Focal Lengths

The purpose for the exercise was to ‘appreciate the simplest effect of changing lenses’ and how it changes a photo.

I had to find a view that was open with details in the middle and distance. I was on a day trip and chose this replica of a Spitfire. The lake was in the distance and beyond that were the trees which provided an interesting backdrop.

35mm

I found a position on the pavement above and began shooting. First I used my standard 35-55mm lens. I decided to include the fence in the image to create an interesting foreground, the lush green grass also created contrast. A small aperture ensured that most of the image was in focus. Image

55mm

I like the close crop of this image and the fence provides symmetry. Though the focal point, the plane, is almost disappearing against the backdrop of the tree. It transports the viewer forward so they feel closer to the subject.

Image

18mm

This was taken with the wide angle lens and the viewer is immediately pulled back to view the scene and the aircraft once again starts to dissipate against the trees. It is no longer the most important element in the photo.

It feels over all, more like a landscape photo, with the grass and sky dominating most of the photo. This is to be expected however as wide angle lenses are perfect for that type of photography. Where you can include almost everything you want into the image without needing to walk far away.

Image

35mm

This photo is still with the wide angle almost the same that was taken with the standard lens. And this is so as they were taken at 35mm. But this photo feels different and more personal, closing in almost like a macro lens with the emphasis on the fence.

Image

75mm

The lens is changed to a macro and you can immediately notice the difference. The plane is isolated and the surrounding lake and a great proportion of the grass has been cut off and the viewer’s eye is drawn over the fence and towards the plane. The image itself feels rather static though, perhaps because of the central positioning of the plane, and the negative space on either side. Also the blurred fence proves to be rather distracting instead of adding to the photo like the earlier examples.

Image

190mm

With the final photo the plane fills almost the entire frame in a line with the top of the trees. I think this photo may have appeared better without the distraction of the trees, though the trees do act as a contrast of height. I would have liked to take a photo where the camera was pointed up and it appeared like the plane was flying.

Image

In conclusion I learnt a great deal about the effects of changing lenses and how each one may be suited and unsuited to certain types of photography.

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