Posts Tagged ‘lenses’

Photographic Gear – Miscellaneous

November 19th, 2017

I’ve been using the pretext of touring my camera bag to carry on a general discussion of photographic gear. So far we’ve covered the camera bag, the camera body itself, lenses and filters. In this installment we will cover miscellaneous items.

If you haven’t seen the previous articles, here are the links:

Photographic Gear – A Tour of a Photographer’s Camera Bag

Photographic Gear – the Camera Body

Photographic Gear – Lenses

Photographic Gear – Filters

To complete the camera bag tour let’s look at some of the accessories we accumulate to support our passion for photography.



Let’s begin with that little pouch in the upper right hand corner. It contains, among other things, a microfiber cloth. It is used to clean lenses and filters. It’s important that we keep everything clean including the front elements of our lenses and/or the filters we place on them.

clip_image004The microfiber cloth is designed to clean without scratching. It can clear away dust and smudges. But I prefer a no-contact method and for that I use my Giotto Rocket. It’s designed to blow dust from our sensors but it blows dust from the front of lenses equally as well. So that’s my first choice for cleaning the lens. If that doesn’t get all the dust I reach for the microfiber cloth to finish the job.

But, as good as those two things are, neither of them can clean water drops from the lens. This of course can occur when you’re photographing near waterfalls, or the surf on the ocean or, in the rain. For these situations, a small square of chamois is perfect. It doesn’t scratch the lens but it soaks up the water.

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Twelve Tips for Buying Your Next Lens

July 14th, 2012

A student of mine asked me for help in selecting a telephoto lens – what to look for and what to avoid.  I put down a few ideas for him and thought that maybe you might also find this topic interesting.

Sooner or later we all buy a lens or two or five or six.  I currently have four lenses in my camera bag – a wide angle zoom (17-40 mm, f/4), a mid range zoom (24-70 f/2.8), my workhorse lens (24-105 mm, f/4) and a telephoto zoom (70-200mm, f 2.8).

I have two ground rules for buying lenses that I have shared with many people.

1.  There must be a demonstrated need.  In other words, if you can’t realize your vision because you’re missing a particular lens then it’s time to consider adding one.  Students, friends and colleagues ask me if I think they should buy a hot new lens.  I always ask them, “What would this lens permit you to do that you can’t do with your current lenses?”  Often, the answer is that it does nothing new for them, they just think it’s a cool lens.

2.  Purchase the best glass you can afford.  You will go through several camera bodies in your career but you’ll never outgrow a high quality lens.

So those are the ground rules but what else is there?


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