Portraits: The Other Use of Macro Lenses

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We all know that macro lenses are used for close-up work with small subjects. What some do not know is that true macro lenses (those capable of a magnification of 1:1) are also great to use for portraits.

Lens Quality
Macro lenses are designed to be extremely sharp since it is designed to capture the smallest details in your subject. This gives you good tonal gradation which is extremely important if you want to capture high quality portraits.

Wide Apertures
Macro lenses are designed to be very fast. On the average, the widest aperture setting for macro lenses is around f/2.8. This makes it great for throwing the background out of focus and is fast enough to capture crisp images with only natural lighting.

Telephoto Capabilities
The most common focal length you will find for high quality macro lenses are at 100m. This focal length gives you the ability to fill the frame with your subject without crowding them. It also eliminates barrel distortion associated with wide angle lenses.

The only downside with using macro lenses for portraitures is that they are prime lenses. This means that the focal length of the lens is fixed and you have to physically move around if you want to change your composition.

Lisa will be blogging about portraits later on.

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