View Full Version : Im Very New to photography and need help.
20th of November 2008 (Thu), 13:05
Right then lol, Well I need advice on choosing a lens, I shoot Animal Photography mainly dogs as I snap them at dog shows, and my lense is rubbish its the bog standard canon lense that comes with the E0S 400D and I was thinking of upgrading my lense to the Sigma 70-300 mm f4.56 DG Macro Tele-zoom lens firstly because the Zoom is great and secondly its in my price budget at the moment.
Any advice or suggestions on a more practical lens for the photograpy I do would be Greatful
Many Thanks Zina x
20th of November 2008 (Thu), 13:09
Welcome, Zina, you are in the best place to help you learn to use your camera. Admittedly the kit lens isn't much good but throwing money at the problem isn't usually the best solution. Perhaps share with us some of the images you have taken so far so we can help you some more.
20th of November 2008 (Thu), 13:14
ok thank you I am getting used to forums too so i will try and show share some photo's I have snapped, the main problem is distance however due to the dogs being in a ring and my camera does not reach that far. lol
20th of November 2008 (Thu), 14:16
The first photo is the usually close up photo's that people ask for and they are easy to take with the standard lens I have but the second photo of the darker bitch was taken at full zoom and it is rubbish its all blurred and just is not the quality id like it to be,
24th of November 2008 (Mon), 09:28
24th of November 2008 (Mon), 09:59
While the Sigma 70-300 is a good lens, it is just not fast enough for what you want to do with it. To shoot in an arena you will probably (depending on the lighting) at least at iso 1600 at f/2.8 and at a minimum of the length of the lens, meaning you if your lens is a 200mm you need to shoot at 1/250th. This isn't sports, but the dogs are still probably moving so even a faster shutter speed is recommended. All this leads to you needing a lens that is at least an f/2.8, and IS lens would be nice, but again if your subjects move the IS is just so much extra money spend and weight. I'm sure that using a flash would be a big no no at a dog show, but if you can use one you should balance it with the ambient light, you would still want an f/2.8 lens. Not knowing the distances you would be working at a 70-200mm f/2.8 might be fine, if you need longer than that a flash, even a 580 EX II might not have enough reach.
24th of November 2008 (Mon), 10:03
the Sigma 70-200 f/2.8 is a fine lens, and very affordable compared to the canon version. (roughly half the cost)
I definitely would stick with a f/2.8 lens, regardless of manufacturer. (other would disagree with me and say only buy canon, but some of us live in the real world and have to buy what we can afford)
24th of November 2008 (Mon), 12:59
Thanks for the help, I was speaking to a Canine Photographer at a show yesterday and he recommended a 18-200mm lens would be the best what do you think????
24th of November 2008 (Mon), 13:10
Well your 18-200mm is a Nikon photographer talking (we don't talk to those guys here :cool:) Canon doesn't have a zoom in that range. Another dito on the Sigma 70-200 2.8 being a good option. My real point for posting is to recomend two sites that have unbiased lens reviews. I do all my lens research here http://www.photozone.de/reviews and on Fred Miranda http://www.fredmiranda.com/reviews/ Hope it helps.
24th of November 2008 (Mon), 13:24
Thank you and omg your physcic lol, he is a nikon man! lmao, its only nikon guys that photograph our shows in wales see. So its a definate 70-200 lens. Thanks Guys! =]
24th of November 2008 (Mon), 13:38
There are a few other options that could work for you. Canon makes a 200mm f/2.8 that would be good for your zoom shoots. But then when you need another lens for your closeups, requiring you to have to swap lenses. But I am sure you could pick one of these up used cheap since they are an older lens. Also the Canon 70-200 f/4 IS is a very sharp lens with IS (Image Stabilization) you just wont get the extra stop of light that the 2.8 will give you. But its smaller, lighter, and cheaper. Just some other thoughts for you. The 2.8's are the obvious best but most anything will be better then the kit lens.
24th of November 2008 (Mon), 13:42
Yea i was just looking on a website now and i've found a 18-200mm lens from canon
I'm just soo confused on what to get it seems like no one knows what is the best lens ideally for shooting distance on the dogs and close ups aswell. its so confusing.. :S
24th of November 2008 (Mon), 14:25
I stand corrected, Canon does have a 18-200, *New* Sorry, it is news to me. I just know a few Nikon guys that like there 18-200. Read the review on it though, the optics are not all that great but the range it covers may be worth the sacrafice in resolution. It's all about what you can afford. You can't go wrong on the 70-200 just so long as you aren't trying to get group shots in tight spaces. You can always step back if 70mm is to long. I love my 70-200 f/4 it hardly leaves my camera.
24th of November 2008 (Mon), 14:38
hehe fair enough we all learn something new everyday , yea he said it would be practical but maybe he did not realise that I want to go into it professionally but at the end of the day i am still only a beginner, I guess I have a lot to learn about it all =/
24th of November 2008 (Mon), 17:35
The Canon 18-200 looks like a good range, but it is still only 3.5 - 5.6 making it slow for indoor or low light work. Remember IS only works on your end, if the subject moves it doesn't help a bit.
Unfortunately for what you want to do there aren't many short cuts.
25th of November 2008 (Tue), 13:23
whats about the Sigma 28-300mm lens??
25th of November 2008 (Tue), 13:57
I have but the second photo of the darker bitch was taken at full zoom and it is rubbish its all blurred and just is not the quality id like it to be,
The second photo is blurred due to user error, not the lens. There is evident hand-shake blur, which happens when you're using insufficient shutter speeds. What ISO speed were you on? The point I'm trying to make is, if your shutter speeds are too slow, it doesn't matter if your lens is $200 or $2000. It's still gonna be blurred.
Image Stabilization helps alot here. Generally for indoors, the light will be relatively poor. You want to be avoiding high-zooming whenever possible.
25th of November 2008 (Tue), 14:02
whats about the Sigma 28-300mm lens??
Like Jack already mentioned, the lenses you're picking are still 'slow'. This means they have a relatively small maximum aperture setting. In Layman's terms, it won't help you much over your current telephoto lens.
You need to look towards 'faster' lenses. So lenses which have that f- number in the lens name as small as possible. As an example, f/2.8 is 'faster' than f/3.5-5.6.
Furthermore, you would want lenses which have IS in order to compensate for image blur caused by handshake (what ruined that second photo in the original post). The one caveat is that it doesn't help for action shots. The only solution to that is simply high shutter speeds (so a 'fast' lens would be the solution here).
Everything here points towards something like a 70-200 f/2.8 IS, but this lens doesn't come cheap. Other good alternatives include the Canon 70-300 IS or the Sigma 70-200 (non-IS).
But in the end, you need to get away from superzoom lenses. Forget about lenses which zoom alot. They're convenient, but the tradeoff is lower image quality and being slower (with regards to aperture).
26th of November 2008 (Wed), 05:06
with the 70-200mm i wont be able to get as close as I could with a 18 or even a 28, so the smaller the f number the better. thanks
26th of November 2008 (Wed), 06:53
I good set of lenses that will cover most of what you want would be the Tamron 17-55mm f/2.8 XR Di II and the Sigma APO 50-150mm f/2.8 II EX. These are excellent lenses at reasonable prices.
29th of November 2008 (Sat), 12:33
Originally Posted by Collin85 What ISO speed were you on?
I was using an ISO speed of 1600 the fastest ISO my camera does.
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