The Nikkor 85mm f/1.8 Portrait Lens
Choosing the right portrait lens can be a daunting task, especially when you have to decide between popular choices like the 50mm, 85mm, and 105mm lenses. Each lens has its own strengths and weaknesses, so it's important to consider your shooting style, subject, and intended use when making your decision.
The 50mm lens is a great all-around lens that can be used for a variety of portrait photography styles. It's a standard focal length that is versatile and easy to use, making it a popular choice for beginners and professionals alike. The 50mm lens is also relatively lightweight and affordable, which makes it a good option for those on a budget. The wide aperture of f/1.8 or f/1.4 allows for a shallow depth of field, which can help your subject stand out from the background. However, the 50mm lens can distort facial features if you get too close to your subject, which is something to keep in mind when shooting portraits.
The 85mm lens is a popular choice for portrait photographers because it produces a flattering perspective that minimizes distortion. It's great for capturing headshots and other close-up portraits. The wide maximum aperture of f/1.8 or f/1.4 also allows for a shallow depth of field, which creates a pleasing background blur. The 85mm lens is a bit heavier than the 50mm, but still relatively lightweight and easy to handle. The main downside to the 85mm lens is that it can be more expensive than the 50mm, and may not be as versatile for other types of photography.
The 105mm lens is a telephoto lens that is ideal for capturing portraits from a distance. It produces a flattering perspective that minimizes distortion, and the wide maximum aperture of f/1.8 or f/2 allows for a shallow depth of field. The 105mm lens is also great for capturing detail shots and full-body portraits. However, the lens is heavier and more expensive than both the 50mm and 85mm lenses, which may make it less practical for some photographers.
Ultimately, the choice between the 50mm, 85mm, and 105mm lenses will depend on your shooting style, subject, and intended use. If you're just starting out with portrait photography, the 50mm lens is a great all-around lens that won't break the bank. If you're looking for a lens that is specifically designed for portraits, the 85mm lens is a popular choice that produces a flattering perspective. If you need to capture portraits from a distance or want to capture a lot of detail in your shots, the 105mm lens may be the right choice for you.
The Nikkor 85mm f/1.8 lens is a popular choice for portrait photographers, and was my choice for my first portrait specific lens for good reason. With its wide maximum aperture of f/1.8, this lens is able to produce beautiful, shallow depth of field that helps subjects stand out against a blurred background. In this blog post, we'll take a closer look at the Nikkor 85mm f/1.8 lens and explore its features, benefits, and tips for getting the most out of this lens.
The Nikkor 85mm f/1.8 lens is a prime lens, meaning it has a fixed focal length of 85mm. This makes it a popular choice for portrait photography, as the 85mm focal length is ideal for capturing flattering head and shoulder shots. The lens has a maximum aperture of f/1.8, which allows for a lot of light to enter the camera and produces a shallow depth of field. The lens also has a Silent Wave Motor (SWM) which makes for fast and quiet autofocus, and a minimum focusing distance of 0.8m.
One of the main benefits of the Nikkor 85mm f/1.8 lens is its ability to produce stunning portraits with a blurred background. The wide aperture allows for a shallow depth of field, which can create a dreamy, ethereal look to your photos. Additionally, the lens is relatively lightweight and compact, making it easy to carry around with you for shoots. The fast autofocus system is also a plus, as it helps you quickly and accurately capture your subject in focus.
Tips for Using the Nikkor 85mm f/1.8 Lens:
- Experiment with different apertures: While the wide aperture of f/1.8 is great for creating a shallow depth of field, don't be afraid to experiment with different apertures. Stopping down the aperture can help you achieve sharper images and more depth of field, which can be useful in certain situations.
- Watch your shutter speed: When shooting with a wide aperture, it's important to ensure that your shutter speed is fast enough to avoid camera shake or motion blur. A good rule of thumb is to aim for a shutter speed that's at least the same as your focal length. For example, when shooting at 85mm, try to keep your shutter speed at 1/85 or faster.
- Use manual focus: While the autofocus system is fast and accurate, there may be times when you want to have more control over your focus. Switching to manual focus can give you the ability to fine-tune your focus, especially in low light situations.
- Get up close and personal: The minimum focusing distance of 0.8m means that you can get relatively close to your subject with this lens. This can create intimate and engaging portraits, so don't be afraid to get in close and capture those details.
- Consider using a tripod: While the lens is relatively lightweight, using a tripod can help you achieve sharper images and more stability, especially when shooting in low light or with slower shutter speeds.
Overall, the Nikkor 85mm f/1.8 lens is a versatile and popular lens for portrait photographers. With its wide maximum aperture, fast autofocus system, and lightweight design, this lens is a great choice for capturing stunning portraits with a dreamy, blurred background. By experimenting with different apertures, watching your shutter speed, using manual focus, getting up close, and considering a tripod, you can get the most out of this lens and capture stunning portraits that will leave a lasting impression.