Which lens aperture do you choose?

Please look at the picture full size on a grey background.

I was thinking the other day about favourite lens apertures I use.

My perception was that I use the following apertures: the lens wide open a lot, somewhere in the middle around f8/11 occasionally and f22 rarely.

With new technology meta-data is saved about each picture. I used the Library Module in Lightroom to filter for all apertures used on the 21,000 pictures I have on an external hard drive. The results were interesting.

f1.2 – f2.8 1500 pictures, f4.0 2000, f5.6 2100, f8 3600, f11 4100, f16 1150, f22 1600.

The truth is that I used small aperture over a four-year much more than large ones.

My perception and reality were different. I like the look of wide apertures because it concentrates and focus the viewer’s attention to the dominant feature of the picture.

Take the picture above of dying flowers in graveyard in South Wales. It was taken with a 35mm f2 lens on a smaller sensor body in infra-red. The effective focal length was 55mm (35mm x 1.6 sensor crop factor= 56mm). The aperture used was f4.0 which nicely separates the foreground and background. Also the curving arrangement of the out focus grave stones in the back ground are appealing to me.

The split toning is gold highlights and sepia shadows. In the days of the darkroom gold toner produced a beautiful duck egg blue. This effect was produced in Lightroom.

A big hello to all the new followers of my little blog this week.

(c) Andy Beel FRPS 2012


4 responses to Which lens aperture do you choose?

  1. gamaraca says:

    Love this image Andy. I am currently using smaller apertures to capture this focus and blurred background (mostly bokehs) at the moment. The juxtaposition of this dying flower with the blurred graveyard in the background is great!


Please share your thoughts on this post

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s