Nick Exposed

A Creative Community Hosted By Photog/Designer Nick Mayo

Deep in Thought

ISO 1600 50mm f/2.0 1/8sec

Tonight I decided to play around with this Canon EF 50mm 1.8 prime lens Im borrowing, and so far I find it a bit quirky. I think it may be just this lens, because I’ve heard some excellent reviews and heard of some amazing results, but every time I try shooting with it, it is extremely inconsistent (which was the same complaint the owner of the lens had as well). The exposure levels are all over the board, I could be shooting the exact same scene, same settings and all and it will be a stop or more under-exposed versus the last shot. Its almost like its self bracketing. So far I would almost just assume shoot with my 18-55 and not have to deal with the hassel. But then again all of this could just be my lack of experience with it, and I do plan on taking it out more to see if I can get it figured out. Its a good lens and it has its purpose, and I do love the fact that it makes you think about your shots more, but sometimes I just think this particular one is a bit quirky haha.

For all those who follow my posts, I am feeling better. I took enough vitamin C today to overthrow even a Godzilla sized virus trying to take over my system. So to celebrate we went down to the local pool hall and pub for a few games. I had brought with me a specialized lens cover I made today to get a interesting bokeh light effect, being the parking lot has a good amount of lights. But with the 50mm giving me issues I tossed the idea and started shooting Michelle (which only a photographer could say without getting the cops called on them hahaha). It was a bitter body paralyzing cold so we only shot for a couple brief minutes, but I still came away with some enjoyable photo’s.

I was drawn towards this photo in particular because of the expression of deep thought on her face. Its the zoned in look day dreamers get when they are completely enthralled by their inner thoughts. Also being a graphic designer I love the slanted line the lights in the background create, drawing the focus towards the center of the photo. Its that extra bit of contrast that adds a tad extra interest and a slight tension to the scene. The black and white breaks the scene down to a simple form, allowing you to get straight to the wonders of her captivating thought.

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24 thoughts on “Deep in Thought

  1. great. She looks like she is standing on the set of 1940/50s Hollywood film set.

  2. sunny, bright & shining on said:

    A camera lens is a very picky thing until the right person checks out all those f-stop settings. Lol
    Your picture is a treat as always. It is wonderful portrait. Hi Michelle! You have a photogenic quality? A true smile beams bright as does your happiness. πŸ™‚
    Have a great day! Brenda

    • Hey thanks Brenda! Yea, I will definitely run the gamut on the f-stop’s. Being night and only using the light from the parking lot even at f/2 with ISO 1600 I had a 1/8 shutter speed, so there wasn’t to much wiggle room. haha

  3. Nice photo, and definitly practice more with the prime 50mm. I have my Nikon 50mm f\1,8 and it works fantastic, it is e great way to learn and evolve as a photographer.

    Keep trying and don’t give up πŸ™‚

    • Thanks for the encouragement bud! Im not giving up on it by any means, but I’ve played with other primes and had no where near the amount of issues I have with this guy. But I once heard Zach Arias say he sometime likes to have to fight with his equipment for his photograph because it makes him feel more attached. haha So I kind of feel the same way when it comes to this lens. πŸ™‚

  4. It’s gorgeous photo! I have to say I’ve gotten better with my prime the more I used it. One trick I heard is not open the lens fully and go up a few stops. I found it difficult to use at first too but do love it now!

  5. Experiment with the exposure modes on the camera body. A fast prime sometimes affects the program a bit differently from a zoom. Biggest advantage: light gathering and sharpness due to fewer glass/air surfaces, along with forcing you to plan ahead on composition. Agree with Filipe; it will teach you a lot.

  6. Lovely portrait. She is beautiful. I have the Canon 50 mm f/1,8 and I love it. I find it makes especially portraits great. I have had it for more than 2 years now and I take it out fairly often. I have taken both professional portraits and family portraits with it. Keep on trying! πŸ™‚

  7. What a beautiful photo Nick and a great capture of expression. Hey, there may be something actually wrong with the lens. I sent my 18-200mm in to get serviced to Canon, and darned if it didn’t have a missing screw in it. They fixed it and it works brilliantly ! Might be worth a try. I also had it calibrated to my camera body.
    I also have a nifty 50, but haven’t spent the time playing with it. Perhaps I’ll drag it out and try some bokeh shots with it.

    • Hey Bella! Yea Im kind of thinking there may be an actual issue with this lens. I’ve shot other primes and they are no where near as inconsistent and finicky as this lens. But its still fun to shoot with, and the fact it gives me a hard time makes me appreciate the good shots I get out of it more πŸ™‚

  8. It must have been dark there – and if you managed to keep it this steady at 1/8 and handheld.. good on you! There is bit of blur/softness to the image, but in general a good result in very difficult conditions.
    Don’t you just know it that as a photographer one should always travel with a truck full of equipment πŸ˜‰

    • Haha, yea I accidentally left my equipment truck at home πŸ™‚ It was dark, and hand holding was no easy task. Especially with shivering from the cold wind. But I feel the blur of the edges kind of add to the early Hollywood film feel. Thanks for taking notice of the difficulty conditions haha

  9. Nick, I shot yesterday’s image with my Canon 50mm f1.4 lens. All the above people are right, with the fixed lens (prime?) you’re going to get clearer images. I can’t speak about the f1.8, but I’ve had my f.14 50mm for a couple of years and it’s a workhorse: reliable, excellent in low light, and good clean images. I’d check it out if you could, and also like is said above, keep practicing with it. That’s why we’re in this for the year, right. Blessings on your recovery as well!

    • Thanks for the comment and experience! I would love to get a 1.4 50 mm prime for myself but its out of my price range right now. I know primes are excellent for better quality and have had some fun shooting some others before. Im going to keep working this lens to see if I can get it figured out, but I may do the owner a favor and send it into Canon to see if there are any issues with it. I don’t think it should be so inconsistent. Thanks again for your thoughts πŸ™‚

  10. nice composition ..
    As Karl Chapman said it look like old film set

  11. there is something in this shot that speaks to how you feel about her. can’t put my finger on it. a thousand words and such.

  12. I love the shot! πŸ™‚ Your girlfriend is very photogenic! I agree with Terry. I am Nikon and I have the 50 1.4. I have also found that if it’s wide open it doesn’t do as great. Every lens has a “sweet spot.” So definitely don’t give up on it and keep experimenting. The 50 is one of my favorite lenses!

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