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Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Why I love the Canon EF 40mm

By Richard M. Reyes

I love the Canon EF 40mm lens ( for a number of reasons.  The order below most likely represents the order of importance:

1. Sharpness/Focus
2. Lightweight
3. Portable
4. Quiet
5. Good for photo and video
6. Price

This is a very sharp lens.  I have used this lens on a number of different camera bodies and the results are always sharp: Canon 5D Mark II, Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon EOS 60D, and Canon EOS SL1.

Canon website referenced above lists the weight at 130 grams.  When I pair this lens with the Canon EOS SL1, I can shoot all day without having to put the camera down because I am tired.  I can keep shooting from morning till night (or until the camera batteries are fully drained-whichever comes first).

This lens has been referred to as a pancake lens.  Like a pancake it does not extended much in front of the camera compared to other medium telephoto to zoom telephoto lenses.  While it is more noticeable on a camera body such as the Canon EOS SL1, it is hardly noticeable on professional bodies on the 5D and 1D series.

It is quiet because it uses Canon STM technology.  This is Canon's Stepping Motor that is designed to make shooting video a quiet experience.  Non STM lenses typically tend to be noticeably noisy when shooting video.

Good for photo and video
Because it uses an STM lens motor it is quiet and fast enough that it is good for both photography and video.

It is about $149.00.

I have long been a fan of Ken Rockwell's article reflecting his motto of "Don't Worry: Just Shoot".  Just as in the article, it probably took me about 5 years of worrying about what gear I have instead of just shooting.  This article reflects my departure into the journey of "just creating better pictures."  Ken, I have quoted you because although I have read your article a whole lot of times, it took a little while to live it.  For a more technical review with examples please check out Ken Rockwell's review of the Canon 40mm (

I do encourage the photographer to be proficient with their equipment.  That is a smart way to make the most of what you have and know the limitations.   However, take the time you would have spent comparing even more specs and just shoot (photographs).

PDN Photoplus Conference and Expo - October 21-24, 2015

By Richard M. Reyes

If you are a photo enthusiast or even a photo professional, you most likely have PDN PhotoPlus International Conference + Expo already on your calendar.  This year's conference will be on October 21-24, 2015 and the expo will be from October 22-24, 2015 at the Jacob Javits Center Convention Center.  The best part this year is that the 7 train (New York City Subway's IRT Flushing line has been extended 1.6 miles from its prior end station at the heart of Times Square) to the 34th Street - Hudson Yards (

Having attended the last few conferences, this event will leave you with something new to ponder.  Yes, it is a great place to find out the latest greatest gadgets (lenses, cameras, backdrops, lighting) and technological advances the photographic and imaging industry has made.  However, this is also a great time and place to learn things you have always wanted to learn but never had the time.  The best part is that you have the opportunity to learn from the best (from wedding, landscape, models to photojournalistic genres).  You can even see the work of some up and coming and veteran digital film makers.  The website says you can also attend "over 100 educational seminars, Photo Walks and Master Classes"

When I was originally interested in learning all I could about getting started in Wedding photography, I attended PDN Photoplus.  I had the chance to learn and personally meet: Rick Sammon ( among my favorite landscape/nature photographers; Bob & Dawn Davis ( - a husband and wife team who are one of the premier Chicago and Destination Wedding photographer based in the United States-and some of the warmest professionals you will ever meet; and even see Vincent LaForet ( who was one of the pioneers of using the Canon 5D Mark II as an artistic and production tool for cinema. They do share one thing in common.  A great talent to visualize and use their equipment as an extension of their imagination.  The camera for them is like a painter's brush.  The images they create are full of wonder and vibrant in color.

It is also a great place to meet new and old friends and colleagues who share the same interest as you.  According to the website you can join "21,000 professional photographers, photography enthusiasts, filmmakers, students and educators from around the world."

For more information on how to attend, please go to:

American Minute

A Decision to Love Online Gallery