If don't know why those zoom lenses with focal lengths like 18mm-55mm, 16mm-35mm or 10mm-22mm are so popular, you're not getting the most out of your DSLR. With a creative mind and a little bit of know-how behind the camera, wide angle photography creates some of the most captivating images. Let's take a quick look at how packing a WA zoom can maximize your creative capabilities.
1. Sweeping Landscapes
I'm a big fan of the “nifty fifty”, but when it comes to landscape photography, there will be times when you're not able to move to the best vantage point to get everything in the frame. With a good wide angle zoom and a little care, you've got a much better chance of getting everything you want in the frame, as in the image above.
2. Longer Lines
When you shoot in a vertical orientation with a wide angle lens, you can extend those long lines, especially if you use a low viewing angle. If your wide angle lens happens to be a zoom, you can more easily adjust to each situation.
3. Altered Perspective
With a little bit of planning and proper placement of the camera and subjects, wide-angle views can expand perspective in very unique ways.
4. Tell More of the Story
In street and travel photos, being able to open up your angle of view can help you capture the elements that give viewers a better sense of place and moment. Being able to adjust quickly can make all the difference in those genres.
5. Distortion Can be Fun
A touch of whimsy is always a good hook for a photograph and shooting close with a wide angle lens can add that touch with all kinds of subjects. Keep in mind that if you're going to do this with shots of people, you may want to be sure the subject has a good sense of humor.
6. It Doesn't Have to Cost an Arm and a Leg
One of the nice things about carrying a wide angle zoom is that you don't have to sell the farm to get a good one. There are plenty of kit zooms out there, with both Canon's and Nikon's 18 – 55mm f3.5 – 5.6 among the most well known and they're decent lenses for the price. Better yet, you can step up to USM (AF-S) lenses at a very reasonable cost by shopping around. Take a look at these 2 from our friends at KEH Camera:
With all these creative and practical advantages, it's easy to see why a wide angle zoom lens is a staple item in kits and a must-have for any well-rounded photographer's arsenal of glass.