Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Camera Lenses

I’m an amateur photographer at best, but I think I am finally growing beyond my “kit” lenses that came with my camera. I’ve been shooting with a Canon Rebel XTi for just over 2 years now. The camera came with 2 lenses, an EF-S 18-55 mm 1:3.5-5.6 II and an EF 75-300 mm 1:4-5.6 III. Until now, they’ve both served me well and I have no doubt they are great beginner lenses. I’m sure I will continue to get a lot of use out of them as there is still a lot I don’t know about photography and about the camera.

Yesterday, before the rain returned, I was outside attempting to take photos of my flowers and I couldn’t get the photos I was visualizing in my head. Part of the reason was because the blooms were all pointed downward and I was lying on the ground, on my back, having a hard time getting the angle I wanted without manipulating the flowers. The other reason was I couldn’t get the narrow depth of field I wanted. The light was heavy overcast natural outdoor lighting. I opened the aperture as wide as I could, which was only ƒ4.5 or ƒ5, and used as long of an exposure as I could keep still for, which isn’t long (1/125). Here are the photos as they were, straight out of the camera:


The colors are bold, but something about them looks kind of “blah.” I was aiming for a blurrier background (bokeh I think its called), and slightly brighter. Yes, I know I could manipulate them in Photoshop, but I don’t like to do this more than necessary. My thinking is if I need to alter it that much, I should have taken a better photo in the first place. Don’t get me wrong, Photoshop totally has a place, but I want to learn how to take a better photo and not rely on Photoshop too heavily to fix the problems.

I guess what I need to find out is do I invest in a higher quality multipurpose lens with a slightly wider aperture capabilities, a fixed focal length lens with wider aperture, or a true macro lens. I do like macro photography and this is definitely something I would like to do more of, but I need to do a lot more research and maybe find some knowledgeable help.

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