoom). As of now, we only work with one zoom lens and that’s our 70-200mm 2.8. The reason that we prefer all prime lenses is because we’ve just found them to be sharper and produce those crispy-creme images that we all love to get. They also tend to be faster (open up to a wider aperture, ie. 1.4, 1.8 ), and Justin & I like to shoot wide open 99.9% of the time. Those two things, the crispness and the low depth of field from shooting wide-open, are a HUGE part of the look of our images. We’re going to do another pancake session soon on post-processing, but really a lot of what those questions are asking about starts in camera with some good lenses. So let’s start there!
NAVY SOU: Jimminy freakin’ Christmas!!! How in the world do you get such creamy complected skin??? Inquiring minds wants to know!!!
The answer to this question really has three parts: sharpness/shallow depth of field, lighting/exposure, and post-processing. So I’ll come back to it in those pancake sessions too. But for now, the first step for us is shooting wide open and using single point focus on the eye. Because of the quick fall off with the fast lenses, the eye is really sharp and the rest of the face & body just naturally smoothes out a bit with the shallow depth of field. The other two steps of lighting/exposure & post-processing are probably more important, but this is the base we always start with so i just wanted to touch on it here!
KIM: Ok…lets say you were going to a shoot and you could only take one lens..which one would it be? And why?
Ooooh HANDS DOWN it would have to be the 85mm 1.4. We are both IN LOVE with this lens and fight over it often. It did take me a while to get used to how spot on you have to be with your focusing, but once I did it was so worth it. It produces the creamiest, dreamiest shots ever. Seriously. One more thing…as one sort of rule we always like to put out there to people: if you are going to invest in a fast lens like a 1.4 or 1.2, spend the time learning how to nail your focus so you actually shoot it that wide open when it counts. I’ve seen so many people drop a ton of money on a 1.2 lens and then shoot it all the time at 2.8 or higher because they’re scared of the focus. That’s no fun at all!
ANA REBECA: I have a quick question…I want to buy a wide angle lens (not a fisheye) but have no idea what to get :(
BETSY JO: The veil – oh. my. Was that one with the new Zeiss lens? I am amazed by that shot- gor. GEOUS. I literally said, “Wow.” out loud. (And I rarely talk to my computer screen, so that’s saying something!)
Well as you guys know, we’ve been LOVIN our 25 2.8 Carl Zeiss lens. That lil’ guy is TACK SHARP. And it has the focusing capabilities of a macro, so it’s really a duel-threat lens. The only hitch is that it is a manual focus lens, but we actually like that because who among us HASN’T been trying to shoot something with an auto-focus macro and it just keeps making that dreaded “zzhhhhhht zzhhhhhht” sound (that’s my impression of the focusing sound….can you hear it? :) And everybody in the room is looking at you and you’re like “I swear, I’m a professional!” Yea….we’ve all been there. For more info on the 25mm 2.8 we did a post HERE and it was also responsible for most of the shots you see HERE.
Other than that, for Nikon we also love the 14mm 2.8 which has very little distortion for a super-wide and the 24mm 1.4 for Canon which is just a SWEET fast lens!
Happy Pancake Day!!!
PS: Don’t forget, if you have any pancake questions you can leave them in the comment box or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org