As I mentioned many times in training aspiring cosplay photographers there are two types of cosplay photography. Which is your convention coverage and traditional photo shoots. Depending on what you are doing you may want to stock your camera bag with particular lenses. The question is is that there are so many different types of lenses which ones should you get.
The first thing that should be clearly understood when considering what lenses to pick up is what you plan on doing. If you're looking for just general purpose uses the standard kit lenses such as the 18 - 55mm 3.5-5.6 is a relatively simple option. This lens will give you sufficient quality that is well above anything that a cell phone or point and shoot camera could achieve. Along with a 50 mm 1.8 which is relatively inexpensive you will have a good set of lenses that are good for any beginner in photography in general. The 50 mm 1.8 will give you very nice subject isolation and help you learn how to create interesting portraits.
As you get further along you will very likely find that the adjustable aperture lenses to be more of a challenge to use. Adjustable aperture lenses basically change how much light comes insignificant as you zoom in and out for your subject. It is better to be able to set your aperture where you would like to be and know that it will stay the same as you zoom in and out. In this case a 24-70mm or 28-75 mm 2.8 will be a excellent option. These are two examples of constant aperture lenses. With the aperture will remain fixed all the way through the zoom range of the lens.
Since cosplay photography is mostly portraits anyway, understanding portrait lenses is critically important. Now there are several lenses that I recommend that are very good for portrait work. These include a combination of zoom and prime lenses. The 50 mm 1.4 gives you a normal human vision perspective. Combined with a large aperture for gray subject isolation this lens is a must for many photographers. The 85 mm 1.4 and his brother the 135mm 1.8 are two of the gold standard lenses in portrait work. Both of these lenses give great definition features of the subject. I find that many photographers like to use the 70-200mm 2.8 for portrait work. These lenses allow you to zoom in and out or your subject at different focal lengths. Without having to change lenses. Many of them provide very good results. The only thing that you cannot get is a bigger maximum aperture.
In cosplay photography zoom lenses and prime lenses have their place. Some photographers seem to believe that because zoom lenses have moving parts from lenses offer better image quality. I have not seen any evidence to suggest that image quality coming they prime lens is better than what comes out of a zoom lens. The only real drawback to a zoom lens is that prime lenses are able to have bigger apertures. The drawback of course to having a prime lens essentially that in order to get close or with your subject you have to move your feet which can be difficult in crowded tight working spaces such as a convention hall with thousands of other attendees at a convention.
In my opinion I would want to use my prime lenses for photo shoots given the fact that they have bigger apertures which can help me to do a lot more in terms of subject isolation. I will also use a zoom lens for convention coverage given the fact that I did not have to walk to and from my subject get the focal length that I will want to have.
As with most photographers when I attend a convention I can take anywhere from 30 to 1500 photos at convention that I go to. So I have set basic guidelines that I follow when it comes to posting and post-processing images.
I have to give priority to every set of photos that I take. Obviously, paid photo shoots are given the highest priority. From that preferred photo shoots are given next priority. These preferred shoots are usually shoots that are done as an exchange service with a cosplayer. Free photo shoots come in next, there is always a chance that any free shoot that I do will not be posted. This usually happens at my discretion. Finally, if any hallway photos that I take. Hallway photos are always posted at my discretion.
The usual timetable for any paid or preferred shoots is 1 to 2 months after the photo shoot is taken place. There is no timeframe on other photos. I do consider request of any individual that I photographed. So feel free to contact me user or the contact form on my website or through Facebook and twitter.
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