50mm vs 35mm POV (PL25 vs 17/1.8) a story...

Started Mar 6, 2014 | Discussions thread
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Pasmia Contributing Member • Posts: 536
50mm vs 35mm POV (PL25 vs 17/1.8) a story...

Unlike many of you, I learned photography through M43 as my first system camera. Admittedly, I always wanted a big fat DSLR, but I could never afford it. I came across the GF2 in a black friday sale three years ago and it's been downhill since.

My learning path lead me to purchase the PL25 almost immediately after purchasing the GF2 and almost immediately after that, I sold the GF2 and picked up the G3 because of utter lack of features of the GF2. I outgrew the GF2 in about two and half months from the only camera experience being consumer point and shoots and cell phones. I shot with the G3 for the next two and half years, almost exclusively with the PL25.

I spent that whole time learning to composed everything form group portraits, landscapes, cityscapes, solo portraits, environmental portraits, and candid/street photography all through the PL25. It was a task and a half. More often than not, it was a challenge to say the least. I would say that only in last six months or so of owning the PL25, did I actually feel comfortable shooting with the 50mm perspective. It is a hard FL to master and I think I still have a lot t learn.

Back in October, I had an emergency financial situation that required all resources of money, including selling all of my gear; G3, 14-45, 45-200, 14mm, PL25, 45-200, Oly45, and a metz flash. I hated my G3 because of its ridiculous mini DSLR look. I hated the PL25 because the size of the combo was nudging against the size of APSC DSLRs. I was partially glad to be rid of it to tell you the truth. This just meant that in time, I would finally be getting some new gear.

This past holidays were the first holidays in three years that my family didn't have Christmas portraits to hand out. We did some lame iphone shots and facebooked it, but it wasn't the same. I started to really miss my gear.

Fast forward to the present and I picked up an E-P5 with 9-18, 17, 45, 40-150, and an FL600r. It literally took me about one day to feel comfortable with the 17mm/f1.8. It feels like I'm cheating. I seriously thought I was going to hate the focal length. But I don't. It just feels so natural. I kind of miss the PL25 just for the challenge of trying to compose wide scenes in small places. Or even trying to find that one window that tells a story in a mess of things. The 17mm just sort captures the moment exactly as I see it.

When people are playing ping pong, I'd try to compose a shot with the PL25 that encompasses a players face and emotion as he's about hit the ball. It forces me to think of these things. The 17mm, I just snap away as the player takes a dive and BOOM! MOMENT CAPTURED!

I would take the kids to a local pizza/arcade restaurant with the PL25 and capture moments of excitement that show buzzing and flashing lights in the background as they jump for joy. I capture emotion and I capture the heart of the moment. I finally went there this past weekend with kids again with the 17mm and I'm capturing everything; fleeting moments, awkward moments, dull moments, wins, losses, trips, falls, everything!

These feelings about these two lenses are not to be viewed as trying to sell one over the other. I just wanted to point out the how two different focal lengths affect my mentality when shooting. The PL25 made me get into the moment. It made me slow down and think. It made me compose perfection. The 17mm, it freed me. I can think about composure if I really want to, but if not, that's fine too. Going from the 50mm PoV to the 35mm PoV was like going from a bad job that pays well to a damn good job that pays decent. The PL25 will always be my first real lens, but the Olympus 17mm/f1.8 has made photography fun.

BTW... this is a very quick blurb about what I'm thinking/feeling about my new gear setup. My apologies if I went off on a tangent about things unrelated to my title. But hey, here's a pic of my youngest son at the arcade/pizza place I mentioned:

 Pasmia's gear list:Pasmia's gear list
Olympus E-M5 II Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 9-18mm F4.0-5.6 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 40-150mm 1:4-5.6 Olympus 12-40mm F2.8 Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 25mm F1.8
Olympus PEN E-P5 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2
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