What is the best canon landscape lens and best canon portrait lens?

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I have a canon digital rebel xt that I received as a Christmas present. I’d like to take professional looking portraits of my baby and family, what’s the best lens for this? I’d also like to buy a good lens for landscape photography. Any suggestions?

If you understand the fundamentals of photography you will know the lens that best fits your needs. For example: If by landscape you mean like a sunset or a sort of mountain/lake scenery you will need a deep depth of field (DOF) and you need to know what DOF means and how you can very easily change that on your XT (you do this by changing the aperture of your lens in the Aperture Priority (Av) or Manual mode (M) mode). Similarly for babies you want a shallow DOF and you do this since the baby is the focus of your picture and you want the background blurred.

But by changing the aperture you also mess with the amount of light that’s entering the camera and that affects the shutter speed etc. For starters I suggest:

1. Get a good photography teacher or a good easy to read photography book. I recommend “Understanding Exposure” it has lots of picture that explains what the terms means visually. You will understanding what makes up an Exposure-Aperture, Shutter and ISO. 3) For beginner portraits the best lens is the $75 EF 50mm f/1.8. This is a prime lens (it does not zoom you zoom in and out with your feet) and it a fast lens (any lens with an aperture more than f/2.8 is called fast, since it usually yields fast shutter speeds) and bigger the aperture f/1.4, f/1.8, f/2.0, f/2.8 even f/4 the shallower the DOF and the more blurred the background is.

2. Once you know that, when you read your Camera manual it will make a lot of sense.

3. For beginner portraits the best lens is the $75 EF 50mm f/1.8. This is a prime lens (it does not zoom you zoom in and out with your feet) and it a fast lens (any lens with an aperture more than f/2.8 is called fast, since it usually yields fast shutter speeds) and bigger the aperture f/1.4, f/1.8, f/2.0, f/2.8 even f/4 the shallower the DOF and the more blurred the background is.

In photography f/2.8 is smaller than f/2, which is smaller than f/1.8. It’s confusing now but will make a lot of sense once you get the fundamentals.

I am assuming your camera came with an EF-S 18-55mm kit lens. This is a moderately Wide Angle Zoom lens and it’s really good for landscapes and close people shots. If you do 1-3 as listed above you will figure out what your favorite focal length is for shooting and what you really need.

I could easily tell you to get a $640 EF-S 10-22 mm lens for wide angle landscapes or a $300 EF 50mm f/1.4 for portraits but you need to know WHY they cost that much and how to use them first to justify the cost. There is a reason why good lens cost a LOT of money and you need to understand photography to understand their cost and how to get the most from them.


~ by emmajohnson888 on November 12, 2008.

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