The Long and the Short of It: Wide-Angle and Telephoto Macro Lenses - Trust Me Shops
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The Long and the Short of It: Wide-Angle and Telephoto Macro Lenses

The Long and the Short of It: Wide-Angle and Telephoto Macro Lenses

Short Description:
Even though macro photography is one of the more dynamic genres of photography, physically it’s also one of the most static.

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Even though macro photography is one of the more dynamic genres of photography, physically it’s also one of the most static. It’s also usually performed in controlled situations, with the option to work from a tripod at whichever working distance is available. For these reasons, and out of convention, most macro lenses available feature normal to short telephoto focal lengths. The focal length of a macro lens typically isn’t one of the special attributes of these lenses, at least compared to their close-focusing, high-magnification capabilities. However, this isn’t a hard and fast rule, because there is, in fact, a range of macro lenses available with some more unique focal lengths; there are high-magnification optics outside of the comfortable 60mm to 105mm focal-length range in which most people work.
Before diving into these specific lenses, you might be thinking “why would I want a wide-angle or medium-telephoto macro lens? And why would I want anything besides the 90mm or so lens I already have?” Just like with any other “which lens should I choose?” circumstance, it boils down to what kind of look you’re trying to achieve. The key difference with macro, though, is that you are working at close range or at higher magnifications. This typically leads to the subject filling the majority of the frame, regardless of the focal length with which you’re working. And even with these more specialized wide-angle and telephoto options, you are still likely to fill the frame with the subject, but with a more dramatic focal length, you gain some additional consequences, namely in the realm of depth of field. Just like photographing a landscape with an ultra-wide lens versus a normal-length lens, you’d choose the ultra-wide if extreme depth of field was a concern. This holds true at close range, with wider focal lengths able to produce greater depth of field at a similar focusing distance. And, conversely, telephoto options are there for selective focus, as well as working from greater distances. In the macro world, this might only mean another foot or so away from your subject, but this can make a big difference if you’re trying to place lights in front of your camera or if your subject is a bit more skittish. With these distinctions in mind, here are the macro options at the wide and long ends of the focal length spectrum.

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