Need Help Choosing a Lens

sunny16

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oldhippy

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Nikon 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G ED IF AF-S VR Nikkor
This lens is great for now, and if you go to FX later, it works on full frame 100%
 

goodguy

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Great out doors shots and good portraits.
Not sure if this goes together.
I will assume you are tight on cash so a great portraits lens is 50mm 1.8G and its a good lens for outdoors and of course night photography but 50mm is a bit limiting outside.
For outside you can get a zoom lens like the 18-105mm VR or 24-85mm VR
If you want a more serious tele lens then the 70-300mm VR is a fantastic lens for outdoors but I personaly dont like using it for portraits.
I bought my 50mm 1.8G for 200$ new and my 70-300mm VR bought used for 280$

I use my 50mm for portraits, close (but not macro) shots and night photography.
My 70-300mm I use when outside its a very sharp lens and I just love using it.
The 24-85mm VR or the 18-105mm VR are good lens that will probably do most of what you night and will be your main lenses, they are good both for indoor and outdoor and you can do portraits with them even though the 50mm is by far better for this because of its F1.8 open apature which gives great Bokeh in portraits.
 

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I am new to photography. I have a Nikon D5100 and want a lens that will take the best outdoor photo's as well as great "eye pop" shots for portraits. Like this:

View attachment 48858

With my camera:
Which lens works best for bright outdoor portraits?

I second the 50mm f1.8G. It's a phenomenal lens for $200, and will give you the style of photos your looking for. The photo you posted was probably taken on a fifty, but on a full frame sensor. You aren't likely to get quite of a DoF as this shot, especially not with a zoom (excepting the new Sigma 18-35 f1.8). The "eye pop" is also just heavily processed. You can do it in Lightroom with the adjustment brush by cranking the clarity, contrast and sharpness and mask in just the eyes. Actions like Totally Rad Actions also have pop actions that you can paint in (Select-O-Pop is what I use).
 
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sunny16

sunny16

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I looked at both the 85mm 1.4 and the 70-300mm lens. Both come recommended but the 85mm is really expensive.

Another question would be, if I gear up my d5100 with some really good lenses as you all have mentioned, will I be able to produce high quality photo's to get my clientele up? Or is the d5100 just not going to preform well enough for business? I can't afford an expensive body right off. Any suggestions?
 

goodguy

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Nikon D5100 is an excellent camera and in the right hands can produce pictures that will leave you breathless.
The potential to make good pics is definitly there and with the right lens I see no reason why you cant get very good results with it.
On the other hand it really comes down to the photographer, equipment is one thing but the real problem is with the operator, how good he/she really is.
Learning how to get a really good and professional picture is not about the equipment but is more a matter of tallent and experience.
Give a pro a modern cell phone and give me the best camera in the world with the best equipment in the world and still a good pro will make my pictures look dull and boring.

So yes your camera with few nice lenses will be able to make very, very good pictures but at the end of the day it really is about you, your talent and experience to know really how to use well the camera and get that shot.

Good luck
 

SCraig

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Nikon D5100 is an excellent camera and in the right hands can produce pictures that will leave you breathless.
The potential to make good pics is definitly there and with the right lens I see no reason why you cant get very good results with it.
On the other hand it really comes down to the photographer, equipment is one thing but the real problem is with the operator, how good he/she really is.
Learning how to get a really good and professional picture is not about the equipment but is more a matter of tallent and experience.
Give a pro a modern cell phone and give me the best camera in the world with the best equipment in the world and still a good pro will make my pictures look dull and boring.

So yes your camera with few nice lenses will be able to make very, very good pictures but at the end of the day it really is about you, your talent and experience to know really how to use well the camera and get that shot.

Good luck

Ever heard the old adage "You can't make a silk purse from a sow's ear"?

It takes both; a talented photographer with good equipment. Put a cell phone camera in the hands of a true professional photographer (as opposed to a 90-Day-Wonder) and the best equipment made in the hands of most of us around here and you will get a better COMPOSED image from the cell phone and a better EXPOSED and FOCUSED image from the rest of us. A bad camera with a bad lens is always a bad camera with a bad lens, and no matter what you do or who you put behind it you will still get poorly exposed and focused images.

The D5100 is a decent camera but it isn't a professional camera. It is certainly capable of exceptional photographs in the right hands, but they MUST be experienced and knowledgeable hands. The OP has indicated that they are "New to photography" and are already concerned about trying to "get my clientele up". My suggestion would be to stop worrying about equipment and worry about the photographer for a while. If you are truly new to photography then you have not even come close to reaching the limits of whatever body or lens is presently in use. Use what you have and when you reach the limits of a lens or body you will know, and you will know what direction you need to go.
 

goodguy

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Ever heard the old adage "You can't make a silk purse from a sow's ear"?

It takes both; a talented photographer with good equipment. Put a cell phone camera in the hands of a true professional photographer (as opposed to a 90-Day-Wonder) and the best equipment made in the hands of most of us around here and you will get a better COMPOSED image from the cell phone and a better EXPOSED and FOCUSED image from the rest of us. A bad camera with a bad lens is always a bad camera with a bad lens, and no matter what you do or who you put behind it you will still get poorly exposed and focused images.

The D5100 is a decent camera but it isn't a professional camera. It is certainly capable of exceptional photographs in the right hands, but they MUST be experienced and knowledgeable hands. The OP has indicated that they are "New to photography" and are already concerned about trying to "get my clientele up". My suggestion would be to stop worrying about equipment and worry about the photographer for a while. If you are truly new to photography then you have not even come close to reaching the limits of whatever body or lens is presently in use. Use what you have and when you reach the limits of a lens or body you will know, and you will know what direction you need to go.

Thats exactly what I was trying to say but you said it in a much better way.
D5100 is not a pro camera but still when used correctly can produce amazing pictures.
Being newbie myself I am more focused at learning and improving my own skills and knowladge.
Equipment is secondary, whats the point of having the best equipment in the world without the knowlesge of how to make good use of it, taking a shoot is much more then just look through the view finder and press the shutter release botton.

Ohhh I still have such a long way to go :(
But I am enjoying the learning process :)

And lest thing, no I never heard this saying "You can't make a silk purse from a sow's ear", sadly English is my second language being an immigrant in Canada so I am not exactly sure what this saying means.
 
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sunny16

sunny16

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Nikon D5100 is an excellent camera and in the right hands can produce pictures that will leave you breathless.
The potential to make good pics is definitly there and with the right lens I see no reason why you cant get very good results with it.
On the other hand it really comes down to the photographer, equipment is one thing but the real problem is with the operator, how good he/she really is.
Learning how to get a really good and professional picture is not about the equipment but is more a matter of tallent and experience.
Give a pro a modern cell phone and give me the best camera in the world with the best equipment in the world and still a good pro will make my pictures look dull and boring.

So yes your camera with few nice lenses will be able to make very, very good pictures but at the end of the day it really is about you, your talent and experience to know really how to use well the camera and get that shot.

Good luck

Ever heard the old adage "You can't make a silk purse from a sow's ear"?

It takes both; a talented photographer with good equipment. Put a cell phone camera in the hands of a true professional photographer (as opposed to a 90-Day-Wonder) and the best equipment made in the hands of most of us around here and you will get a better COMPOSED image from the cell phone and a better EXPOSED and FOCUSED image from the rest of us. A bad camera with a bad lens is always a bad camera with a bad lens, and no matter what you do or who you put behind it you will still get poorly exposed and focused images.

The D5100 is a decent camera but it isn't a professional camera. It is certainly capable of exceptional photographs in the right hands, but they MUST be experienced and knowledgeable hands. The OP has indicated that they are "New to photography" and are already concerned about trying to "get my clientele up". My suggestion would be to stop worrying about equipment and worry about the photographer for a while. If you are truly new to photography then you have not even come close to reaching the limits of whatever body or lens is presently in use. Use what you have and when you reach the limits of a lens or body you will know, and you will know what direction you need to go.


I suppose I was a bit misleading when I said I am new to photography. Allow me to edit my statement...

I have taken pictures for years. Mostly with a point and shoot 35mm camera, then later with my Android phone. I am experienced in several photo editing apps and software. I have been told I have a great eye and I believe I do as well. I enjoy it and I actually think I am pretty good at selecting a great shot. When I said new, I meant that I am new to using anything other than a point and shoot camera or mobile device for images. Because I feel I have a natural eye and have a passion for photography, I wanted to try my hand at some freelance work. Family portraits etc...beginning as a natural light photographer. "New" means, I am new to the equipment side of it all.
So sorry for the misunderstanding. I should have been more clear.

With all of that said, does this change anything?
 
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sunny16

sunny16

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$barefeet2.jpg$beach blues.jpg$beach blues2 .jpg$fishing2.jpg$**** kicker.jpg

The above are samples of some of the shots I have taken with my phone and tweaked with various editing programs. I think, and correct me if I am off here, but I think I do okay. I am just hoping that if I can learn my way around a good DSLR then I can produce some better, higher quality images. What do you think? Be honest...
 

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Just about any lens Nikon makes will work. Please read my blog post for ideas on how to make a lens decision. Nobody can tell you exactly. You have to pick a tool that serves your vision, like a carpenter picks a tool for his job. Joel Nisleit Photography | What Lens Should You Buy?
 

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Hi. Newbe here as well. D90 user. Considering a Nikkor 24mm 2.8D AF lens - prefer to stick with Nikkor.... Objective is for good quality wide angle lens - mainly landscapes. Light weight. Reasonable cost. To carry when hiking outdoors. Appreciate loss of flexibility due to no zoom but weight and costs is a large consideration. Advice much appreciated. I travel on a motorbike so packing space also limited.
Thanks

Just read your blog and very informative. As you say difficult to give precise advise without budget and vision. I'm careful to spend to much as my photography is mainly recreational for myself and family but can stretch the budget a bit if needed. Vision is more difficult. Would like to take "nice" pictures that show what I see but I guess that statement is as wide as any...:sillysmi:

Look forward to your thoughts
 
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CameraClicker

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I am new to photography. I have a Nikon D5100 and want a lens that will take the best outdoor photo's as well as great "eye pop" shots for portraits. Like these:

http://paintthemoon.net/blog/2012/02/bag-annie-manning-paint-moon-photography-photoshop-actions/

With my camera:
Which lens works best for bright outdoor portraits?

The link you provided tells which lens was used for many of the shots. A wide range of lenses was used. I notice that understanding the scene and the light was probably more important than the lens, although a fast prime would be helpful to get the shallow DOF.
 

CameraClicker

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Hi. Newbe here as well. D90 user. Considering a Nikkor 24mm 2.8D AF lens - prefer to stick with Nikkor.... Objective is for good quality wide angle lens - mainly landscapes. Light weight. Reasonable cost. To carry when hiking outdoors. Appreciate loss of flexibility due to no zoom but weight and costs is a large consideration. Advice much appreciated. I travel on a motorbike so packing space also limited.
Thanks

Just read your blog and very informative. As you say difficult to give precise advise without budget and vision. I'm careful to spend to much as my photography is mainly recreational for myself and family but can stretch the budget a bit if needed. Vision is more difficult. Would like to take "nice" pictures that show what I see but I guess that statement is as wide as any...:sillysmi:

Look forward to your thoughts

Is a D90 full frame? 24 mm on a crop body is not very wide. What kit lens did you get with your camera? Usually that is a very light 18-55 zoom. For trips, I take a light APS-C body with a Sigma 18-250 zoom and a Sigma 10-20 zoom.
 

odagled

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Sunny16, you're still in the beginning stages of learning photography. If you truly have the passion the passion then you'll continue learning and gaining experience. Forget about gear and work on your own skills. DSLR is whole new ball game compared with a camera phone. When it comes to your photos, I just have to say, less is more. They are too edited for my own tastes. The 2nd one is probably the best though. The subject is in focus, she's in a good pose, (although more of her face would've been nice) and I like the rim light on her hair. The others are kinda just blah. Like I said, work on your skills first!
 

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