During our recent Faces and Places Photo Tour to Oman Bobbi gave a great presentation on focal length and portraiture, the short version of which is that somewhere around 85mm
on a full-frame camera is best for head and shoulder portraits and 135mm for tight head shots, as these produce the most flattering and natural results.
She also mentioned that you shouldn't shoot portraits with wide-angle lenses as they distort the perspective, making items nearer to the camera (e.g. noses) seem unnaturally large. A little later that day, while shooting with my 15mm fisheye, I shot a few images to demonstrate this point: this one, and another that I'll post tomorrow.
11.04am on 16/3/11|
Canon 5D Mark II
EF 15mm f/2.8 fisheye