Sunday, 31 January 2010

Exercise One – Focal Length and Angle of View

This exercise required three photographs taken at differing focal lengths, the first a near life like, the second with the camera at is shortest focal length, and the final image wit the camera set to its longest focal length. For this exercise the camera was set to automatic and only the focal length was changed.

Starting with an image of the Chimonanthus praecox (Winter Sweet) that grows outside of the house, this was taken with the view through the viewfinder looking the same to that seen by the unaided eye.

Much of the detail and interest of the primary object of the picture, the shrub, is lost, due to the inclusion of the background.

The result is what comes across as a messy image.

1/125 sec

A second shot was taken, with the lens set to its widest setting, this time at 18mm. Compared to the previous image that overall picture seems much better inasmuch at least the entire shrub is visible. The initial photograph did not show all of the plant, this image allows the viewer to see the overall plant in respect to its surroundings, giving a better understanding of the plant, but still lacks impact.

ISO 400

The final shot in this set was taken with the lens set to its furthest telephoto setting. This focuses the attention on the flowers of the plant, and eliminates much of the distracting background that surrounds the plant that was seen in the previous two.

Also, zooming into the image has had the effect of throwing much of the background out of focus, again, allowing the primary area of interest, the flowers, to grab the viewers interest.

While this improves the overall effect of the picture, this could have been improved by moving the camera to have less sunlight of the branches behind the flowers to further highlight the flowers.


While zooming in improves the overall effect of the third picture in the above set of images, this may not always be the same for a different set of images. The set below was taken looking out across the fields at the back of our house.

ISO400 18mm f11 1/320sec

This image shows a good view of the fields taken from the garden, with the foreground forming a frame that leads the viewer to the objects seen in the distance.

More light on the foreground may have improved the dark areas that are a bit harsh compared to the background.

ISO400 59mm f13 1/400sec

ISO400 200mm f10 1/500sec

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