The Sigma 30mm f/1.4 lens is part of their Art series and has an angle-of-view equivalent to 45mm. It’s designed for APS-C format digital SLRs like the Canon EOS 60D I tested it with. The lens has a Hyper Sonic Motor (HSM) and produces quiet (for shooting video) and fast autofocus. It has Sigma’s Super Multi-Layer Coating to reduce flare and ghosting and the company includes a nicely made lens hood and case at no extra cost.
The lens itself is constructed from Thermally Stable Composite Material (aka plastic) to reduce expansion and contraction of its internal barrel but it’s high quality stuff. The 30mm 1.4 has a minimum focusing distance of 11.8-inches with a maximum magnification ratio of 1:6.8. The $499 lens has a-blade rounded diaphragm that produces beautiful bokeh especially when shot wide open While I planned to shoot the lens outdoors for some nighttime shots, an opportunity came up to use it in the studio…
How low can you go? To simulate low available light in the studio, a Bowens Mosaic daylight LED panel was placed at camera left and set at one-eighth power. No reflector was used in order to simulate a real world lighting situation. To compensate for less light being available, I bumped the Canon EOS 60D’s ISO setting to 800 and attached Sigma’s 30mm f/1.4 DC HSM lens. Exposure was 1/125 sec at f/5. A Lastolite Distressed Paper collapsible background was used
If you’re interested in shooting portraits and how I use cameras, lenses and lighting, please pick up a copy of “Studio Lighting Anywhere” which is available from your favorite book or camera stores as well as Amazon.com, where your purchase helps this blog. If you bring this book, or any of my other books, to the workshop I will be pleased to sign your copy.