Why I HATE Using Only One Lens for Landscape Photography

This article is a follow up my previous article, so make sure you check that out before reading further. Or do what you want – this is the internet, there are no rules.

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As much as I love restricting myself creatively, a one-lens setup definitely isn’t perfect. There are definitely a lot of benefits that outweigh the negatives, but the negatives shouldn’t be ignored.

If it breaks, my shoot is over.

The 24-70mm isn’t my only lens, but currently it’s the only one that fits my filter system without an array of step up rings. If anything happens to that lens during a shoot, whether it’s local or travelling, I’ve got nothing else to use that will do the job as well. That type of vulnerability is scary and potentially dangerous to my career.

Faster decay.

Having said the above, because it’s always in use (particularly in wet, salty and sandy conditions) naturally it’s going to see more damage and come to the end of its life sooner. While I take care of my gear and clean everything regularly, it’s no doubt that the elements are getting to bits I can’t reach and causing damage in places I can’t see. If it was in my bag while another lens was in use, it would last longer.

Limitations are real.

I’ve praised limitations in creativity before, and it was one of the selling points in my last article, but sometimes it can be hindering. With 24mm not being wide enough, panoramas are an option. But if I want something with more reach than 70mm, it’s tough luck for me. This is the most restricting thing I’ve found with the lens, as 70mm on a full frame sensor (even with 42 megapixels) doesn’t always give me enough to work with.

 This image would be much stronger if I had a longer reach – 85mm probably would have been perfect. Given the low light situations, cropping in will only degrade the quality.

This image would be much stronger if I had a longer reach – 85mm probably would have been perfect. Given the low light situations, cropping in will only degrade the quality.

Is f/4 fast enough?

For most situations, yes considering I’m usually between f/8 and f/11 anyway, but certain situations that call for a more shallow depth of field (like astro) can be challenging. I’ve certainly shot at f/4 before when I’m looking for that blurry background, and it’s been a great option, but I feel like it needs to be mentioned in all this. If anyone wants to buy me the f/2.8 model, drop a line to the usual address.

 

So by no means am I ruling out expanding my kit, but despite all of these set backs I’m very pleased with how my minimalistic setup is working out for me.