Sunday, March 1, 2015

Answers To Disney Photography Questions

I periodically check the stats for my blog, including keyword searches that lead to hits.  Over the past month or so, there's been quite a few searches related to Disney photography so I thought I would answer some of your (or someone's) questions here.

Which DSLR is the best for Disney?

In my opinion, the best DSLR for photographing your Disney (or any) vacation, is the one you own.  I don't think it's a good idea to purchase a new camera just for vacation and even worse, trying to use a brand new camera during vacation.  Even if you are staying with the same brand and just upgrading, there is still a bit of a learning curve involved and the last thing I would want to be doing during my vacation is learning my new camera.  Now, if you just plan to turn the dial to Auto and leave it there (and it's perfectly okay to do so) then it probably doesn't matter which DSLR you purchase.  I would suggest staying with entry level models.

I've read arguments via online forums suggesting that certain brands (think Nikon versus Canon) are better for specific types of photography.  For example, Nikon is better for landscape photography.  I think that's a bunch of poo poo.  I could see these arguments maybe when digital cameras were new and lenses were limited but not now and especially not for mainstream photographers, which is what we all are.

Do I need a wide angle zoom lens for Disney?

Well, this depends on what you are planning to photograph, what other lenses you'll have with you and your shooting preferences.  I shot our last three Disney trips with a crop sensor and I found my wide angle lens (Tokina 11-16m, f/2.8) to be invaluable for character meet and greet photos, especially in the restaurants.  I like to use prime lenses and my 35mm was just too tight in the restaurants and even sometimes outside.


I like landscape type photography and for me, a wide angle lens preferred.  Again, this goes to personal preferences and what you are planning to photograph.



What focal length lens is best for Disney parades?

As I've researched Disney, I've discovered that a lot of people like to photograph the Disney parades.  I tend to watch my kids' reactions to the floats and characters so the parades are less of a photography draw for me.  I do take a few photos and I've found that my 35mm lens (on a crop sensor) is sufficient.  If I was really going to photograph a parade, I think a zoom lens, such as a 28-75mm would be best but you can definitely get away with make do with what you have.



Which lens is best for photographing a Disney vacation?

Ask ten different Disney vacation photographers and you'll get ten different answers.  Lens choice can be such a personal decision.  Do you prefer prime lenses or zoom?  What is your budget?  How much gear to you want to haul around with you all day?  Which lenses do you currently own and why do you feel that they won't be adequate?  There's a lot that goes into deciding which lens(es) are best for you.


Click here to read my post Photographing your (Disney) vacation - A lens discussion


Beth said...

Did you find a speedlight necessary for indoor meet and greets?

Sarah said...

In some of the restaurants, yes - especially if it wasn't bright out or we weren't near windows. For the indoor character meets, I noticed back during our fall trip that they changed their lighting and there are now brighter lights on the characters - so I didn't need to use my Speedlight which was great. In a lot of those indoor meets, the ceilings are very high and there is nowhere to bounce the light.

Sara said...

Great post! We took our first family vacation to Disneyland in November. I rented a wide angle lens online and that was the perfect solution - I was able to borrow an expensive lens for less than $100 and I paid like $9 for a damage waiver since I was traveling with it. Just another option to keep in mind!