6 Aug, 2013
Photography - Tips


Yeah! VSCO released Film Pack 04 today, a set of 117 Slide presets, something I've been waiting for since they started maybe two years ago. And it includes my favorite landscape film Fuji Velvia 50. 2013 landscape shots will rock! Looking forward to play around with it next week! This week I don't have reliable internet connection due to some travels, so my posts will be a bit delayed ...


Check out VSCO Slide, it's supposedly great as the three Packs before ...


See you later





19 Jun, 2013
Photography - Digital Noise


Hi there, first I have to say that I changed plans a bit because I will sometimes not be able to stick with the topic to the exact same day every week. I found it especially impossible to write legal articles without my books at hand, for example when I'm travelling. So as this blog focuses on photography there will be some weeks where I post more articles with new photos and those related to cameras and techniques. I will try, though, to switch to society and law in other weeks therefor a bit more.


Today I want to talk about digital noise and why it is important to modern photography. First of all, what is digital noise? Digital noise appears in digital photos sometimes when there is not enough light available, mostly in dim situations or at night. You can easily spot it in a photo as colour blotches and grittiness, the images is not as clean as those photos taken in bright daylight.


Why is it that way? You can compare digital noise to the grain in film photography. The bigger the grain in film was, the more sensitive it was to light, so the dimmer the surrounding could be in which you were going to take a sharp photo in. In digital cameras the film is replaced by a digital sensor of different sizes, actually a silicon chip with millions of little pixels, themselves comparable to the grain in film. Film sensitivities are expressed in ISO values, that's the same in digital. The higher the number the more sensitive now the digital sensor. ISO values normally alter in doubling steps, f.e. shooting in daylight is perfectly fine with ISO 100 with every possible camera. ISO 200 f.e. is double the sensitivity of ISO 100, so you can shoot with half the available light or with double the shutter speeds. It's getting interesting when you need to change to settings of ISO 1600 and above, because then big DSLR have a clear edge in image noise. But are the pixels getting bigger, too, like the film grain with rising sensitivity? No, they stay the same size, the higher sensitivity is achieved by amplifying the signal the sensor reads out from each pixel that collects the light. Complicated? Well, it's actually quite simple. Compare it to an audio amplifier. When you had a really muted recording on a Compact Cassette you had to increase the volume of the amplifier, that way the noise was getting louder, too. With a digital sensor it's the same, when you have only very little light available and recorded by the sensor, it needs to be amplified a lot. That way all steps during digital image processing that add noise to the image get amplified as well, for example the noise from the circuitry of the sensor, from heat, base noise levels and more.


Put simple, the lower the light the noisier the image. What can you do about it? First, to be honest, noise has never really been a problem for me, in film more grain could even add some atmosphere to the image and I find myself delibirately adding grain afterwards to an image that was clean in the first place. People are different, though, and there are situations where noise is not desired, for example in the church when you shoot the wedding couple kissing. It's always great to bring back clean images from situations you wouldn't have thought they were possible. Still, it's always a question of personal acceptance. Higher sensitivities also allow for higher shutter speeds, needed to freeze people's motions. Shooting in a dark room without flash you need very high ISO values to retain fast enough shutter speeds to not get blurry images. Image stabilizers for example let you shoot stationary subjects with longer shutter speeds but they can't help when shooting people in dim light.


On the other hand it really depends on when you find noise in an image obtrusive. Women often don't care about things like noise and I have to agree, when you take a great photo its noise levels become secondary. Still, easy things to consider when chosing a camera and lens combination to shoot people in dim light are: The bigger the sensor the lower the noise levels, DSLRs have sensors sometimes 10 or 20 times larger than a normal point and shoot. I show you what I mean. The following images are taken with a premium compact, a Panasonic LX7, that has a bigger sensor than normal compacts (7,44mm vs. 6,17mm) and a DSLR, a Canon 5D Mark III with a sensor 21 times bigger (36mm). Both where shot at the same shutter speeds, aperture levels and a very high sensitivity of ISO 3200. The above image is from the point and shoot, the lower one from the DSLR ...


And here are the two at a pixel level ...

As you can see you get much cleaner images with a big camera. But you can also make great images with a small one, it lies in the eye of the beholder. To give you a perspective I will shoot the Canon with an ISO level of 25600, 8 times more sensitive to light, have a look how they compare now ...


Noise levels are quite comparable with the 5D being sharper because it got more pixels. Referring to noise this means you can shoot with the same shutter speed in light levels 8 times darker or you can shoot with 8 times the shutter speed in the same light levels, here a 1/400s with the LX7 and a 1/3200s with the 5D. Pretty cool, huh!?


Second very important thing to consider for noise free images are fast lenses. Most zoom lenses already start slow and get even slower when zooming in. By slow I mean the shutter speed needed to let in the same light to the sensor. Those zooms often start at an aperture value of f/4 and slow down to f/5.6. What does that mean? Well, I will talk about shutter speeds and apertures another time but imagine the aperture of a lens as the pupil in the human eye, the smaller the pupil the less light gets in or the lower the light the bigger the pupil gets. It's the same with lenses, different lenses have different maximum aperture values, slow zoom lenses being quite dark. When you shoot in dim light you need slow shutter speeds to compensate for the little light coming through the lens, thus you get blurrier images of people or you need to increase the ISO level and get noisier images. Take a fast prime lens and you get more light to hit the sensor, that way you can retain fast enough shutter speeds to freeze people's motions or/and need a lower ISO level and get less noisy images. For example when you zoom in your zoom lens to shoot a portrait your lens aperture becomes a quite small f/5.6 at 55mm. Take a 50mm prime lens, that only costs 120 €, you get an aperture value of f/1.8. That's over three times the aperture value compared to the zoom, means over 8 times more light comes through the lens, you may shoot in 8 times lower light levels with the same shutter speed or you can shoot with 8 times the shutter speed in the same light. This gives you the ability to shoot with lower ISO levels and still get faster shutter speeds to stop motion. For example, when you shoot your slow zoom at 55mm f/5.6 with ISO 3200 in a bar your shutter speed could be a slow 1/30s, too slow to freeze motion and also too slow to compensate for camera shake. If you put on your 50mm prime and shoot at f/1.8 you could alter shutter speed to a 1/80s, fast enough to freeze motion in portraits and fast enough to compensate for camera shake. And you can set the ISO down to 800 and still get the same bright images as with the zoom with much less noise in it. Cool, eh? So, if you don't like noise, buy a camera with a big sensor and a fast lens and you're set to shoot in dim light without flash.


Alright, now you should understand what digital noise means and what effect it has on your images.


See you next time





10 Jun, 2013
Gear - What do you need to post process images?

Last week I was talking about cameras and which camera to use. Before I tell you what gear you need to post process images I will first give you some more recommendations on cameras and round it all up. I will also post links to my favorite sites to read in depth reviews and compare sample images if you feel like.

If you just want a camera better than the one in your cellphone I recommend taking Canon‘s point & shoots, they are great. My most favorite ones are from the S-line like the S100 or S110, if you want the newest. I still have an S95 and it takes really good images and is super small. You may as well take any of the less expensive models, but you will get an even smaller sensor which means more noise in most any light. And you won‘t get an as bright lens as on the S-line, means even more noise when shooting in dim situations and longer shutter speeds resulting in possibly blurry images.

If you want better than a point & shoot my first recommendation is to get a DSLR, there are more stylish options, but DSLRs have everything you need and the entry level models are much cheaper than fancier cameras like a Fuji X100 or X100s for example. What a DSLR can do much better than a point & shoot is: first, you see a real life image through the finder via a mirror, means there is no lag time between what‘s really happening and what you see in the finder, like on a display of point & shoots. Second, DSLRs have much bigger sensors means you get cleaner images with much less noise, especially in dim situations. A bigger sensor also means you‘re able to separate the subject you‘re taking a photo of and the background, you‘re actually able to make use of different depths of field. Fourth, DSLRs have a super fast autofocus, means you can chase your kids and the focus keeps up with their speed, something you wouldn‘t get from a point & shoot. Fifth, you can change lenses for different styles of photos or types of photography. You may for example buy a super long tele lens to shoot animals in the zoo up close and in the evening change to a fast prime lens to shoot on your friend's birthday party without flash. Sixth, DSLRs are classics and with them you‘re able to make all possible settings to aperture or shutter speed manually to give the image the exact look you want. That's important to understand and learn about the camera techniques and photography in general. What DSLR to buy? Pick a Canon or Nikon, they are the best and always come up with the newest inventions first and they have the largest selection of lenses available by a good margin. If you pick Canon my top pick is an EOS 550D, which is discontinued already, but it‘s got all you need in a little smaller package than the newer 600D-700Ds. Of course the super new 100D is even smaller, but it‘s also more expensive. If you want Nikon take a D3200 or D5200. More expensive DSLRs are even faster but also heavier and don‘t give better image quality, at least if you don‘t take a fullframe one like the Canon 6D or Nikon D600 for example. They start at 1.700 €, though, for the body alone.

If you want stylish you may also take a Fuji X100 or X100s. They also take wonderful images but operate generally slower than a DSLR and you‘re not able to change lenses for different shooting situations.

I happen to shoot for Olympus and they gave me their best camera, an OM-D, to take pictures with it. It‘s an amazing little camera but a little on the pricy side. It‘s autofocus is incredible, it‘s faster than the one in my 5D Canons. And I think the OM-D looks fantastic.

My most favorite site for extensive reviews are Ken Rockwell and imaging resource, check them out. I will show you some more and tell you how to use them in the future.

Alright, that‘s it about cameras for now, let‘s talk about what other gear you need to create great looking images.

Actually you don‘t need any more than your camera to take amazing looking images. Modern cameras have enough settings to let the images look great and to tweak them to your personal taste. If you want them to look even better, though, and to use some helpful software you need a computer with some programs I am going to talk about now.

What computer do you need? The great thing about digital cameras is that you can set them to record so called RAWs, imagine this format compared to ready jpgs as like the negatives in old film cameras. You‘re able to develop those files on the computer like you did with the negatives in the dark room. You can adjust exposure, white balance, lens corrections, noise reduction, sharpness, contrast and much more. You may even apply special filters or preset looks to make them look like film for example.

Anyway, you need a computer for all that, a tablet won‘t cut it. Any modern computer is fast enough for most all files, but you need more computing power when you‘re working on a lot of files, like for a wedding or when you use cameras with really a lot of Megapixels, like 22 or 36. It‘s possible with an older computer as well but it takes much longer. If you have 600 images to process a couple of minutes per image adds up to a lot of time. I was processing a wedding at the beginning of 2011 for example with a 2007 MacBook Pro with a 2,2 GHz Core 2 Duo and only 4GB of RAM. This wedding nearly took me two weeks to post process. When you‘re working with file management programs like Adobe Lightroom you also want the most RAM you can get. In my case I am using a 2011 QuadCore MacBook Pro with 16GB of RAM. This amount of memory makes processing much more fluent with less stuttering and least time waiting. I am also using SSDs instead of traditional hard drives as internal storage in my laptops. SSDs consist of chips like in an SD card, there is no moving parts and they are super snappy. Programs open instantly and you don‘t have to wait for files to be read from a hard drive any longer than necessary. When you‘re working with programs like Adobe Photoshop the computer‘s processor becomes the bottle neck. When you‘re working with single files, though, it‘s not a problem at all, it becomes important when you‘re doing projects with hundreds or thousands of images, then seconds or minutes add up to hours or days.

Why do I use Mac? I have a lot of problems with my Macs but it‘s still less than I had with my Windows computers and to be honest, software wise the Mac just gets my work done well. I am also heavily invested in Mac software by this time.

What Mac should you buy? Actually every new Mac is good enough for everything but the biggest jobs. I am considering getting a new MacBook Air soon as my day to day writing machine and image processor on the go. They are just gorgeous and super light. I need 256GB of storage, I have all my images on separate hard drives. 8GB of RAM is a must have and not enough for big jobs but fine for everything else.

What software to use? I am using Lightroom 4 (130 €) to import files from the cameras and to make basic adjustments like exposure, white balance, noise reduction, lens corrections, highlight and shadow correction and very important, to apply film emulsions from VSCO.



Those are plug-ins available for Lightroom or Photoshop separately (look left on the image above). I chose the Lightroom version becasue this way you can apply the looks to a lot of images at once before sending them to Photoshop. I bought all three available Film Packs 01, 02 and 03, they cost around 100 dollars each. After applying all those settings to the RAWs I send them to Photoshop CS6 (800 € regularly and 200-300 € for students or teachers). Photoshop is my most used program but you actually don‘t need it necessarily, Lightroom is sufficient, too, Photoshop just has one million more options. When you prepare images for different purposes and resize to different sizes Photoshop actually becomes your time saver. I use Photoshop to apply special curves to the images, desaturate, resize most of the time. In contrast to most other photographers I pass on using layers mostly. Somehow I just found I don‘t need them, I work on the files directly. Sounds totally weird to some, but maybe it fits my style of photography. I don‘t manipulate images too much, instead I rely on getting a great shot first and then apply “minimal“ post processing.

When I‘m finished with Photoshop I am finished with the job ;-)

Update: Adobe today announced Lightroom 5. I will tell you about the advantages and disadvantage of Adobe's new Cloud solution soon. There's a big problem with working on files offline, when you're not subscribed to the Creative Cloud anymore. So Adobe literally forces you to subscribe for the rest of your life. Lightroom 4 is still offline, anyway, so you may buy it instead as long as you can.

Update: Apple released new Haswell MacBook Airs today. Battery life is supposed to be nothing short of amazing with my top recommended 13" MacBook Air lasting 12 hours! That's so cool and fits right with my plans to add a new Air to my setup for mobile computing. Actually I need a new computer soon as my second machine just broke entirely last week. I also need one for my two and a half month trip from October through Russia, Central Asia, China and Southeast Asia. It's also cool that Apple lowered prices by 100 € making a 128GB 13" available for 1.099 € already, pretty good ...

Alright, more next time ...



3 Jun, 2013
Cameras - What camera to buy?

Actually I want to make Monday the Cameras day. I will give recommendations on which camera to buy, which software and Plug-ins to use, I will tell you which computer equipment is necessary to post process images, I will write reviews about different camera models, will show you my cameras and tell you why I chose them and I will show you sample images achieved with different camera types. It‘s going to be really cool.

I share all this information for free, so there will be no subscription needed to read my articles. I will tell you, though, from which shops I buy my stuff personally and tell you why they are trustworthy. I will post links in my articles to those shops. If you decide to get a camera for yourself, you can help me when going to the online shop via my blogsite. I will receive a little commission fee when you buy  the gear afterwards. This business model is called affiliate contract, it has become pretty common in recent years. NIKOLAIKIKI is totally free from advertising because I don‘t like it and it‘s not committed to any of those shops. If we find out in the future that one of those shops is not that great anymore I will stop recommending it and switch to a different one. Sounds good to you?

Well, so let‘s get started then ...

What camera to buy is actually a question many of us would consider as tough. Well, not any tougher than buying the right food, you just have to define what you really need, then it becomes quite easy. I will help you with it. There are many different camera makers and to tell you the truth, you can not really go wrong with most of them. There are some really great ones, though.

First of all I have to tell you that creating a great photo has nothing to do with the camera. You can take amazing photos even with your cellphone, bigger and more expensive cameras often just make it easier. To be honest, though, modern DSLRs have very complex menu systems and it really needs you to spend a good amount of time on learning those settings, you can save this time by just shooting with your cellphone or a point&shoot camera you already have.

If you want to spend some money on a serious camera there are some basic things you should keep in mind. I will tell you which camera is best for which style of photography in a minute.

One important thing is, the bigger the recording medium, with digital cameras the sensor, the better the image quality. Is image quality the same as artistic quality of an image? Obviously not, by image quality I mean technical quality of a photograph, today this means sharpness, noise levels, colour accuracy and dynamic range. The latter means the ability to record very bright and very dark areas with a single exposure.

Bigger recording mediums result into better image quality because more light and more subject information can be recorded. The worst digital images today come from our cellphone cameras, whose 1/3,2" sensors are super tiny roughly measuring only 4,5mm wide. The best images come from digital medium format cameras like from Hasselblad or Phase One with 60 or 80 Megapixels. If you want the ultimate, though, just buy an old or new large format film camera with 8x10“ sheets of film, yes, that‘s right, film as big as a sheet of paper. A recording medium this big translates into a couple of hundred Mega- if not a Gigapixels worth of data.

But let‘s go back to practical cameras.

If you want to invest money in a digital camera you have multiple options each of which is able to output images good enough for gallery display.

But there are only few options when you demand it for special puposes. For example if you want to take photos of your kids or babies you need a camera that operates fast and gives good image quality with fast shutter speeds. Those are needed to freeze subject movement. If you want fast shutter speeds you need a fast lens and a sensor that can handle less light without being too noisy. You won‘t be able to get that with a cellphone or even the best point&shoots, their sensors are simply too tiny and they operate to slow, especially autofocus needs to much time to lock to be able to keep up with the speed of a toddler for example. For this type of photography you need a DSLR (or recently system cameras like the Olympus OM-D came up with some amazingly fast autofocus that is even better than that of a DSLR), their autofocus speeds are superfast and you can change the normal zoom lens, which would not let enough light in, to a fast prime lens, that is designed to shoot in lower light levels or with faster shutter speeds.

What DSLR should you buy? Well, you can not really go wrong with either of the big brands. I chose Canon some 12 years ago because their autofocus and overall speed impressed me more than that of Nikon. I would pick Canon again nowadays, not so much because of the speed but there are some things I really love about Canon which you wouldn‘t find on a Nikon. If you started with Nikon you will find enough arguments to stick with them, too. Anyway, I love the big wheel on the back of the more expensive Canons, it lets you browse through images blazingly fast and adjusting exposure compensation with it is just so nice. Canon also happens to have some really artistic lenses you won‘t find with Nikon, it‘s the Canon 50 1.2 and the Canon 85 1.2, for example, there are simply no equivalents with Nikon. Nikon has the better overall flash system, though. I am not a big flash shooter, I love to capture scenes how they just happen to be without having to set up complicated lighting, but that‘s just me ...

A good call is also to go into a shop and take the camera in your hands and play with it. You may pick the one that you love more and you wouldn‘t go wrong. I would stick with Canon or Nikon, though, because they have the biggest selection of lenses and traditionally always come up with great features first. You may also buy an Olympus OM-D, I am shooting one for Olympus, who wanted me to be one of their photographers. You won‘t get the same image quality from an OM-D that you get from a fullframe Canon 6D or Nikon D600 for example.

There are a couple of things that I love so much about cameras like a 6D or 5D, whose sensors are the same 36mm size as the area of film exposed in old film cameras. Lenses keep the same field of view, with smaller sensor cameras like a Canon 550D, for example, you get a field of view multiplied by the factor of 1,6, making your 24mm lens a not so wide 38,4mm. With fullframe cameras your viewfinder view is much bigger than in less expensive cameras. The tiniest viewfinders are in entry level DSLRs like a Canon 1100D or 550D. But the most intriguing fact about those fullframe sensors is it‘s ability to blur backgrounds and that way to put the attention on special parts of the scene or the subject. To show you what I mean I take three images with three different cameras and focus on the camera in the middle of the frame. Background blur is the least with the point&shoot and the most beautiful with a fullframe camera and a prime lens, have a look ...

The first image is taken with a point&shoot Panasonic LX7, background blur is nearly non existent, the second image is taken with a popular MicroFourThirds Olympus OM-D with a 17mm prime shot at f/2, it's got some nice background blur to it. The last image is taken with a fullframe Canon 5D Mark III and a 35mm f/1.4 prime shot at 1.4, background blur is amazing ...

With a fullframe 36mm sensor you can really blur the backgrounds wonderfully, but that‘s also a matter of personal taste. I love to draw attention to special parts of the scene that way.

If you decide for a DSLR go pick an entry level Canon 1100D or 550D-700D or Nikon D3200 and learn and improve your techniques. You may as well go and buy a fullframe camera straight. It‘s a matter of price, too. You get a Canon 1100D from around 330 € already. A fullframe 6D for example will set you back at least 1.700 €. Both cameras will produce images much, much better than you‘re used to from your cellphone or point&shoot.

If you just want a great little camera better than a cellphone my top recommendations are Canon‘s Powershot S-line. I still have a Powershot S95, you may buy an S110 or S100 which are newer and better. They are super tiny and take wonderful images, you won‘t be able to chase kids with it or blur backgrounds with them, though.

My most favorite places to buy cameras and gear are Warsteiner Fotoversand, pixxass or comtech, if you‘re international order at B&H in New York, they are the best. I used to like Amazon as well because their customer service is amazing but I don‘t recommend them anymore. Being an employment law solicitor as well I can only shake my head when I look at how Amazon treats their employees, too bad.

Alright, that‘s a lot for today, there‘s much more camera stuff to come next week.

Ah, one last thing, I show you three more images, one is taken with a cellphone, one with a point&shoot and one with a 4.000 € Canon setup. You may guess which photo was taken with which camera ...

... and you may also guess which of those is my most successful image of all time. Just to give you an idea that the photographer makes the image and not the camera.

Happy shooting ...



29 May, 2013
Photography - Focal Length

Hey there! As I have have told you this blogsite will be focused on photography. I will host images from out of my life, work, travels and more. I will also be reviewing cameras and equipment, will write about what gear to use and why, which programs and plug-ins will get you the results you want faster and I will give a lot of tips regarding camera technics and what‘s important for a good picture. I will refer to my favorite sites of Ken Rockwell or imaging resource as well, that are specialized on testing cameras. My focus will be more from a photographers perspective. Some days of the week I will also write some articles about what‘s going on in the world regarding ethical and socio-political issues. I would also like to explain basic labour rights and Grundrechte (those articles will be in German) to you people that are not that familiar with law but as employees actually directly affected, maybe once a week and give some news on changes to labour laws and union developments and what that means for the normal employee ...

But today is a photo day and there‘s millions of things to be told when it comes to photography. But there‘s also some very simple things that you should always keep in mind. For example it‘s the photographer that takes the picture and not the camera. The most expensive camera will be totally wasted when you do not care about the most basic tasks that are necessary for a good photo. A great picture comes from a great vision and not a great camera. You can actually make winner shots even with a cellphone. So that‘s something to keep in mind.

More difficult things like „How to make a winner shot“ are to be discussed later on ;-). I will start with something basic that‘s also important to know when picking up a camera:

It‘s the focal length.

What does focal length mean? Focal length is indicated in millimeters on camera lenses, popular focal lengths are 50mm or 35mm, 24mm or 16mm for example. Those lenghts express the distance between the focus point (at which the beams of light come together in a single point and spread mirrored again from there on) and the recording medium, in digital cameras it‘s the sensor. The recording medium itself can have different sizes, the smaller it is, the smaller the focal length has to be accordingly to give the same field of view. Traditionally the focal lengths refer to the 35mm film format of classic cameras, the exposed part of the film was 35mm wide. Today 35mm equivalent cameras are those called fullframe, like Canon‘s or Nikon‘s Pro cameras for example. Their digital sensor is actually a tiny bit bigger, measuring 36mm.

If you now take a 50mm lens for example the focal length point is 50mm away from the image sensor. With a fullframe 36mm sensor you will get a so called normal field of view, pretty close to the human eye (actually I think the human eye field of view is somewhat wider, at least subjectively). The focal length point and both ends of the sensor shape a triangle. If you take a smaller sensor now, found in less expensive cameras or point&shoots, with the same focal length the angle in the triangle becomes smaller, resulting in a narrower field of view. You could actually draw the sensor on a paper as a line of say 36mm and draw the focal lenght point of your choice next to it with the according distance, in this case 50mm. If you extend the lines coming from both ends of the sensor beyond the focal length point you get the idea of what would actually be captured in the real world.

With a 24mm lens for example the distance between the focal length point and the sensor is roughly half of a 50mm lens, shaping a twice as wide angle in the triangle described above, thus you get a twice as wide field of view. Take an even smaller focal length and the field of view gets even wider.

To give you an idea of how different focal lengths look like I took a couple of photos from out of the window of our flat with various focal lengths, starting with an ultrawide 12mm, then 16mm and so on, have a look ...


12mm focal length

16mm focal length

24mm focal length

35mm focal length

50mm focal length

70mm focal length

105mm focal length

135mm focal length

200mm focal length

The main cameras I use are Canon‘s 5D models which also have 36mm sensors. Lenses used with those bodys keep the same field of view they have originally been designed for. Apart from the technical aspects explained above the focal lengths or lenses you use have a very strong impact on the look of your images and it often depends what subject you are going to photograph which lens is best suited. If you shoot animals for example a very long zoom lens is needed to get very detailed shots.

On the other hand I once read a photographer say you get the best images with a wide lens and get as close as you can to the subject. Actually that‘s pretty much what I think everytime I look at really dramatic images. Because you get much more in the frame with a wide lens you can immediately see if a photo was taken with a long tele lens or a wideangle lens. To get people resonably sized into the frame you need to get very close bringing the recipient or viewer right into the scene. This makes photos with a wideangle lens so much more special and intimate or even spectacular. I always find images with long tele lenses a bit boring because it‘s obvious that the photographer has not been very close to the subject. When shooting a wedding for example for me it is very important to be as close as I can to the couple to bring back the most intimate and touching images of this special day.

Documentary often refers to 35mm lenses to be the best suited for this style of photography. I am using a 35mm lens a lot as well, also on weddings, my most used focal length, though, is probably 24mm. I love wide angles because it brings you right in the middle of the action. In very tight places I could imagine using 16mm or even 12mm more often, it happens, though, that a lot of my images are taken at 24mm. For artistic portraits I normally use a Canon 50 1.2, that gives you spectacular background blurs, but that‘s some topic for next time.

See, there‘s much to say about focal lengths ...

See ya later