Frank Kapusta Photography

"Images for Lasting Memories"

Why use a prime lens?

Often when a zoom lens is mentioned, what comes to mind is the convenience and versatility of a one lens do it all solution. With a zoom, light needs to pass through more glass and extra elements altering light so many times that sharpness is bound to diminish. Prime lens produces sharper images due to their simpler design, single focal length and fewer moving parts.  This also makes prime lenses smaller, lighter and cheaper to buy.

 Prime lenses have wider apertures than zooms therefore they can produce a very thin depth of field. For portrait photographers this allows for “bokeh” or that creamy out of focus look around your subject. These wider apertures also allow for excellent results in low light.

In my opinion, the most important reason for using a prime lens is that you have to slow down and think about your composition. As a point of reference, the 50mm prime lens is considered a standard lens as it closely provides the same perspective of a scene as viewed through the human eye. Keeping this in mind, it forces you to think about your lens choice and composition and in turn makes you go to great lengths to get the one great shot. This makes choosing a focal length one of the most important decisions when considering a prime lens.

Patience grasshopper!  Since we can’t zoom into a scene, we must take our time to scout, visualize, and move around to find the best location to capture an image.  The end result will be an exceptional image.

The following images were taken with prime lens using both crop sensor and full frame Nikon cameras:


Nikon D5100 - 35mm (f/1.8G): 1/30 sec @ f/1.8 - ISO 100

Nikon D5100 – 35mm (f/1.8G):   1/30 sec @ f/1.8 – ISO 100


Nikon D7100 - 35mm (f/1.8G): 1/2000 sec @ f/1.8 - ISO 100

Nikon D7100 – 35mm (f/1.8G):   1/2000 sec @ f/1.8 – ISO 100


Nikon D750 – 50mm (f/1.8G): 1/750 sec @ f/1.8 - ISO 100

Nikon D750 – 50mm (f/1.8G):   1/750 sec @ f/1.8 – ISO 100


Nikon D5100 – 35mm (f/1.8G): 1/500 sec @ f/8.0 – ISO 100

Nikon D5100 – 35mm (f/1.8G):   1/500 sec @ f/8.0 – ISO 100

My Nikon 85mm f/1.8 lens

As I continue my journey in portrait photography, I knew that I had to have this classic portrait lens. The Nikon 85mm f/1.8 AF-S is a fast maximum aperture lens that is perfect for taking head and shoulder portraits. Although designed for FX, it will also work well on DX or crop sensored cameras. Wide open the bokeh is outstanding. Although I have experimented in different environments with this glass he following imagets were taken in my studio using Alien Bees B800 with a 60″ octagon soft box as the key light and several other strobes as fill and back lights. Exposures were metered using a Sekonic L-478.  This lens has continued to exceed my expectations.  I look forward to using this in an environmental setting in the near future.



Mother and child

85mm Gray 31

There is nothing more precious that the love between a mother and her child. This image clearly reflects that love and bond.  This past weekend I spent two days shooting Vinny for his first birthday and first valentine day.  Now that his is more mobile, it took a little more work to keep him on the set.  The problem is that after 378 frames, it becomes more and more difficult to select one image over another.

The setup for this image was:

  • 60” Octagon soft box as the key light
  • 2’ x 4’ soft box as a fill light
  • Back light with a 40-degree impact grid
  • All strobes are Alien Bees B800 strobes

Camera:  Nikon 750 with Nikkor 85mm f/1.4G lens

Metered with Sekonic L-478

Hand held in manual mode: f/11 at 250/sec.


A very mild winter for our Upstate New York Community is vast under statement for this year!  According to our local TV weather station, we have only had a total of 14″ of snow all season.  Although I am very grateful for the obvious reasons of a cheaper heating season and not having to shovel or plow snow, it has been challenging to get out and chase the light, when there is no light, no shadows, or no contrast.  The limited number of days where the sun and blue skies appeared together I was otherwise engaged indoors. Every vigilant throughout the week and always armed with my “briefcase camera”, my first Nikon (D5100 and a 35mm f/1.8 lens), I make it a point to get out every Sunday morning with my tripod and gear in search of that perfect image.  Too often I end up just driving around the spots that I scoped out during the seek and come home with a clean memory card.   Scored today!  I was able to capture some nice images for my prime lens project and even exercised the super wide angle.  I have loaded a three image series today and will look to update the rest throughout the week.

Launch Date

I first  started to bring my photography into the public eye by adding Frank Kapusta Photography (FKP) to my professional profile in LinkedIn by creating a new work experience and adding a couple of images.  The response from my contacts was incredible.  I have always resisted Facebook, but understand that it is an important media tool to promote your business.  Once again, the response was incredible with the number of friends, likes and comments growing daily.

Finally, I took the plunge into the world wide web and decided to build this site. After much research, I headed to Word Press and used their quick set up.  After reviewing the free setup, I went right to a premium package as it included a registered “.com” domain.  After scrolling through the free templates and I did move up and purchased a template. Then came the build process and this is where the frustration levels started to rise.  My recommendation to anyone starting out would be to go through Word Press support.  Their support is very good and the more I worked with it the easier it got.  After working on this for a couple of hours a day for a week, my comfort level is much better.  With the basic menu and pages in place, I am happy to go public with this website.  I anticipate the expansion of the menu and pages to include additional categories into the portfolio and adding a “my gear” list to be ongoing.

So, follow me on my journey through the lens.