Event Photography: Zoom vs Primes- What's your preference

Started 2 months ago | Discussions thread
hotdog321 Forum Pro • Posts: 20,716
Re: Zooms

David Pavlich wrote:

hotdog321 wrote:

jdsilvaphotography wrote:

Hey everyone!

I just got offered to be a contract event photographer for a commercial marketing agency. I just got one of their events with a 35/85mm combo. I loved the images and crispness and isolation look the primes gave. Changing the lenses was not convenient during the event though.

Event Photographers, what is your lens choice and how do you carry your camera and gear while shooting?

I carry two full frame cameras (Canon 5D IV these days). The 24-70 f/2.8II is absolutely key for events, IMO. My second body has a 70-200 f/2.8L II on it, which allows me to isolate scenes and shoot speakers. Two bodies, two zooms, one flash and I'm set to cover just about any event.

I can count the number of events I've shot on two hands, but what Craig stated is fairly standard for event/wedding shooters. My son is a wedding/event photographer and for most of the time, he has two 5DIVs, one with a 24/70 f2.8 and a 70-200 f2.8 with him.

For portrait work, he has some nice primes, but those come out when the conditions are more controlled and changing distances between shooter and subject remain fairly constant.


Yeah, I didn't stress it enough, but the flexibility and quality of modern zooms make them key tools for working photographers. I used to carry a whole bag of primes back in the film era--but I can't even remember the last time I used one other than a 300 f/2.8 or 100mm macro.

Some folks are wedded to the idea of primes, but when working crowds I find I want to shoot at f/4.5 or so for a little depth of field. A fast prime doesn't serve much purpose when working parties, crowds, galas, events, luncheons and whatnot.

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 hotdog321's gear list:hotdog321's gear list
Canon EOS 5D Mark IV Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM Canon EF 70-200mm F2.8L IS II USM Canon EF 24-70mm F2.8L II USM Canon EF 16-35mm F4L IS USM +3 more
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