What's the very first lens you should buy?

Q: What's the first lens I should buy? 

The very first lens that I bought? I shipped it on its merry little way to Adorama's used department years ago. I remember looking at lenses the summer after high school and wondering, how could they charge more for a fixed lens?

*Fixed lens: fancy term for a lens that doesn't zoom.

Your lens needs will be different based on what you photograph: real estate, food, weddings, seniors, newborns, your own kiddos, etc. But I think there is a go-to lens that works for each situation (aside from sports photography)! That lens?

The Canon 50mm L f/1.2

I think it's so versatile that it is the perfect "first lens" for you regardless of what you specialize in. If you can't afford the L series glass, try out the Canon 50 1.4.

Related: What's in my digital bag

What's the first lens you should buy?

3 tips for buying a lens

Rent before you buy!

When I was still adding to my camera bag, I liked working with  Borrowed Lenses! I don't suggest going into debt for a lens, so if you need something that you can't afford, create a budget to rent that lens!

Related: How to Market Yourself and Find Clients When You're First Starting!

Understand your style!

Everyone has a different vision! If you have to just pick one lens, go with one that will let you get close to your subject/object and shoot from a distance without distortion.

A wedding photographer that specializes in small chapel weddings would also like the Canon 35 1.4 because they would have more room to move around!

Related: 5 Tips for Finding Your Photographic Voice

Think about variety!

When you're adding lenses to your collection, consider what would add something new + fresh to your final gallery!

I am not a fan of buying all the gear just because you can! Pick the lenses that are a must for you as an artist. If you think you're missing something, rent it to be sure it belongs in your gear family. We like to keep it simple: 50, 85, 100 macro, and the 70-200 zoom.

Related: The lenses I Use and How I Use Them