Ep 118 Snapshot: Should you shoot wide or long? And your photo critiques.

With so many lenses to choose from, it can be a crap-shoot when deciding which is the best one to use. But you can choose the ideal focal length for your shot if you know what effect each focal length has.

In this episode, Gina and Valerie discuss what focal length does and how this impacts your shots – especially portraits.

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Show notes

Lens choice and proximity to your subject will have a big influence on how your portraits will look.

A focal length of 50mm has the least distortion and is the closest representation of what people really look like which is why this is the focal length of choice at passport offices.

A focal length of 200mm compresses facial features and is the most flattering making this focal length a favourite amongst portrait and fashion photographers.

Longer focal lengths of 85mm and higher compress facial features and are more flattering.

A focal length of 50mm is the most accurate representation of a face.

A focal length under 50mm tends to distort facial features, making these focal lengths ideal for character shots.

I love working with a focal length between 85mm and 200mm for most of my headshots, because I think it’s the most flattering. The closer the camera is to the model, the greater the lens distortion will be.

Many video bloggers and selfie lovers prefer the lens distortion caused by wide angle lenses.

An iPhone 6 has a lens that is roughly equal to a 29mm f16 lens on a DSLR.

It makes the face look slightly narrower than a longer lens does.

Benefits of shooting with longer lenses.

A longer lens will have a narrower angle of view.

If you want to capture a very wide panorama shoot on a focal length of 10-35mm

Long lenses are perfect for shooting very narrow angles of view and can turn a busy background into a beautiful location.

Longer lenses also create greater compression so if you want to create more blur in your background use a longer lens.

Photo Critiques

Photo critique for James Hughes

Hi facebook community. This is my first post here. I’ve been binge listening to the podcast over the last few months now, and loving it. I was listening to the “Group Hug” episode, and while listening I got a phone call to go and take a group shot of a company’s 17 employees. Must have been fate I guess. Anyway, I took notes, and copied some of Gina’s tip and tricks. Here’s the result. I ended up comping 5 separate frames together. Any comments, tips and suggestions would be very much appreciated. cheers guys.

Image by James Hughes

Photo critique for Ron Navarrete

Hi All!
I wanted your thoughts on these two images of this beautiful lady I recently photographed in Miami for an evening outdoor photo session two days ago. I would LOVE to have you (Gina Milicia and Valerie Khoo) critique the photo on an upcoming show please. The images btw have not been retouched. Feel free to critique away people!

Thanks everyone.

Camera: Canon Rebel XSi (450D) using the Tamron 18-250mm lens (F/3.5 – 5.6)

Camera Settings:
First Image: F/5.6, 1/20, ISO 800, 50mm, one speedlite at 1/4 power
Second Image: F/5.6, 1/20, ISO 800, 25mm, one speedlite at 1/8 power

Image by Ron Navarrete
Image by Ron Navarrete

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