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Great Lens for Head Shots and More

Updated: Jul 3, 2018

The 135mm focal length is excellent for several purposes.

Canon 135mm f/2

The EF 135mm f/2L USM lens from Canon is one of my personal favorites. It can hide in plain site and is much more powerful than it appears.

  • Use it for street photography. It is small enough that people on the street have no idea how much reach you have with this on your camera. They will not know you have filled the frame with a pair of faces from across the street, or that you are taking a head shot from 10 feet away. It is very unassuming.

  • Use it for portrait work. Head shots are incredible with this lens. Beautiful bokeh.

  • Use it for indoor sports. Sure you could bring the 70-200mm 2.8, but this one is a whole stop faster with the image quality and bokeh of a fast prime.

  • Use it for 2nd camera work at weddings. Catch the expressions on guests faces as the bride is revealed. Take great candids at the reception - up close and personal without being in people's faces.


The Canon EF 135mm f/2L USM has been out since 1996 with no updates. This can mean two things:


1. They got it right the first time

2. This is not a major mover in the Canon lineup


The 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM is a major mover. Its Mark III version is coming out this summer, and the original has only been around since 2001. But alas, the lens-buying public has not discovered this lens just yet.

The 135mm f/2 is great for street photography, portrait work, indoor sports or 2nd camera work at weddings.

Aside from providing the amazing images you expect from a Canon fast prime, this lens is also a little more affordable than many. Rent one today and find out for yourself.


Who Needs This Lens?


Ok, this is not a lens everyone needs in their bag. I accept that. But if you participate in the types of photography listed above, you will really like having one of these in your bag. You may not use it every day. You may not use it for an entire event. But the results will speak for themselves. Those who have experienced one will tell you how much it is worth it.

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