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Last year, Sony announced the newest R series camera, the Alpha 7R V. This model will join the acclaimed line of Alpha mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras, building upon the success of its predecessors with an all-new 61.0 MP full-frame back-illuminated Exmor R CMOS sensor.
Pulitzer Prize-winning celebrity photographer Brian Smith was quick to stop by the Sony Creative Space to be one of the first people to try out the new Sony a7R V. He immediately posted his shots of the performers from Phoenix Entertainment NYC on Instagram, effectively catapulting the a7R V into further stardom.
Why are Sony Alpha a7R Cameras so popular for celebrity photoshoots and celebrity photographers? In this article, we discuss the different features that make the acclaimed line perfect for portraiture.
Notable users of Sony Alpha a7R cameras
Brian Smith’s endorsement of the a7R V was well-received due to his established reputation within the industry. He is known to have worked with various celebrities over the past several decades, including Anne Hathaway, Kim Kardashian, Paula Abdul, George Clooney, Bill Gates, and many more.
Other top celebrity photographers also endorse Sony’s acclaimed line. Zusha Goldin, for instance, has made use of the Sony A7 II and A7 III in his storied career, where he has captured the likes of Courtney Cox, Selena Gomez, and Sir Patrick Stewart. Even Annie Leibovitz, who is on her way to becoming the richest photographer in the world, was recently spotted shooting for Lincoln Continental with Sony FE 24-70 F4 on a Sony mirrorless camera — which fans believe to be the a7R II.
Features of Sony Alpha a7R cameras
The latest Sony a7R V is one of the highest quality and resolution cameras that Sony has to offer. However, the a7R IV and the other mirrorless digital cameras in Sony’s line, such as the a7R III, are still clear favorites within the industry. The upgraded Detail Reproduction of the a7R III is noted to accurately reproduce skin color, which is advantageous for portrait shooting, and the a7R II still holds the title of being the world’s first full-frame sensor with back-illuminated structure.
In fact, a 2023 survey found that the Sony a7 III is the most popular camera used by professional photographers, despite being over four years old. This tells us that the different features of Sony Alpha cameras are timelessly optimized for portraiture and other photography styles:
Full E-mount series
The a7R line accommodates a special range of lenses by Sony called the FE-series. These are intended to take advantage of the a7R’s full-frame sensor, allowing for a shallower depth of field and mesmerizing bokeh. Even zoom lenses like the Sony FE 24-70mm f/2.8 GM II can be used to create nice background portraits thanks to the ultra wide-angle that captures both the celebrity and their environment.
The a7R line accommodates a wide range of camera accessories as well. In fact, Sony had to specially release the SmallRig Accessories Ecosystem for the Sony Alpha 7 IV. This includes a dedicated L-bracket, a baseplate, and a full cage. The ARRI Locating top handle allows celebrity photographers to capture cinematic low-angle shots, and the hinge arm design of the full cage ensures that quick battery swaps are possible during long shoots.
Real-time recognition AF
The deep learning technology of the Sony Alpha line supports powerful Real-time Recognition AF. As of the a7R V, there are seven subject options, including Human, Animal/Bird, Animal, Bird, Insect, Car/Train, and Airplane. This allows the camera to detect human forms and poses seamlessly, following the eye and body movements even of celebrities who are less accustomed to modeling.
There are many other features that celebrity photographers can anticipate from Sony’s Alpha line. Photographer Nicholas Sherlock showed how his Sony camera could connect to the DALL-E 2 App and generate additional AI images to a real motif almost in real-time. This opens a range of possibilities for what celebrity photography could look like in the future.