Here it is—my first photograph with the new 35mm lens. Finally. Despite having this bad boy for a week now, up until tonight I had yet been able to piece together a serviceable shot. Sure there’ve been a few passable photographs, but nothing of real interest or note. This isn’t entirely unexpected: 1) I’ve never shot at a 35mm focal length before; and 2) there’s always a learning curve with a new lens. Where are its sweet spots? How sharp is it wide open? What kind of bokeh and depth of field are we dealing with? How shallow is the area of focus and how does it change throughout all f-stops? How fast? How does it focus in low light? In hyperfocal how close to my foreground subject can I get while keeping it and the horizon in acceptable focus? And so it goes. While this learning curve can feel tedious and restrictive at times, it’s a necessary period in trial and error as you learn the limits and capabilities of your lens. So here’s to a spring and summer of experimentation, and a few expletives.
Through limited period of field time so far, my primary observations orbit damn this thing is heavy, and holy smokes, this thing is sharp wide open! The latter has me excited, and the former I don’t mind—I actually prefer a heavier rig, I have strong, sizable hands and prefer the heft; though I suspect I may be in the minority here. However, the combination of sharp focus and shallow depth of field—particularly wide open at f/1.4—has me salivating for flower season. This should afford some cool looks with all the flora about the area that’s about to bloom.
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