What lens I use won't ever matter to you
I get this question the most “what did you use to get that shot”.
To be honest, it won’t really help you. I can give you rules, and what they mean for your work, and that can really help, but settings, and lenses. Will not improve your work long term.
I say this because this is probably holding you back right now.
This is because there are so many other factors that go into creating a show, learning those, and figuring out what you want to create will allow you to create original work. It’s not really going to mean much unless you know why I did what I did.
So instead, I’m going to suggest something radical, if there’s a photographer you love, or work you really want to be doing, start looking for the techniques behind the work.
For example if someone shoots film, instead of looking up what films they’re using, look up how to correctly expose film, or what rules you need to know about shooting film, bw vs colour, slide vs negative, rangefinder vs slr, medium format vs large format vs 35mm. Etc.
The best way is to invest in your education around learning the rules, and why they matter. I’m steeped in privilege saying this. I’ve never studied photography but I was in and out of studio’s from a young age (my father ran one), and I can tell you, most of the time they were shooting above 5.6 and to create depth they used light.
So I’ll offer this “cheat” and a few rules:
New photographers create depth in their work with larger apertures, more experienced photographers do the same with light.
This means look up lighting techniques
Looking up lighting modifiers
What are the best times of day to shoot at (hint, there are some good apps for this)
There are plenty of online courses from RGG EDU, CreativeLive, Adobe, and Youtube.
Hint: the paid ones are worth it.
Learn a new technique before buying a new piece of equipment.
Every-time I break equipment (which I do a lot) I adapt, and that’s usually when I learn something new.
Don’t switch systems (Canon, Nikon, Sony, Hasseblad, Profoto, Broncolor, Godox, Apple, Windows, etc, practically all systems will help you do the job)