Monday, May 31, 2010

No rain, just wind!


So after getting my new camera I was dying to get out and shoot. Really excited about using the full-frame now since all of my old lenses will have different perspectives. Which brings up a new (and of course expensive) dilemma: I need some new lenses to fill in the gaps in focal lengths!

What I am really lacking now is a standard prime lens (like a 50 mm) and a good "walk-around" zoom (something like a 24-70 mm). Before plunking down a lot of cash on a new lens, I thought it would be a good idea to rent some lenses to see if they're a good fit for me. Adorama Camera has a really good rental shop, and the prices are great. It's like $25 bucks to rent a lens from Friday to Monday...way cheaper than buying a lens you're not sure you really like or need!

So I tried out the Canon 17-40 mm f/4L to see how I like the wide-angle action. Found Julie here on short notice and we were actually planning for rain. Weather reports said 80% chance of rain and the sky looked gloomy. I thought "why not?" The new camera and lens are weather-sealed...should be fun to shoot in some light rain. Well, instead of rain we got beautiful bright blue skies...and WIND! Like dust clouds, hard to walk in, can barely open your eyes wind! At one point a roofing tile actually blew off a building into the street! Ridiculous!

I'll just skip to the conclusions! Great lens overall, color and sharpness even wide open are outstanding, and built like a tank. However, for me it was just too wide, and I found myself pretty much always zooming it up to at least 35 mm. Plus there is a lot of distortion when you get up close with a full-frame camera and a wide-angle lens. So it's a nice lens, but just not for me.

Took a few with my old 85 mm f/1.8 too...

Needless to say, strong winds are pretty much the pits when it comes to shooting outside. You and the model are constantly blinking, hair and clothes are blowing everywhere, and forget about setting up a light stand that someone is not holding on to! Still, by looking for a little shelter from the wind the shoot can be salvaged. Doorways, hallways, use anything you can find!

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