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Author Topic: Best lens for baby portraits?  (Read 24315 times)

Sneakers

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Best lens for baby portraits?
« on: February 23, 2013, 01:30:32 PM »
We're expecting a baby soon, and I thought it would be fun to rent a nice lens to take some early portraits. I assume a fast prime L lens makes sense, but what focal length? Any specific lens rental companies to recommend? Thanks.

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Best lens for baby portraits?
« on: February 23, 2013, 01:30:32 PM »

bdunbar79

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Re: Best lens for baby portraits?
« Reply #1 on: February 23, 2013, 01:33:53 PM »
For baby shoots I use a 50 f/1.4 and an 85 f/1.2L II.  In variable situations, you guessed it, I use the 24-70L II lens.  If you rent the 85L, I shot at f/2.2 mostly, because wider it's tough to get side shots of the baby where the whole face is in focus.  Any of the 3 lenses will work.  What body are you using?
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neuroanatomist

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Re: Best lens for baby portraits?
« Reply #2 on: February 23, 2013, 01:35:36 PM »
What camera (sensor size affects that framing you get with a given lens).  If you've got an APS-C body, consider buying the 85mm f/1.8...you'll probably want to take portraits pretty often, so buying is likely better than renting.
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Sneakers

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Re: Best lens for baby portraits?
« Reply #3 on: February 23, 2013, 01:43:03 PM »
I have a T4i (crop sensor) and the 40mm 2.8 currently. I agree that buying makes sense, but I'm so new to photography, experimenting with a couple different lenses might make sense too.

AudioGlenn

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Re: Best lens for baby portraits?
« Reply #4 on: February 23, 2013, 03:23:09 PM »
congratulations on the new addition to your family!

I actually like the 35L as a standard/wide-ish prime.  It focuses relatively close and gives a shallow enough DOF but isn't as hard to use as the 50L or 85L.  I know some people might suggest the new sigma 35mm instead (and I'm not opposed to that either).  That 85mm 1.8 does 95% of what the L does so if that is more within your budget, I think thats a great recommendation too for the tight portrait shot.

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Menace

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Re: Best lens for baby portraits?
« Reply #5 on: February 23, 2013, 03:34:31 PM »
On your T4i, the EF85 1.8 will take superb portraits and you still have the EF40 when you need to go wider.

Also, don't forget good old EF50 1.4 - lovely little lens :)

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pdirestajr

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Re: Best lens for baby portraits?
« Reply #6 on: February 23, 2013, 03:36:16 PM »
A macro lens is also a really good choice when it comes to babies. You can then get up close to take small detail shots of hands, feet, lips, eyelashes, etc.
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Re: Best lens for baby portraits?
« Reply #6 on: February 23, 2013, 03:36:16 PM »

Dick

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Re: Best lens for baby portraits?
« Reply #7 on: February 23, 2013, 03:44:42 PM »
A good prime. I'd choose a 35mm 1.4. Some people seem to suggest a 50mm, but at least I have not liked 50mm indoors since there will be moments when there just isn't enough room. Wider than 35mm will already mess up proportion.
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bwfishing

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Re: Best lens for baby portraits?
« Reply #8 on: February 23, 2013, 04:12:05 PM »
Hey Sneakers Congrats on the new baby!

I hope everyone is happy and healthy. WOW! some spot on advice already, feel like +1 everyone who already posted. The lighting in hospitals is not usually good and flash may not be good for the babies eyes or mood. So getting a lens that will handle low light is a great idea. Also newborns are tiny so you'll need to get in close (remember to get some macro shots of the hands and feet). Please update us on the model camera you have or would like to rent. (Oops! I see you already responded T4i (crop sensor)) I love primes too!(40mm 2.8f) nice little lens, and a great zoom like the Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM is a winner for sure even though it's not a prime. 

I rent from a local camera store, so I would recommend searching online to find out if you have one around your area. It cost $35 day to rent a $2,000.00 85mm 1.2 L lens for example. Also no shipping cost if you use a local camera place.

If you have not already check out the online lensrental.com site for lenses too. The same 85mm 1.2 L cost $69 to rent for 5 days, but you should also figure in shipping and insurance as well.

If you going to buy a lens the Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Medium Telephoto Lens is an afforable extraordinary lens. It maybe a little too long of a lens on a T4i (crop sensor). You can also rent a full frame body or you may want to also try using extension tube like a 12mm to enable the your lens to focus more closely than its minimal focusing distance. Kenko makes some pretty good ones and can rent them as well.  It is really good on my T2i and Great on the 5D Mark II. As the baby gets older and faster this lens will be on your camera all the time. As a new born you might also look at getting a monopod or tripod to allow for slower shutter speeds.

For newborns maybe think about getting a few props as they tend to sleep a good deal and you can still get some creative shots like the one in the link below...

prop idea
http://www.amazon.com/gp/customer-media/permalink/mo25X5G38P0T3UL/B002HWRGBA/ref=cm_ciu_images_pl_link


Here is the link to a online rental company..
http://www.lensrentals.com/rent/canon/lenses

Lot of helpful videos online too.. Here is an example. She uses a 5D Mark II and a 50mm 2.5 macro lens.
Newborn Photo Techniques & Strategies, Part 1, Julie Klaasmeyer, Photovisionvideo
Newborn Photo Techniques & Strategies, Part 1, Julie Klaasmeyer, Photovisionvideo

« Last Edit: February 25, 2013, 11:43:58 AM by bwfishing »

elflord

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Re: Best lens for baby portraits?
« Reply #9 on: February 23, 2013, 04:19:46 PM »
We're expecting a baby soon, and I thought it would be fun to rent a nice lens to take some early portraits. I assume a fast prime L lens makes sense, but what focal length? Any specific lens rental companies to recommend? Thanks.

The 50mm f/1.4 is a great baby photo lens. You can get very tightly framed shots with this lens on a crop.

As others pointed out, macro is a good choice especially for new born photos. Even in non-macro lenses, minimum focus distance is worth paying attention to. The new 35mm f/2 IS does very well in this regard (focuses closer than 1ft)

It can be fun to play around with wide angle shots (e.g. about 24mm or less on crop) but you can do that with the kit zoom.

pwp

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Re: Best lens for baby portraits?
« Reply #10 on: February 23, 2013, 05:12:18 PM »
We're expecting a baby soon, and I thought it would be fun to rent a nice lens to take some early portraits...
Lens Baby...http://lensbaby.com/
Or iPhone 4s. Then deliver the images/videos straight out to the anxious grandparents. They'll love you for it.

-PW
« Last Edit: February 23, 2013, 05:14:06 PM by pwp »

Eli

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Re: Best lens for baby portraits?
« Reply #11 on: February 23, 2013, 05:49:21 PM »
I'd rent the Zeiss 50 f2 Makro; don't need AF for baby portraits, large aperture, super sharp, super punchy colours and contrast, 80mm focal length equivalent on your camera, and it's a macro (sort've) lens so it can focus much closer if you were planning to do like those feet shots or hands holding onto a finger.. Plus it's loads of fun to play with a Zeiss :)

Harry Muff

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Re: Best lens for baby portraits?
« Reply #12 on: February 23, 2013, 06:03:59 PM »
EF 100 2.8L IS


Congratulations on the baby.
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Re: Best lens for baby portraits?
« Reply #12 on: February 23, 2013, 06:03:59 PM »

SJ

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Re: Best lens for baby portraits?
« Reply #13 on: February 23, 2013, 06:05:35 PM »
Congrats friend 8)

Try 24-70II, or 50mm 1.8 / 1.4

bdunbar79

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Re: Best lens for baby portraits?
« Reply #14 on: February 23, 2013, 06:14:03 PM »
EF 100 2.8L IS


Congratulations on the baby.

He has a crop body (1.6x).  160mm makes no sense for baby portraits.
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Re: Best lens for baby portraits?
« Reply #14 on: February 23, 2013, 06:14:03 PM »