I’ve always been a practical photographer: I had to have two lenses with me that cover the biggest focal range. Those two lenses were the 17-40mm f/4 and the 70-200mm f/2.8 (both Canon’s). There is a big gap between the 40 and the 70mm, but I would fill it with the 50mm f/1.4 from Sigma. I always had to have the widest and the longest focal length with me, just in case!

Sigma 24mm f/1.4 ART
Sigma 24mm f/1.4 ART

Through my career as a photographer, I always had at least one prime lens, and that was the 50mm. First the Canon 50mm f/1.8, and the last couple of years I have the Sigma 50mm f/1.4. At some point in my life, I also had the Sigma 20mm f/1.8 (a long time ago, unfortunately it broke down), Canon 100mm f/2.0 (sold it) and the Canon 85mm f/1.8 (bought a used one, sold it, and a couple of years later bought a new one, and I’ll use it until I have a chance to buy the new Sigma 85mm f/1.4 ART). Today, my prime lens setup is: Sigma 24mm f/1.4 ART, Sigma 50mm f/1.4 and Canon 85mm f/1.8.

From the left: Sigma 50mm f/1.4, Sigma 24mm f/1.4 ART and the Canon 85mm f/1.8
From the left: Sigma 50mm f/1.4, Sigma 24mm f/1.4 ART and the Canon 85mm f/1.8. The 6D is shown with a grip, which I rarely use (actually, I don’t use it at all).

In October 2016, I climbed to the TV tower Sljeme, on the Medvednica hill, and my plan was to make a photo story for the website Lice grada. I was excited to climb up there and make killer wide angle photos, I knew it would look awesome!

Unfortunately, as soon as I climbed up there and put that 17-40mm f/4 on my DSLR, it started messing with me. It couldn’t focus, the aperture got crazy, and it started showing me error on the display of my DSLR. I tried everything at that moment: pulling the batteries out, turning it on and off, removing lens… Nothing helped. Fortunately, before I went up there, I had to photograph Honda Civic so I took all of my lenses with me, which doesn’t happen very often. So, I replaced my 17-40mm f/4 with the Sigma 24mm f/1.4. It wasn’t as wide as I expected, but it did the job.

Photo taken from the TV tower Sljeme: not as wide as it would be with the 17-40mm f/4
Photo taken from the TV tower Sljeme: not as wide as it would be with the 17-40mm f/4

When I got back in the city, I immediately went to the Canon service and left it there. To make the story short, that 17-40mm f/4, for some reason (luckily!) started working when they tried it, so I didn’t have to pay for the repair. But, while I was without it (for two weeks, I think), I used the Sigma 24mm f/1.4 more often. Then I realised something… In the last couple of months, I was more and more impressed with the image quality and that special effect of the prime lenses, so I started using them more often.

Using the Sigma 24mm f/1.4 ART for behind the scenes before the GNK Dinamo Zagreb - FC Juventus match: Pavel Nedved (on the left), my favourite football player when I was much much much younger
Using the Sigma 24mm f/1.4 ART for behind the scenes before the GNK Dinamo Zagreb – FC Juventus match: Pavel Nedved (on the left), my favourite football player when I was much much much younger

Today, when I’m doing a photo story for the Lice grada or photographing car for the AutoIQ Magazine, I’m only using my three prime lenses: the 24mm, the 50mm and the 85mm. I think that range is pretty cool, but I wouldn’t mind having the 135mm also, just for more reach, but my next goal is to replace the Canon 85mm f/1.8 with the Sigma 85mm f/1.4 ART.

Taken with the Sigma 24mm f/1.4 ART: The new mural in the center of Zagreb, go to the www.licegrada.hr to check more photos of it. It's great!
Taken with the Sigma 24mm f/1.4 ART: The new mural in the center of Zagreb, go to the www.licegrada.hr to check more photos of it. It’s great!
Blurred even at 24mm!
Blurred even at 24mm!
Catching details with the Canon 85mm f/1.8
Catching details with the Canon 85mm f/1.8

Why prime lenses? When I know that the reach between 24mm and 85mm will be enough, I take only them (exceptions are sport events or similar things, then I take my 17-40mm f/4 and 70-200mm f/2.8 with me). I learned that prime lenses make you think more, use your feet for “zooming”, thinking about the right frame. Reward? Amazingly sharp images (even at aperture wide open, and I keep it opened 99% of the time!) and amazing background blur.

Photo taken a couple of days after I bought the Sigma 24mm f/1.4 ART
Photo taken a couple of days after I bought the Sigma 24mm f/1.4 ART
Mystical Tiguan, taken with the Sigma 24mm f/1.4
Mystical Tiguan, taken with the Sigma 24mm f/1.4
Tiguan again, but with the 50mm f/1.4
Tiguan again, but with the 50mm f/1.4

Carrying those three lenses makes me feel more like a photographer, and a bit less like a control freak who needs to have focal length from 17mm to 200mm all the time!

prime-lenses-30092016
From the left: Sigma 50mm f/1.4, Sigma 24mm f/1.4 ART and the Canon 85mm f/1.8

Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE wide angle images I get with the 17-40mm f/4 and the shots that only 70-200mm f/2.8 can produce, but at this moment, I love the storytelling experience I get with my three prime lenses

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