In my little photography experience I have found that shooting with a zoom lens greatly improves my portrait shoots. The closer I get to my subject, say, using a wide angle lens, the more distortion and stretching of their face I’m going to get. Their nose is going to get enlarged, the sides of their face stretched back – in short, they’re going to look horrible, or at best, like a clown. Using a zoom or higher millimeter lens (a 55mm instead of a 18mm,) I can get a much more accurate portrait of my subject.
Below you can see the difference between lens angle of 18mm and 55mm:
By being able to stand further away from the subject I create a sense of isolation and comfort for the subject, allowing them to act naturally. Getting too close to the model’s face makes them become self-conscious and stiff.
So not only does using a zoom lens, or a lens in the 55mm+ range – help tremendously to create a pleasant portrait of your subject, but it also allows your client to be able to relax and be natural. Ultimately, using the appropriate distance+zoom equals the best portraits you could imagine.
And that’s all, folks. Happy Thanksgiving!
After a late-night talk via Skype, I ended up doing a photoshoot until about 4am, involving a desk lamp, incense, a knife, a lighter, and me. Finally, I threw a few of the images together and created this composite piece.