I got an e-mail from a reader, asking for more information about focal length. What is it? How does it affect my photo? When do I use what length?
As my English is a bit off when it comes to those terms, I did what any sane woman does. I googled. And I came across an excellent article that explains the basics so well hat I don’t need to!
All I need to do is translate into dog photography 🙂
So we took two lenses, one 17-70 and one 75-300, and took some photos, the Princess and I. I apologise in advance for the lack of originality and aesthetic quality…Thes photos only purpose is to show what happens when you zoom in and out.
I started with tele 300mm and ended with wide angle 17mm. Aperture is set at f/5,6, because that is the largest one I have on my 300mm (I don’t have a super expensive telelens). I wanted to show what happens to the photo even if I move my feet to keep her the same size in the frame.
Now scroll up and compare the photos. Quite a difference!
Next I stayed in “roughly) the same place and zoomed in.
Ask 10 photographers what focal length is the best, and you get 10 different replies. We like different styles, and we work differently to get the same effect. It all depends on what you want to see in your photo!
But I really do think that you should think about the effect that the focal length has on the photo. Don’t just zoom in because the dog is far away, zoom in because you want that effect! Otherwise use your feet and get closer to the dog.
So…what do I use, and why?
Almost never tele. Why? Because I can’t hold it steady. It’s a training thing, I know, and maybe I will change my mind. But it’n not JUST that, I often like to bring in the background in my photos, and I like to be closer to the dog and feel more connected. I use 50mm, 35mm, and 17mm, depending on what style I want. Portrait? 50mm. A bit of environment? 35mm. A funny photo? 17mm.