50 mm or 35 mm

50 mm or 35 mm?

Hi Christian,

I was wondering if you could help me with a question. I am planning on shooting at my sis-in-law’s wedding as a second/backup photographer. Of course it’s an unpaid job but that’s not as important as to me as the opportunity I get in building my portfolio. Since my ultimate aim is to go full pro, getting the right lenses is important to me right from this early stage, although my camera is currently a crop-sensored one (D7100 – going full frame is in mind for the future though). Okay so, one of the lenses in my kit bag is a 50mm 1.8G fx amidst others like Sigma 70-200, 8mm fish eye, 18-140mm (which I am seriously considering returning since not many wedding photographers rave about it), and a 105mm macro which I intend to add to the bunch soon. The issue at the moment is that I am torn between keeping the 50mm or replacing it with 35mm 1.8 DX. Reason is ‘cos unlike the 35mm, the 50mm which on a crop sensor is effectively a 75mm, doesn’t seem to give much wide angle say if I wanted to take a group picture unless I move back (away from the subjects) a lot of the time. On the other hand though, I fancy the idea of being able to use the 50mm fx when i move on to full frame cam (unlike the 35mm 2.8g dx), so I am really trying to decide whether to keep the 50mm and do a bit of body adjustment from the subjects should the need arise to get a wider angle? or is the 35mm definitely a better choice than the 50mm in a wedding photographer’s world? Kindly give your professional advice on this pls. Hope to hear from you soon.


And oh, i’ve thrown this same question to other pro’s i’ve sub’d to on youtube, with the hope of getting a good mix of answers. thanks in advc

Bus Lan



thank you for your question. There is no correct answer to this. Each lens is better for a different purpose. The 50 mm will give you a better portrait than a 35 mm. A 35 will give you a wider angle. It is like choosing between an apple and an orange…2 different things

For a wedding I am always recommending and zoom lens for the flexibility. I use a 24-70 F2.8 and that allows me to cover the 35mm and the 50 mm. I do not have to move and I can shoot from various distances.

A prime lens like the ones you talk about have disadvantages on this topic.

I will never give up any lens, so instead of replacing, I would add the 35 mm and have more lenses. It is very difficult to do a wedding on a fixed lens and no matter the choice, you will be constrained. Also make the effort to get a second body maybe to have both lenses in the same time on you


I hope this helps





About Christian Tudor

professional photographer, main editor at Academy of Photography and owner and principal photographer of Tudor Photography