The Only Lens Tutorial You'll Need (Plus: Vikings)

Lenses. They're your most powerful photographic tool, if you know how to harness their mighty power (and manage not to shatter them). And you know what? Chances are that even if you think you're a lensmaster, you've still got a lot to learn. And these guys are going to teach you.

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Vimeo's Blake Whitman and all-around camera genius Vincent LaForet learn you good in the video-sharing site's original series, starting with the basics, leveling up to focal length, and capping off with depth of field. You're not going to find a better 15-minute photography primer, especially not for free, and double-especially not with a viking and an astronaut peaceably co-mingling. [Vimeo]

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DISCUSSION

I need the part about zoom lenses and how they get dimmer as you zoom in. Most of them. I also need the part about image stabilizers and how some are better than others. I need the part about fisheye lenses. I need the part about how primes magnify the image as you focus closer, but zoom lenses actually shrink the image as you focus closer. Some of them. I need the part about how lenses that are only so-so for still photography show up as being really sharp when shooting video with the same camera. I need the part about how diffraction affects images at higher f-numbers. I need the part about how you can't put Canon lenses on Nikon cameras, but you can put Nikon lenses on Canon cameras. I need the part about how this one lesson said it all, again.