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Old Oct 12, 2009, 10:09 PM   #2
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,529

The real issue you're going to encounter is that you may have difficulty getting fast enough shutter speeds indoors with artificial light and no flash - even with an f1.8 lens. Such lenses are great when you've got windows and daylight coming in and people are relatively still. But when you're dealing with normal household lighting in the evening with no sunlight you may be looking at 1/30 or 1/15 shutter speeds. Slight head movements will show as blur without flash. So, 1.8 lenses are great when you can count on your subject staying still or you have the aid of sunlight. When you can't then flash is the only reliable alternative. In general, I love available light photography. And, shooting a lot of indoor sports I do a lot of low light work - but with lighting better than you find in a house. When kids are involved, 99% of the time I use an external/bounced flash because I just can't rely on them staying motionless for 1/15 of a second. I do like to break out my 85mm 1.8 when I know the opportunity for a good available light shot exists. But that's the exception rather than the rule. I just caution that if you buy a 35mm 1.8 type lens you may end up still being disappointed that shots have motion blur - and IS does nothing to compensate for the fact your subject moved their head slightly.

You also need to be aware that such wide apertures make for narrow depth-of-field. Which makes it very difficult to have more than one subject in focus if they're not posing for you.
Some examples taken with bounced flash. In all instances these shots would not be possible with 1.8 lens (slow shutter speeds due to insufficient light or need for greater DOF than 1.8 would allow).

JohnG is offline   Reply With Quote