The Sony a7 Mirrorless Full-Frame Camera
My first TFP portrait session shoot was with my Sony a7 and the Sony Zeiss 55mm 1.8 lens. The shoot was a small collaboration with one of my good friends Kayla, and a whole lot of beautiful natural light. Kayla joined me at a local park across the street from my home and I started my portrait photography journey with the Sony a7.
Why I chose the Sony a7
After doing tons of research on cameras, I knew I wanted to try a mirrorless camera and sony was quickly becoming a leader in that space at the time. I originally looked at the Sony a6000 crop sensor mirrorless camera, but I ended up getting suckered into purchasing the Sony a7. Little did I know it was the perfect camera for me. It had some great features including:
- 24 megapixel full-frame sensor
- Great styling in a small camera body
- Face detection for portraits
- Sony 28-70 kit lens came with body
- Full HD Video capturing capabilities
- Wi-Fi connection and image transfer to my iPhone
- Tilting screen for low angled shots
I didn’t understand all the other technical specs from the box, but I knew these stood out to me the most. I was a new photographer looking for a new camera, and the salesman sold me on it!
Lenses for my Sony a7
The first lens I purchased was the Sony Zeiss FE 55mm f1.8 lens. At the time, the only other lens I had was the Sony FE 28-70 kit lens that came packaged with the camera. I remember wanting an 85mm lens for portraits, but there was no option on the market. The closest was the Sony 90mm macro lens.
I shot with my Sony 55mm prime lens for over a year before I looked at other lenses. I rented a few zooms like the Sony 24-70mm f4, but I liked the bokeh I got from shooting with primes. You can check out my camera bag and the rest of my equipment here as of late 2017.
What I like about the Sony a7
The Sony a7 has a light full-frame body and allowed me to have my camera with me all the time that first year. The Sony 55mm f1.8 was a small lens, so this combo made it into so many places without drawing too much attention.
The image quality has been superb, and the RAW files allow me to do lots of post editing with Photoshop and Lightroom. RAW is my preferred format and often transfer JPGs during my shoot for behind-the-scenes social posting and more.
I now have a small battery grip from Meke on the camera, and this really helps with portrait orientation. I can customize many of the buttons and dials to my liking, which makes things fast for shooting.
Is the Sony a7 for new photographers
YES! I truly believe it is a great starter camera for many new photographers looking for a full frame starter camera. I always recommend renting a few camera bodies first and trying out a few systems before making a purchase. As of this article, you can purchase a used Sony a7 for around $900 which is not bad at all. There are now more lens options to choose from so get out and start shooting.