Different Lenses - DSLR Photography: Using Your Lens

Different Lenses - DSLR Photography: Using Your Lens - student project

So, what lenses to use in which situation? Like last time, let's start off with what I own, before I explain why I used a specific lens. 



  • AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-140mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR
  • AF-S DX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.8G
  • Sigma 105mm f/2.8 EX DG OS HSM Macro

There are three shots I'd like to share, since they differ in style a lot. 

First: Mushrooms. These little things are so photogenic. If you take the time to stop now and then when you're making an autumn walk in the woods, you see the weirdest sorts and forms. Just don't stuff any of these things in your mouth. ;-)

Different Lenses - DSLR Photography: Using Your Lens - image 1 - student project

Type of lens used: Nikkor 18-140mm at 75mm
Shutter time: 1/25 
Aperture: f/5
ISO: 800

So naturally, when you want these things framed nicely, you need to get your clothes dirty (or use a tripod!). I got low, thought of a good composition, with a bit of zoom and set down the tripod to get everything in the shot I liked. I really, reaallly wanted a good bokeh (shallow depth of field) because of the natural light in the woods. This makes for a magical look on your result. And as you can see, with f/5 the subject is pretty smooth in focus, while the back is blurry and the lights almost turn into little bulbs. With a slower shutter I tried compensating for the smaller aperture. Even that, under the circumstances, wasn't enough. So I cranked up the ISO to 800. This is one of the shots I still use as a background on my phone, because I'm still so proud of it. 


Second: Stonehenge. Who doesn't want to photograph Stonehenge when they get the opportunity to see it? So, since it was a busy day, I came up with a plan (since back then I found out that 'dragging the shutter' actually helps fading out annoying people crossing your perfect shot). I lined up and got everything ready for the shot. *Ka-pow*

Different Lenses - DSLR Photography: Using Your Lens - image 2 - student project

Type of lens used: AF-S DX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.8G
Shutter time: 8 seconds
Aperture: f/4.5
ISO: 100

As you can see the shutter time was absurd. 8 Seconds is a lifetime. And as you can see (or not) there are absolutely no people in front of me. In the back there are a few elderly, moving so slow they are still in it :-D.

Of course this shot is also editted in Lightroom, so the darks and clouds look a bit more dramatic.


Third: An electricity pylon. 

A month or so ago, I got up really early to bring my parents to the airport. And when I rode back home the sun was JUST rising. Luckily I brought my gear with me! Just before the sun started rising, the sky colored bright orange. It was truly amazing. As the pylons are pretty common in our area, I wanted some symmetry and also a bit of the mysterious color and surroundings on it. 

Different Lenses - DSLR Photography: Using Your Lens - image 3 - student project

Type of lens used: AF-S DX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.8G
Shutter time: 1/80 
Aperture: f/8
ISO: 100

As you look closely, you can see the entire trail of pylons behind this one. A little matroshka effect :-). 

To make the symmetry work I actually had to resize the image. But you really get dragged in it from the top, which I like a lot. Obviously, I used the 35mm since it could easily fit everything in the frame I wanted. And that day I brought the 35 and the 105mm with me. So easy picking. 


Thanks for reading up on my project again! Love to hear what you guys and girls think of it and what your thoughts are on specific lenses. If you want to know something about one or more of my lenses, don't hesitate to ask. 

- Jeff