Portrait advice

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by mgblunt, Oct 30, 2015.

  1. mgblunt

    mgblunt No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I have a
    Nikon D3200
    18mm-55mm kit lens
    55mm -200mm kit lens
    35mm prime lense

    Which one of these lenses would you choose for indoor portraits?


     
  2. Designer

    Designer Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I think it's going to depend on how much space you have available. If it's a very small room, you might have to use wider than 55mm, but if it's a longer room, then you can use the longer lens.
     
  3. goodguy

    goodguy Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    None of these lenses really is a first choice lens for portraits.
    35mm will be fast enough for the lower light conditions in the house and will give you a nice bokeh but its wide and will cause some distortion to the face especially if you will do head shot.
    2 options I would consider is if you have enough space in the house put camera on tripod and use the 55-200mm with a slower shutter speed
    Another option is to use a flash if you have one preferably off camera flash or on camera flash and bounce the light.

    This is why I always recommend the Nikon 50mm 1.8G for people with crop sensor cameras, its a good general use lens and excellent portrait as the focal on the APS-C is 75mm
     
  4. mgblunt

    mgblunt No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The 50mm is going to be my next lens but I have a family gathering and they would like their portraits done so I have to use what I have. I do have a speed light with a tripod and a bounce umbrella I have plenty of room so what focal length would you recommend with the 55-200 lens?
     
  5. jaomul

    jaomul Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Any focal length on the 55-200 will be ok on that lens. If I was doing a single head shot and had enough room I would try go for 70-100mm just to remove any chance of perspective distortion, but to be fair your position to get a head shot even at 55mm should really make the distortion pretty much not noticeable in real world photos
     
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  6. goodguy

    goodguy Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I think "Jaomul" answered what I thought but I will add dont think there is a specific focal number for "proper" results because there isnt.
    Yes there are general Rule Of Thumb to consider but never limit yourself to them.
    Also a lot is about personal preference and taste.
    Photography is in some ways a form of art thus its very subjective.
     
  7. Dao

    Dao No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Personally, I like to use longer focal length. So I agree Designer, I will choose a longer focal length that works with the space. Your lenses are fine. Just pick one with the desire focal length and shoot at the sweet spot of the lens (i.e. f/5.6 or f/8)

    Are you going to use artificial light? If not, you may need to find out what light source is available in that room. (i.e. Big window, Big door opening in garage). Light is more important.

    Edit: Just noticed you said you have a flash and a umbrella. I think all you need is find out the best way to use that. If you have time, you may also take a look at some DYI diffusion panel. How to use a reflector(s) to bounce some lights back to the subject.
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2015
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  8. jcdeboever

    jcdeboever TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    Personally, I have used 35 & 50mm both and if you get to close to face, the 35mm will distort. I think the 50mm is a tad sharper. With flash both kit lens work fine. However, if your looking for a strict portrait lens, the 85mm 1.8 is a great choice and it can go with you if you upgrade to an FX body.
    Check out what I found on B&H Photo Video Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 85mm f/1.8G Lens 2201 B&H Photo Video


    Sent from my XT1254 using Tapatalk
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2015
  9. mgblunt

    mgblunt No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Thanks everyone for your help I truly appreciate it!
     

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