I know this subject comes up a lot, but any comments on what the absolute ‘best’ lens for outdoor portraits would be? I recently picked up the 24-70 MKII, and while its great optically, I find that its not long enough, and does not have a wide enough aperture to create that ‘dreamy’ bokeh that people tend to like for portraits (unless I have a good amount of distance between the subject and background of course). I also have the 50mm 1.4, but I find that in order to really blow out the background, I have to stop down lower than I really want to, to get the desired effect (ie DOF is too narrow for the subject, and part of the subject is soft and/or out of focus). What I’d basically like to be able to create more consistently, are portraits with really nice bokeh, yet the subject is fully in focus, sharp, and ‘pops’ from the background.
Not ruling out that this could be a technique issue either.
I’ve rented the 70-200 2.8II a few times when hired for shoots where I needed the extra reach, and although I liked the versatility of it, it’s a rather huge lens that I’m not sure if it’s really something I’d reach for frequently enough to justify the price (would probably use it more frequently if I owned it though). I’ve handled the F4 IS before, and it’s a good size, but am not sure how much I’d miss the extra stop (both for DOF and low light ability).
Would an 85mm or 100mm prime be a better choice? Not sure how often I really need the long end of the telephoto zooms, but this might be a function of not using one regularly.