I want to take pictures of people from 5-20 feet away. I attend lots of group events and am free to walk around and snap photos.
I just purchased a Canon t3i and it comes with a 18-55mm kit lens. The aperture can go down to f/3.5 at the largest. However, I have a friend with a Canon 5D with 50mm f/1.8 lens and I noticed that his photos always come out nice when shooting up close. The background is always blurred.
I find that I get the shallowest depth of field when I zoom in (even if the aperture goes up), which is a problem. I don't want to have to back up from the subject to get a nice photo. If I really try, I can sometimes get the subject with a blurred background if I move in close (3ft) with a f/3.5.
So do I just need to learn how to use this lens, or would a getting a 50mm f/1.8 lens really help with taking pictures of people?