Click Pro Lisa Tichané recently added the Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L II USM EF lens to her arsenal. Its features were quick to grow on her. Here are the characteristics that are appealing to her the most:

  1. Definitely the bokeh! It’s already awesome at 70mm and it becomes seriously dreamy at 200mm!
  2. Compression. I love the fun, lifestyle feel of a wide-angle lens (I use them very often too), but sometimes the gorgeous compression that comes with shooting between 100 and 200mm is just unbeatable. I love how it isolates your subject from the background, giving center stage to the emotion captured.
  3. I absolutely love the fact that I can get the amazing quality of a Canon L lens in a zoom. I’ve heard so many times that you can’t beat the image quality of a prime lens, but seriously, those who believe that have never tried the 70-200L!

portrait of mom holding daughter up in the air by Lisa Tichane 1

Why did you decide to add it to your gear bag?
I really, really wanted a lens that would give me those awesome portraits with dreamy bokeh and beautiful compression, and for that I needed a long focal length. This is actually the reason why I purchased the 135mmL a few years ago. However, as much as I love my 135mm (seriously, the bokeh is to die for!) it doesn’t truly fit my shooting style. I’m addicted to fast movement. I love chasing toddlers around and catching wild action that is often unpredictable. And for that, you really need a zoom. Sometimes your feet just aren’t fast enough to follow some unexpected, crazy moment (but you don’t want to miss it because those moments are always the most memorable ones!). The 70-200mm was my best option: bokeh + compression combined in a zoom lens!

photo of kid running in a field by Lisa Tichane 2

What do you feel this lens has done to expand your capabilities? Has it opened up new shooting opportunities for you?
I was surprised to see how much it changed the way I shoot. I tend to interact with my subjects a lot and be really close to them. When you use a 200mm focal length, this is not an option anymore, you have to step back (and sometimes quite far away if you want to capture the whole scene!). I had to adapt the way I directed my subjects, giving them more space and taking a fly-on-the-wall approach, because the action was suddenly out of my control due to the distance between my subjects and me. It was a little unsettling at first, until I realized that it was allowing me to capture things differently, with a new perspective, and that it was actually giving me many more creative opportunities!

backlit picture of child running in a field by Lisa Tichane 3

What types of sessions do you mainly use it for?
I always bring it with me for outdoor family sessions. I might not use it as my only lens (although I’ve done it several times and those sessions are some of my favorites, so I should probably do it more often!), but I will definitely use it at least 50 percent of the time. I will get those dreamy close-up portraits with it, and I will also use it to place myself far away from my subjects and catch those candid moments that happen because they totally forget that I’m there.

photo of mom and daughter hugging by Lisa Tichane 4

How did know it was a keeper?
The first time I knew I was having a true love affair with this lens was a couple of months after I purchased it, when a favorite client of mine asked if I could shoot a swimming pool session. All she wanted were natural pictures of her family in action, having fun in the pool. The zoom capabilities of the 70-200 allowed me to take so many fantastic images that I would never have had with my other lenses. I was able to stand on one side of the pool and still catch a fun moment happening on the other side as if I were right next to my subjects. I had a blast!

happy pic of kid jumping into a swimming pool by Lisa Tichane 5

photo of family playing in the pool and laughing by Lisa Tichane 6

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All images by Lisa Tichané