If I could only have two lenses…

two lenses for a wedding day

When I first decided to do something with photography, it was really important to not only me, but to Steven as well, that I did NOT start my business by going into debt. Everything I have purchased for my business I have bought after saving up for it and paying for it with money I had in my bank account. That was HARD to do, because it was so easy to look at what everyone else had for gear and all the incredible things they were doing in their businesses! I’m grateful to have started this way because it really taught me that it’s NOT about the gear, but about ME and what I choose to do with it! There’s so much more than just pointing the camera and snapping a photo!!

Anyway, I didn’t have a lot of gear when I first started out. I rented lenses here and there for weddings until I was able to start building up my photography gear! So today’s post is for the newer photographers who don’t have a lot of money to spend on really expensive lenses. If I had to pick just two lenses to shoot an entire wedding with, it would be the 50mm and the 105mm lenses. My 50mm was my first lens and I shot a significant portion of a wedding day with that lens alone! You do NOT need to have a wide variety to get stellar photos! You just need to know what to do with your camera!

Okay, here’s why:

50mm lens: This is great for EVERYTHING. You can get detail shots, group shots, and amazing portraits! I love my 50mm and I believe a common name for this lens is the “nifty fifty” because it is so versatile! The only thing that can be a struggle with this lens is super wide shots. You can still do it, but you have to zoom out quite a bit with your feet!

105mm lens: This lens is awesome for two reasons – killer detail shots, and it also doubles as a great portrait lens! This lens is also GREAT for when you are shooting a ceremony! You can still be a little ways back and still get beautiful photos that are still fairly close!

Between these two lenses I can get every single photo I need on a wedding day and feel really good about the work I produce. In all fairness, I don’t actually own the 105mm lens yet, but I’ve used it before and I LOVE what it can do! In the meantime, I have a pretty big zoom lens that I use for ceremonies and I have macro extension tubes that work great for my ring shots! However, these are the two lenses I would definitely recommend to any new photographer! I’m not an expert, but in my experience, you can do a phenomenal job with these two!


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  1. […] If you missed a recent blog post about the two lenses I would bring with me if I could ONLY have two, check it out here! […]

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You can usually find me adding books to my never-ending “to read” list; challenging myself to do things like not shop for a year; sneaking crispy m+ms from my secret hiding spot so I don’t have to share them with my daughter; and melting over seeing my children smiling at each other.

Oh and I guess I should mention - I’m a seasoned Portland wedding photographer who provides not only kick-ass wedding photos, but also a meaningful and laid-back experience from the time you book to the delivery of your final images. 

I share all things personal, business, tips, and life as a mom and business owner here on the blog!

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i'm a mama of two, a razzleberry peace tea hoarder, and a photographer

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