General Question

irishcurls's avatar

What is best lens to use for natural lighting portraits?

Asked by irishcurls (64points) April 13th, 2008 from iPhone

I use a nikon d70s and do mostly model portfolio and band promo pics u can see examples of my work here:

I was wondering if any one had an idea for the best reasonably priced lens I should buy for these types pictures.

P.s. I have no lighting equipment or flash yet, keep that in mind :)

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8 Answers

Dine's avatar

The best thing is to try a few models

irishcurls's avatar


Reallg for that price that would be awesome. And u think it would be good for the type of pics I take?

Upward's avatar

50mm is the standard choice but a longer lens is what many of the pros are using.
105mm or larger.

irishcurls's avatar

@ upward

Not to be a pain but say I bought the 50mm what would be your personal opinion to what I should buy after that, the 105mm? Or something larger? And if larger what exactly?

Sorry for being a pain LOL.

Upward's avatar

80–200 2.8 would be a good over all choice.

Spargett's avatar

50mm has about the same “visual distortion” as the human eye. The f1.8 will give you amazing flexibility in low light and give your images very cool “high” aperture look.

The fact that its such a simple prime lens (fixed, not zoom) means that there’s just one fat piece of glass, which explains the price point. This also translate to amazing image quality. It’ll prob be the sharpest at f2.0 and higher.

Here is an example of a photo I took with the same type (Canon) of lens. Quite a bit of the portraits on my Flickr were shot with a 50mm f1.8 lens.

gfahey's avatar

I agree about the 50mm 1.8. For about $100 you should have one anyway.

But, I get great results with my 70–200mm f/2.8 VR. Great bokeh and you don’t have to get so close to your subject. Of course, at around $1,700, it’s a bit pricey but, worth every penny.

Having said that, another superb lens is the 85mm f/1.4 Nikon. This is next on my list to purchase. No need for flash with this! So, get the 50mm (the 1.4 50mm is good too) and save for the 70–200VR.

Check out this shot below taken handheld at dusk with the 70–200VR. The out of focus background, like here, is what it’s all about!

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