The ‘making’ vs ‘taking’ debate, and how I fit in my first prime lens.

Perhaps you noticed this debate: ‘Making a photo’ versus ‘Taking a photo’ on the web right now.

You might also have read one of the many articles about the why, what en how of a prime lens. 

This how I think, using a prime lens automatically puts you in the 'make' group of the debate. I found out in person after I bought a prime lens myself. 

The 'make/take' debate is a mostly semantic. But it does make a point.

A prime lens is a lens with a fixed focal distance. This means that you can not zoom. There are several reasons why you would even want to give up zoom. I am sure everybody who uses prime lenses has their favourite reason.

Because the lens can’t zoom, the mechanics of the lens are much simpler, and the lens much lighter.

Prime lenses have, normally, better quality optical components than the kit lens that came with the camera. One result are sharper images.

Fixed focal lenses are often more light sensitive. When shooting under low light conditions you don't immediately have to crank up the ISO.

My reasons to try out a prime lens were: better optical components (sharper images) and more light sensitive (lower f-number), compared to my kit zoom lens. 

A super nice extra bonus, I realised when I took the lens for a test drive, is the fact that the lens is half the size of the kit lens and much, much lighter. I expect to carry my camera around with me more often with this lens attached.  

No zoom, means I have to walk more to get closer or farther away from the subject. There is a lot more ‘interaction’ between me and the subject I’m photographing. Even if the subject is inanimate. 

And that’s exactly how a prime lens fits into the ‘making’ vs ‘taking’ debate.

For me it’s a total new experience in taking photos. And I think that I will learn to love the prime lens more than the kit lens, despite the fact that I’ll miss being able to zoom in.

These are the first images I took playing with the new lens, on an early Wednesday morning in Munich.

I somehow forgot to import the images to Lightroom before formatting the memory cards of the camera, so these are some of the JPGs I was left with.

 

jwamsterdam