The true master of a camera is the lenses that attach to the body. Without those ‘windows into the world,’ photographers would never capture an image forever. It’d just be a dark or light photo (depending on film or digital cameras).
But how does a photographer know which lens is best for their preferred subject matter? That’s why I’m here to help! Let’s start with a list of different lenses that I pulled from this blog. I will be using Canon and possibly Nikon lenses as examples later in this post.
- Wide Angle and Super Wide Angle
- Medium Telephoto, Telephoto, and Super Telephoto
The lenses I own are posted in my previous blog post Of Intros and Cameras and you can easily see the difference between both lenses. But now, let me explain each lens in a little more detail.
Wide Angle and Super Wide Angle
A standard wide angle lens sits between 21-35mm while a super wide angle is any lens under 20mm. Wide angle lenses are best used for landscape photography as well as architecture. Most cell phone cameras are wide angle cameras.
Standard lenses usually come with the camera. They tend to sit in the 35-70mm range and a 50mm lens is one of the most common camera lenses photographers purchase. These lenses are great for documentary photos and street photography. They are quick to use since they can remain attached to the camera even when packed away.
Medium Telephoto, Telephoto, and Super Telephoto
First off, these are some of my favorite lenses. A medium telephoto sits from 80-135mm and usually are used in portrait photography. They allow you to take close photos of your subject without being in their face.
A regular telephoto lens has a wider range going from 135-300mm. This lens is perfect for sport photography as well as wildlife photography. My telephoto sits from 80-300mm which is a huge range.
A super telephoto lense goes beyond 300mm. Nikon actually released a camera (the Coolpix P900) last year with a 2000mm lens. It’s insane!
A macro lens is all about close-up shots. Sometimes a standard lens or even a telephoto lens can have macro capabilities. Often times, the macro lens can sit below 1mm. These lenses are best used for still-life of small objects. Perfect for catching tiny details.
This lens is more for amusement than professional images (although I have seen some great professional fisheye photos). The edges of the lens remain like a normal wide angle lens, but toward the center, it becomes magnified to distort the image a little bit. It can actually be a cute thing to use for animals that sniff at the camera like those Dog and Cat brand things from the early 2000s (yeah, I’m just showing my age a little bit).
What kind of lens catches your attention?