next lense?

I started with the kit lens for my canon t3i and then purchased the "nifty fifty" . Any recommendations for my next lense investment? I do mostly newborn and child photography in a smaller studio.

Thanks for the help!


  • Kevin KrowsKevin Krows United StatesMember Posts: 1,462
    2.8L 70-200IS I never leave home without it.
  • John Watson Photography LSWPPJohn Watson Photography LSWPP Southampton, UKMember Posts: 111
    I also would recomment the 70-200, same as Kevin, but thats because I mainly to weddings, etc. As a baby photographer, you may find a F1.4 prime may suit you better ?
  • Stroodle88Stroodle88 White Salmon, WAMember Posts: 90
    I would also recommend some lens in the 70-200 range generally, though I think for newborns and/or children portraiture in a small space, that might be overkill because you might not end up using the ranges closer to the 200mm end. I personally strive for nice bokeh when taking newborn/family photos and though you can definitely achieve that with a 70-200, you might enjoy the same effect for less by purchasing an 85mm prime. As a Canon shooter, you have 3ish options available to you - if you're on a budget, I'd consider getting the Sigma 85mm f/1.4. It's a fantastic lens (this is my 85mm lens of choice) though if you go that route, I *highly* recommend you try the lens out in person as Sigma has the tendency to have quality control issues leading to weird focusing behavior. Otherwise, if the sky's the limit, the Canon 85mm f/1.2 is also a great lens, though the autofocus is much slower than the Sigma. My two cents.
    Bertrand Hui
    Bertrand Hui - Lifestyle Photographer
    Based in the Columbia River Gorge, Pacific Northwest
  • Maidul IslamMaidul Islam Member Posts: 1
    I am too started with the kit lens for my canon t3i
  • White LightWhite Light Member Posts: 6
    I'm guessing you're not planning on breaking the bank considering you're shooting with a t3i and not a more expensive camera. So I would suggest replacing the kit lens with a high quality, but affordable zoom such as the Tamron 17-50.

    Eventually though, you might want to upgrade to a full frame camera, to take advantage of the bokehlisciousness. If so, I would recommend a used 5d1, presuming you're not into video.

    Also bear in mind, some lenses, such as the Tamron mentioned above, are not compatible with Full Frame cameras, so before choosing your next lens, you might need to figure out if and when you may be upgrading your camera in the future. If you plan on upgrading to FF, but still want to invest in a great lens to keep you going, you might also look at the Tamron 28-75 2.8, another bang-for-buck winner.
  • CharlieJ PhotographyCharlieJ Photography North CarolinaMember Posts: 6
    I have the Tamron 28-75 (used mostly on a Canon 5D Mk II). However, for your use, I would suggest the Canon 24-70L f/2.8. After that, get the 70-200L f/2.8 (unless your space is very small). Best wishes!
    CharlieJ - PPNC
    CharlieJ Photography
  • EarlJEarlJ Member Posts: 3
    edited March 2014
    Hello SaraJean. . .
    I'm with CharlieJ and a couple others who recommend other than Canon lenses - Canon has a tendency to overprice their gear... (sigh)

    I, too, also love the 85 mm Sigma f/1.4 ... you can rent one for a few days to see how you like it before you decide to buy. I used it for active indoor sports (table tennis) and absolutely love it.
    Many reviews I've read about it from people who have tried both the Sigma and the Canon indicate that it is slightly faster ... half the price ... and provides quality pictures just as good as the Canon 85 mm f/1.2.

    Rent one and see for yourself... then decide, IF you haven't just yet.

    Please come back and let us know what you've decided... (wink)

    Many of us are interested (and curious) ... (grin)

    Good luck. . . until that time. . .

    "Born on Valley Isle,
    Home now, North Carolina;
    Aloha y'all."

    Earl J.
    Born on Valley Isle,
    Home now, North Carolina;
    Aloha Y'all...!
  • christopherstevenbchristopherstevenb OttawaMember Posts: 255
    I'd consider grabbing an 85mm 1.8 used version--I've seen them for about $400. It's a longer lens, which you really do need for any kind of portraiture, but it's not so long that you'll have to tear a hole in the wall to use it :)

    Ottawa Wedding Photographer
    Christopher Steven B. Photography | Wedding blog

  • Imagewrx,LLCImagewrx,LLC Member Posts: 1
    If you are going to rent; consider the Canon 85mm f1.2 L series lens. It will blow the background away, just be careful you don't get the eyes in focus and the ears out of focus. At f1.2 it will have a very narrow DOF.
  • Blue Sky PhotographsBlue Sky Photographs Dubuque, IowaMember Posts: 5
    I love my 85/1.8 but for newborns and children you totally need a 100 macro. We have the cheaper older 100 macro 2.8 and I use it for newborns and children every time. You need to get those details! It's almost as sharp as the 85 and will be a little long in your smaller studio, but worth it for the creamy background and ability to capture detail.
  • Blue Sky PhotographsBlue Sky Photographs Dubuque, IowaMember Posts: 5
    p.s. I googled you and we're only 3 hours away, you can come try mine if you're in the area. . . :)
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