A Camera Lens

Although I’m not sure of which camera lens I will be using yet, I believe this is a technology that is really important within my photo essay project. 

Camera Lens in a Photo Essay Project

To shoot my pictures I need to make sure that the lens that I choose or the lens that I’m given works best to photograph moving pictures. In the case of my project, I need to take into account that I will be taking pictures of people in their everyday lives so in order to capture that I need to make sure that my lens is able to adapt to any condition or setting. 

Mastering Features

These three features are basic ones that with practice I can master by the start of my project or my first photoshoot.  I will start this process by taking pictures of my friends and family so that I can practice and master these basic skills as soon as I can. 

  • Aperture:
    • Master the relationship between aperture and depth of field – wider apertures for a shallow depth of field and narrower apertures for a greater depth of field.
  • Lens Hood:
    • Learn the purpose of a lens hood in preventing lens flare.
    • Understand when and how to use it effectively.
  • Autofocus (AF) Settings vs. Manual Mode
    • Learn how to use different autofocus modes (single-shot, continuous, and manual focus).
    • Practice using manual mode to have full control over exposure settings.
    • Learn when to use each AF vs. Manual. 


A camera lens is social by its ability to bring people together and capture moments. Whether the moments are important or not, a lens allows us to take high-quality pictures that we can share with others via social media platforms or even in hard copies. For instance, we see pictures in our everyday life numerous times and this is possible because of a camera lens. We see pictures in ads, on our phones, in books, etc. 

This technology has enhanced human behavior in 3 distinct ways:

  • Increased visual communication: we can see pictures in ads, on social media, and in many other places. 
  • Global connectivity: we can share pictures across the globe (with the internet of course) in a much easier way by simply sharing an email or sharing a drive. 
  • Individual Expression: a lens serves as a tool for meaningful self-expression. As humans, we can photograph many things and give our meaning to why we believe it’s art. 

Cultural Values:

Many cultural values are associated with camera lenses. I chose the following ones because I believe they align with the content of my photo essay.

  • Documentation and Preservation: taking pictures serves as a way to store memories and when it comes to something bigger, like one’s culture it serves as a way to preserve specific important things.
  • Advocacy and Social Change: when we look at history we see that many of the most important moments were captured in a photo. This is why we’re able to look back at how things were before and make sure we learn and change so that we can all grow as a better society. 

Camera Lens as an Affordance 

The main affordance that the camera lens has especially within my project is being able to capture meaningful images that call for social change. Images that might be so powerful that people can start to forgive. 


Camera lenses are not as affordable. Instead, they can be on the higher end of the price. 

Some lenses are only compatible with specific cameras and this can be a limitation. 

Also, the camera lens I will end up using depends on the availability of the COM Gear Room. Depending on which lens I end up with there will be pros and cons.