Canon RF 85mm F1.2 L Lens for a Graduation Portrait

Another milestone was reached, and I was given the green light for a graduation photo shoot. Getting ready took two hours longer than originally planned, but a couple of hours of sunlight still remained as we went out the door.

Just inside of shade is usually a great choice for portrait lighting, and we started with that option. The background is usually a large percentage of the composition, so selecting a good one is important, and large columns usually work great.

Columns this large are typically found at institutions, and they provide a sense of place that is valued in university graduation photos. More to that point, these columns were in front of the building where most of her classes were held, adding relevance to the composition.

While several other lenses were along and used, the Canon RF 85mm F1.2 L USM Lens on an EOS R5 was my first choice for this shoot. This combination produces standout portraits at f/1.2, with impressive resolution and contrast, and the incredible 85mm f/1.2 background blur is especially advantageous.

The background blur reduces distracting lines of contrast behind the subject, especially for their head. In this case, the subject was aligned on the column to fully eliminate that issue.

I lost a few points for the edge of the graduation gown sleeve intersecting the line of the column's edge. A good photographer always has an excuse ready, so I'll blame feeling rushed for that one.

Camera and Lens Settings
85mm  f/1.2  1/1250s
ISO 100
5464 x 8192px
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