One Lens for a Day


johnriley

Link Posted 21/05/2012 - 00:19
It's the early hours of Monday now, so strictly it was yesterday that we spent some time in Ness Gardens on the Wirral. It was originally intended to be the Yorkshire Air Museum, but Tardis-like we strayed off course slightly.

The exercise for today was "one lens" - Sue chose the SMC Pentax-FA 50mm f1.4 and I chose the SMC Pentax-FA 43mm f1.9 Limited.

It's an interesting thing to try and we may do it again. It makes the photographer work harder to get the right images. As a general rule though it did confirm in my own mind that I've pretty much moved away from using prime lenses.

There's no denying the fine qualities of a good prime, but too many shots are just impossible. It made for an entertaing session nonetheless.
Best regards, John

plis

Link Posted 21/05/2012 - 06:39
Should have been interesting experience to be limited to just one lens.
If I was to do such experiment, I think I would take my plastic DA 35 f2.4 and survive. Would not be easy but doable. Anyway, my last observations proof I am getting closer to using primes now. I used to have 18-250, 28-105, I still have 17-70, but last time the lens I use most is 16-45. So, the distance between maximal and minimal focal length decreases...

BTW, any visible results of your sessions to share?

Regards,
Peter
K-S2 + T28-75 + DA10-17 + DA18-135 + HD55-300 + LTD 21, 35, 40, 70 + Super A + A28 2.8 + A50 1.4 + A50 1.7

bwlchmawr

Link Posted 21/05/2012 - 06:48
I do this all the time as I refuse to carry a bag of lenses as well as a heavy DSLR and I nearly always manage by zooming with my legs. Of course fitting the kit zoom rather than a prime lens is cheating...
Best wishes,

Andrew

"These places mean something and it's the job of a photographer to figure-out what the hell it is."
Robert Adams
"The camera doesn't make a bit of difference.  All of them can record what you are seeing.  But, you have to SEE."
Ernst Hass
My website: http://www.ephotozine.com/user/bwlchmawr-199050 http://s927.photobucket.com/home/ADC3440/index
https://www.flickr.com/photos/78898196@N05

gartmore

Link Posted 21/05/2012 - 07:23
Interesting, I've pretty much stopped using zooms now.
Ken
“We must avoid however, snapping away, shooting quickly and without thought, overloading ourselves with unnecessary images that clutter our memory and diminish the clarity of the whole.” - Henri Cartier-Bresson -

johnriley

Link Posted 21/05/2012 - 08:11
Quote:
BTW, any visible results of your sessions to share?

Yes, my images are pre-uploaded in my EPZ portfolio, as we can now upload multiple images per day and then submit them to the gallery one per day.

http://www.ephotozine.com/user/johnriley1uk-22471
Best regards, John

beachboy2

Link Posted 21/05/2012 - 08:53
Nice sharp photos John, but your zoom lens photos also look sharp.
cheers
bb2

K5, K20D, Bigma, Sigma EX 105, Sigma EX 10-20, Sigma EX 28-70 F2.8, Sigma Ex 1.4TC,
Pentax 135 F3.5, Pentax 30mm F2.8 , Pentax 50mm F1.7, Pentax 55mm F1.8,
Super Taks: 35mm F3.5, 50mm F1.4, 135mm F3.5, 200mm F4
Vivitar TX 200mm F3.5,Vivitar (Komine)135mm f2.8, Vivitar 2X TC, Vivitar T4 400mm F6.3
Tamron SP 35-80,80-210 F3.8, Helios 44M, Mir 1B 37mm F2.8, Jupiter 9 85mm F2, Chinon 28mm F2.8, 3M-5A 500mm F8 etc etc

Hyram

Link Posted 21/05/2012 - 08:54
bwlchmawr wrote:
............. and I nearly always manage by zooming with my legs.....................

The problem that I have is not having perfected the art of walking on water
Hyram

Bodies: K20D (2), K10D, Super A, ME Super, Auto 110 SLR, X70, Optio P70
Pentax Glass: DA* 300, DA* 60-250, DA* 50-135, DA* 16-50, DA 70 Ltd, FA 31 Ltd, DA 35 Ltd, DA 18-55 (2), DA 12-24, DA 10-17, M 200, A 35-70, M 40, M 28, Converter-A 2X-S, 1.4X-S, AF 1.7, Pentax-110 50, Pentax-110 24
Other Glass: Sigma 105 macro, Sigma-A APO 75-300
Flash: Metz 58 AF-1 P, Pentax AF160FC ringflash, Pentax AF280T

johnriley

Link Posted 21/05/2012 - 09:01
Quote:
Nice sharp photos John, but your zoom lens photos also look sharp

Thanks bb2, and this highlights the problem, if it is a problem. The images with zoom lenses look as good as the images with primes, so the areas of use for the primes become somewhat limited. No pun intended.

The primes come into their own when light levels are very low and/or wide apertures are needed.
Best regards, John

CoDa

Link Posted 21/05/2012 - 09:13
I have been doing this for some time, but it's a zoom (Tamron 17-50).
It does make you position yourself correctly and I end up having more exercise that way. Helps to keep you fit and loose weight.

Regards
Colin

“Nobody made a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could do only a little.”
Edmund Burke (1729 – 1797)



stevejcoe

Link Posted 21/05/2012 - 09:16
Restricting yourself to one prime requires more planning up front with a clear idea of what you are likely to come across.

The difference in quality is not necessarily the issue it once was, but I do find using a prime quite liberating. In days of old the 50mm or 35mm alternated as my standard, so nowadays I choose between; 24mm, 28mm, 31mm or 35mm.

Regards - Steve

Mannesty

Link Posted 21/05/2012 - 09:23
Apart from my macro primes, I rarely use my others (31/43/77), even the DA* 300mm gets very little use since acquiring the Sigma 150-500mm.

Zooms are just so much more convenient to use 99.999% of the time.

I just don't know if I could bring myself to sell the primes though, but if I had a good offer . . . who knows.
Peter E Smith

My flickr Photostream

fatspider

Link Posted 21/05/2012 - 09:31
I doubt I would be disciplined enough to go out with just one camera and lens, plus I'd be too afraid of missing a shot.
My Names Alan, and I'm a lensaholic.
My PPG link
My Flckr link

fritzthedog

Link Posted 21/05/2012 - 09:31
johnriley wrote:
Quote:
Nice sharp photos John, but your zoom lens photos also look sharp

Thanks bb2, and this highlights the problem, if it is a problem. The images with zoom lenses look as good as the images with primes, so the areas of use for the primes become somewhat limited. No pun intended.

The primes come into their own when light levels are very low and/or wide apertures are needed.

Something I concluded some time ago - it may just be my less than perfect eyesight or lack of ability - but I can rarely see any difference between images taken on a good quality zoom and a prime in my hands - other than the fact that it is much easier to get a nice oof bokeh with a fast prime on portraits etc. Although with a little care and attention to detail even this can be conquered.

I used to carry a bag full of primes - from 28mm to 200mm but gradually they were all used less and less so parted with most of them

As for going out with only one lens to challenge yourself - I do this fairly frequently and it can be just as challenging with a zoom - especially if I select my Sigma 10-20 or Pentax fisheye.

I went out on Saturday with just one lens per body - 17-70 on the Kr and 50-150 on the K5 - but that is not really very challenging - although I always suffer withdrawal symptoms when I leave my beloved 10-20 at home

Carl
No matter how many lenses I have owned - I have always needed just one more

walkeja

Link Posted 21/05/2012 - 11:31
That's how I started, K1000 and 40mm prime lens.
Pentax K1-ii and MZ6
Pentax Lenses 28-80 F, 300 DA*, 80-200 F, 35 F2.4 AL, M50 F1.7, 28-105 DFA, 20 F4 SMC
ONE UNITED Member

Frogherder

Link Posted 21/05/2012 - 12:13
John, you could always run a variation on your challenge.

You pick a lens for Sue and she picks yours.

I tried that with my wife (who isn't a photographer) and she always seems to pick the one I don't like using [I have a small collection of M42 lenses]. I suppose this is one way of sorting out the ones I should get rid of.


regards
Bernard
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