Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Exercise–Focal Lengths

This exercise is to look at the effect of changing the focal length of the lens on the amount of view you can take in at one time. I went down to the coast for this, the weather was not as good as I would have liked and the light was very changeable.

untitled-1110211                                         1. Taken with  the widest end of a zoom lens – 14mm (equivalent to 28mm).
untitled-1110204                                                    2. Taken at 45mm  (longest end of original zoom lens).
untitled-1110205                                       3. At 200mm – equivalent to 400mm, (longest end of a longer zoom lens).
untitled-1110200                    4.  Also 200mm, taken from the same spot as the last photo but with a very slight change of angle.
untitled-1110185-2                                           5. A slightly different angle of view using the 14mm (wide angle) zoom.
It is clear that one can markedly alter the amount of view seen by changing the focal length from an almost panoramic shot (if cropped) to what appears to be a close up. It is also interesting that with the longer focal length a very small shift in angle gives a completely different picture – while a similar shift in angle with the wide lens makes much less difference.
Lessons Learned:
1. Think carefully about what the picture is showing and (when possible) use an appropriate focal length.
2.  A combination of different focal lengths may tell the story better than just one.
3.  A telephoto lens may allow one to get pictures that are otherwise unobtainable. ( I would have had to be on a boat to get picture 4 without this lens).

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