You are absolutely correct Tom I merely meant that the reason you would shoot a Brenizer portrait would be to get that shallow depth of field. Otherwise it would be simpler to just shoot a wider angle portrait with a wide lens! And of course Bokeh can be achieved by varying the distance between yourself and the subject but in most situations I find if I start to get too close the subject might become uneasy! (Especially wedding work. Maybe not so much with other portrait work where the subject may be more used to a camera in their face.)
It’s interesting that you should mention Arnold Newman as I am a huge fan of his work! I remember years ago having discussion with a fellow photographer about portrait work and I said something to the tune of “You just can’t shoot a portrait with anything wider than a 50mm!”
Of course, I was absolutely wrong and stupid for saying so but luckily he proceeded to show me the work of Arnold Newman which stopped me in my very silly tracks and made me rethink how I approached the ‘rules’ of photography fairly early on in my career! Thank god for that!
Thank you for your response, Tom!