Poe - I absolutely second the comments. The blog posts you have are immensely helpful. I have been doing a lot of research on the 50mm vs the 35mm for wedding photography and i think my decision is to go with the 50mm. I think it's crazy just how versatile that this lens has shown to be in your post. Thank you so much from being so generous with the help & photography tips!
Katina Douglas - I am so thankful for your post!!! Extremely helpful! I would like to know what you use for lighting.
Moné - Hello, Would you still say that this is your go to lens for wedding photography/ lens that you'd use the majority of the time?
Chris brown - Absolutely stunning shots you took,I just got myself the f1.2 50mm and just trying it out as I have a wedding to do in oct and I'm so so happy with it, I got a canon 70-200mm f2.8 as well and 17-40mm f4, I think I got all basis covered but would you recommend any others? I really don't want to use a flash if I can help it and I know it will take a lot of practice to get even close to your shots, Truly amazing. Chris
Melissa Jill - Hi Kellie, Have you seen this post I did? http://www.melissajill.com/blog.cfm?postID=1321&photographing-group-portraits-that-are-in-focus I'm hoping that might help. Here is another post that might be of interest as well: http://www.melissajill.com/blog.cfm?postID=1100&back-button-focus
Kellie - Hi!, i was wondering if you could put where your focus point was on each of the photos?? i have the 50mm 1.2 and love it but having difficulty getting everyones faces in focus!
David - Beautiful photography! I'm going with the 50mm f1·2 and the same for 85 mm. Will need a ND filter too, but prime lenses are the way to go and I think you can really develop a good style without relying on zoom lenses.
Ivy Vena - Thank you so much for sharing that. I have just purchased the 50mm f1.2. I'm excited to use a much smaller and lighter lens :) Very helpful thank you.
lauren - I just got this lens and I had such high hopes. I can't for the life of me figure it out. I have used the cheapo 50 for years and loved it. I have this on a 5Dm111 and its so random. It is only sharp a small fraction of the time. I've checked things like ss and its not too low. I'm talking 400ss and 2.5 and its not sharp. I do notice it happens a lot more when I'm trying to shoot full length portraits. Am I just that bad at picking focus points? lol. Any thoughts?
Kurtz A. - Great Review, really helpful, as i was considering this 50mm 1.2 or the 24-70mm 2, just curious, how did you light up the reception? Is it off camera flashes? Thanks
Trent - stumbled across this blog from google and stoked I did. Been thinking about getting the 1.2 for days now, wrestling with it but seeing your shots and the way you describe your process of using it it has cemented my decision. Ordering tomorrow for sure! Started shooting weddings late last year and really hoping to get it cranking into a full-time gig by early next year. Thanks for sharing all this, I for one really appreciate it!
Anna Marie - Wow! I am so happy to have found your blog. I was deciding between the 1.4 or 1.2 or get the 70-200 II. I have a 5DM3 and a 60D and 24-70 mm. I'm thinking I can us the 50 mm 1.2 on my 5DM3 and the 60D with the 24-70 for now. You are awesome sharing your expertise!
Jenna Dickerson - Stumbled upon your blog on google. This is AWESOME! Great inspiration for me to use my 50mm a whole lot more! Great images!!
eric - How did u get the shot of the two little flower girls BOTH in focus @ f1.2? It looks as if the girl on the left is a step or so in back of the girl on the right.....LUCK i guess???
eric - All i can say is WOW upon looking at your amazing wedding pics! Just TODAY i traded in my 1.4 for the 1.2. To be honest for my events i use my 17-40 mainly along with my 70-200 2.8 ii.but soon to upgrade to the 16-35 since its 2.8. But after viewing your beautiful photos i think i will be utilizing my new 1.2 for most of my events (with the exception of candle lighting ceremony for sweet 16s...for this ill stick with my 17-40 due to group shots). I bet you could have gotten some amazing balcony shots w the 70-200 as well!
Latrenia Bryant - Melissa, I came across this post through google. I;m so relieved to know that it is possible to shoot a wedding with a 50mm lens! Looove your images! My fear was fumbling around with many lens. My 50 fits my simplistic style. I now have hope that my wedding images will turn out just fine :) THANK YOOOU!
Melissa Jill - Thanks Annika! No, I only shoot with one body on me. I have an assistant who carries my lenses and helps me to switch quickly. It's great because I do change a lot.
Annika - Nice lens! Do you shoot with two camera bodies at the same time, when you are using prime lenses? Or do you solve the problem with changing lenses in an other way? I really love your photography!
Mary - Just stumbled accross this post while researching a good lens for group portraiture. I own the Canon 50mm f1.2 and love it for individual portraiture. I was shocked to see you use it for group shots (so relieved that I don't have to rent a lens for this weekend). The only thing I'm not sure is how to select a focus point in a group shot. I use back-button focus. Any suggestions?
Candice - Hi, Thanks for your info. I'm finding that while using my 50 1.2 I am getting grainy images (ISO 400), and it's hard to get everyone in focus. Any tips? I'm assuming I prob need to put my aper higher, but wondering if you had other suggestions. Thanks in advance!
Michelle - Melissa, you are AMAZING for sharing such valuable information. Thank you so much! I know I use my 50 1.4 90 % of the time. I wish the 1.2 was in my budget. One day! When you have time, would you please consider using some of these same photos and telling where you focused? Thank you again, you are appreciated. xo
Brooke Summer Photography - Hey Melissa, I love the photos you've shot with this lens. My 50mm is my favorite too, although I have the 1.4. Do you think that the price jump from the 1.4 to the 1.2 is worth the cost?
shaleena - on the picture below the statement "I like to use the 50mm for the recessional as well. This image was shot at f1.2!" where was your focus point?? If you remember...
Ali - Thank you so much for the beautiful photos and good info (esp. the f number), they help a lot on making the decision
Tracy Woodger-Broz - I finally bit the bullet and purchased this lens and I LOVE it! I shot my next senior session entirely with this lens. It is such a beauty!
Laura Kelly - favourite lens ever :) i shoot nikon, but we can all unite over the amazingness of shooting wide open!
Tira J - My most favorite lens ever!!!! I think it has been glued to my 5DMarkII for the past year.
Katie - I'm love my new Mark ii, but the only lens I have for it right now is my 50mm f/1.4. It's a great lens, and I get amazing shots with it, but I'm definately going to upgrade to the 1.2 when I have the extra $$. Thanks for putting the apetures on each photo. I love seeing what you used on each of them.
Sarah Sandhaus - You should really consider using the fish eye more. ;-)
Lindsay Vallas - LOVE this post, thanks so much for sharing with us! Are you using a single focus point and changing it constantly to stay on the client's faces?
rich - we love our 50mm 1.2 too! just wish it focused faster sometimes - otherwise such beautiful stuff comes out of the lens!
Sindy - Thanks so much for this!!!
Kelly - I'm so looking forward to the rest of this series! I have the 50mm 1.4 and love it... someday I will own the 50mm 1.2. Thanks for all the helpful information!
Lisa - Just got the 50 1.4 and hope to someday get the 1.2. love this post so much. thanks for including the aps..really helps a lot. just wondering how far back you were on the group shot to get everyone in focus at 5.0. that's really amazing to me. thanks!
Ashley - I LOVE your blog posts!! We've been using our 70-200 lens for the majority of our posed and detail photos and are excited to branch out more with our newly purchased 50mm 1.4 lens. Thanks for the extra inspiration (our backs will thank you too...it's a much lighter lens!) :-)
Lisa Mathewson - Great post!! I always struggle with what lens to use. I have been using my 1.4 a lot more often. I really want the 1.2 and it's next on my list!! Now I want it even more, lol! Thanks for taking the time to post this, really helpful.
Abbey Domond - Melissa, thank you soo much for sharing everything you know. I truly enjoyed the flash series and screamed with joy when I saw that you're doing a lens series!!!! It's great to see how and why you use the lenses you do. THANK YOU!!!!!
Lisa - Hi Melissa, Doing lens posts is a great idea. Some of us could use some plain english examples. Could you add metering and AF point selection to your info as well? Metering selection can be confusing.
Kelly Green - Hi Melissa, great post! I was just wondering what ISO you used for the dark church photos.
Melissa Jill :) - Hi Casey! Thanks for commenting! I went back in the post and put the aperture for most of the images in parentheses above each. Hope this helps!
Casey - Hi MJ-Long time stalker, first time poster. hehehehe. Can you give examples of when and when not you are shooting with this lens wide open?
Saysha Baker - Always had the perception that these fixed lenses were more suited to close-ups....must admit I would be nervous to use for anything else in case I got my focal point all wrong..thanks so much for opening my eyes : )
Melissa Jean - Oh my goodness... the last full wedding shot, from the balcony, with the guests and the mountains in the distance --- sent chills through me. I'm not sure why but as soon as I saw it I just stopped breathing for a second. And I definitely have to agree, my 50mm is hands down my fav, though unfortunately I'm on a 7D. Once I finally get full frame I wonder if that'll mean I switch to loving an 85mm or keep lovin my "new" 50.
Melissa Jill :) - Shaleena & Brett -- yes! Just to clarify, I don't shoot group portraits at f1.2 :). The one in this post was shot at f5.
brett - Great post ! looking forward to this series! Whats your aperture set to for the group photos? every one looks in focus but cant imagine that an f1.2 focal plane would cover them all.
shaleena - Great start to your lens series. Question>> shooting with any lens wide open can cause focusing to be really tricky... for group shots (or images with more than one person) how do u ensure that everyone will be in focus if you are shooting at 1.2 or 1.4? How far r u away from the subjects??
Meridith - I cannot wait to upgrade to the 1.2! I have the 1.4 and really like it as well, I've been using it more and more for details and prep shots.
Sara Lin - I knew it!!! We LOVE our 50D and have really enjoyed it. Thanks for the recommendation M.