#8 Portrait Lens Upgrade September 2011

May 13, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

More delicious creamy boh-kayyyyyyyy

My interest in photography had really fired up at this point in time and I even dreamt about taking photos in wild exotic landscapes with my trusty Canon EOS 550D (although I must admit that the lens I used in my dream was different to the kit lens I was using at the time and it was somehow much much better). 

After being massively immersed by the bokeh offered by the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8, naturally I continued with the photography forums reading to check out what other photographers felt were the must haves. Despite previous error in the judgement of purchasing the Nifty-Fifty (50mm lens), I read that the 85mm offered even greater value and creamier bokeh. I placed an order for the Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 against better judgement. At this time I was slightly more comfortable with photographing people so I was looking for a portrait lens. 

I was surprised how heavy the Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 lens felt in my hands. It made me look really pro when I popped on the lens hood (compared to the kit lens which were long and skinny). However, that was the end of the yay moment and the start of new struggles. I felt a slight pain as soon as I lifted the camera to my eye because I hadn’t appreciated that this 85mm is actually the equivalent of 136mm with fairly long minimal focus distance. This means I was not able to focus on anything in my room other than long leggies in the corner of my ceiling. That said, when you have minimal skills, you must at least look good to compensate! Since the arrival of the 85mm lens, I noticed that I have been using the Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS kit lens much less frequently, which means subconsciously I had repurposed the 85mm lens to justify the poor purchase decision. Sure enough, the first set of kit lens was sold off really cheaply soon after.

Take away message #1: Don’t ‘buy’ into hype since you are the one paying for it.
Take away message #2: The role of kit lens in my opinion is to let you experience which focal lengths suits your style, cheaply. You should get rid of it as soon as possible so you can specialise and progress with your approach of art from your own perspective. 


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