Zoom with your feet!

"The Look..." by Thomas Leuthard

This street portrait ("The Look...") by Thomas Leuthard, required the photographer to approach his subject quite closely, eliciting the lovely and cautious aforementioned "look". The proximity of photographer can in fact be seen in the window. (cc-by)

If you’re a photographer snapping on a prime lens for the first time, you might be given the glib advice that you’ll have to “zoom with your feet.” Be sure not to take this the wrong way…

"Ehsan the Shooter" by Hamed Saber

“Ehsan the Shooter” by Hamed Saber (cc-by)

On the surface, this injunction may sound like a mockery of the technological simplicity of the humble prime lens. ¬†Unlike the plethora of ranged zoom lenses that have become commonplace among modern photographers, the prime lens (or fixed lens) shoots at one focal length only–in other words, it can not zoom.

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