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What's In My Bag: See This Pro’s Top 4 Lenses For Portraits

Miguel Quiles is a portrait photographer and Sony Artisan of Imagery with over 15 years of experience as a professional. Since his switch to Sony, he says his photography game has changed for the better. We connected with Quiles to learn more and get the inside scoop on the Sony lenses he chooses for his portrait work. We're kicking off a week of portrait content on AlphaUniverse.com with a walk through his top four favorites that always find a place in his portrait photography kit.

Miguel's Top 4 Portrait Lenses

Sony 85mm f/1.4 G Master: “I love this lens for a number of reasons. Number one – it’s really good for shooting portraits in studio. It does a great job of resolving a ton of detail and a ton of resolution. But even better, when you go outdoors or you’re shooting in low-light situations or you’re shooting in areas where maybe there’s a distracting or busy background – at f/1.4 you’re able to blur those things away or introduce more light into the camera. So I would say out of all the lenses I have here, if you had to take one of them (which would be terrible), as long as I have my 85mm f/1.4, I could probably do 75-80% of the work that I need to do.”

Sony 24-70mm f/2.8 G Master: “What I really love about this lens is that if you’re running into a scenario where you don’t know what you’re going to be shooting, you don’t know what the environment is going to be like, what the situation is going to present you, 24-70mm really covers all of your bases. You can shoot the wide-angle shots, you can shoot the tight close-up shots – which is a style that I’ve been known for, the really tight close-up portraits, and the 24-70mm allows me to do that. So if I’m not 100% sure what type of look I’m trying to go for with my portraits, this is really the go-to lens to use in that scenario.”

Sony 135mm f/1.8 G Master: “It’s kind of the new kid on the block, and I love it. For the type of work that I do where I’m shooting close-up portraits, surprisingly this does a really amazing job. You would think that for close-up work you might need maybe like a 50mm or 75mm, but people’s faces look really, really good at 135mm. And this lens not only makes them look really good at that focal length, but it does it with really good sharpness and really good clarity. And in scenarios where you need to kind of crush the background because maybe it’s distracting, you’re able to shoot at f/1.8 which is something that I’m not super used to doing with a 135mm lens – and it makes it look really awesome. I think this is one of the lenses that’s going to be in my top portrait lenses for years to come.”

Sony 24mm f/1.4 G Master: “This is a really great lens, really as a one and done. If you’re going out and you’re going to shoot environmental portraits, this really does a great job of getting all of the details, all within the frame. It does it with sharpness, with clarity, with resolution, that honestly I’ve just kind of come to expect out of the G Master line of lenses. So if you’re running into a scenario where you want to capture a lot of details and have a nice wide, environmental portrait, the 24mm f/1.4 is going to serve you really well. You can shoot it in low light, you can shoot it during the day. One of the things I love about this G Master lens is that it doesn’t have a lot of distortion. So if you’re in a scenario where you need to fill the frame with the person’s face, you’re not going to have weird things happening to the person’s face. They’re going to look good, you’re going to have straight lines – and it’s one of the main reasons I think this should be in everyone’s portrait kit bag.”


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