There are several things always running through the back of the mind of a photographer: One is that constant nagging fear that one day you’ll strangle yourself with your camera strap, the other is that whatever gear you get there’s always something better. Ok, so the former isn’t quite true, but it’s far too easy to find yourself fixated with camera gear rather than taking pictures. I like to think that I could pick up any decent SLR and lens kit and shoot a wedding creatively, regardless of the make of camera or the standard of the lenses.

Gear does however make a difference. Lenses especially. I’ve recently bought a Zeiss 50mm lens, which just sneaks onto the scale of being the most expensive lens I’ve bought, and the only more expensive items I own are my top camera body and my car. Why Zeiss? Why so much money on what is essentially glass and metal? Several things: A top lens is not only sharper, but it produces better colours and  – most importantly with Zeiss – renders out of focus areas beautifully.

It’s hard describe, but the areas in a photo that aren’t in focus actually play a major part in the how the image looks. Either they can be scruffy, or they can blend smoothly. Zeiss are renown for the out of focus areas produced by their lenses. Here’s an example how the out of focus areas can swirl and blend to help the subject pop…

(The above image was shot on a Nikon D700 with a Zeiss 50mm f/2 makro Planar lens at an aperture of f/2.)


About David Charlwood

I am a professional photographer, specialising in weddings, working across the UK, based in the South East. View all posts by David Charlwood

One response to “Zeiss

  • Patrick La Roque

    I had the shakes when I bought a Nikon 70-200 f2.8, which cost more than my camera body… But the results are indeed impressive. Glass makes a big difference.

    Love where the out of focus areas fall in the picture. Amazing how much depth it creates. And that swirling effect is also evident in another pic… Nice.

    Another piece to add to the wishlist… Sigh 😉

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