Zoom with Your Feet

There are times when I tell photographers to get closer to their subjects (so I get the sentiment), but the phrase “zoom with your feet” is getting overused and the typical usage falls into the stinky realm of “all you have to do” statements. (And nothing good usually comes after the words “all you have to” or “you just have to.”)

So, for those of you who say:

  • you don’t need zooms
  • you don’t need high megapixels (in order to crop down)
  • all you need are primes and all you have to do is zoom with your feet to do good photography

… and genuinely believe this applies to ALL photography, my fondest hope is that you are speaking to those who shoot like you do (in other words, preaching to the choir), because the field of photography is vast and the demands on photographers are wide and varied. Here are some examples:

  • You may find that people generally don’t like you getting on the field to get closer to the player or athletes

too close mancikcyclist

  • Same goes or orchestra or plays. Standing in front of musicians or actors is generally frowned upon.

20151113 193003 DSCF9785 XT1_DCE

  • or you may find your subject moving quickly and you want to keep the subject as large or as small as possible

Fuji X-T1 XC 50-230mm cross country

  • or you might want to explore multiple compositions quickly before your light disappears

Fuji X-T1

If your photography allows you to get closer or far enough away to get your shot, great. But zoom lenses aren’t an evil by themselves, sometimes they are necessary to keep you safe or:

too far 2A9EF01500000578-3164105-image-m-44_1437146788492

too close article-2350516-1A8CE917000005DC-762_634x476

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