Exercise: to create two photographs of the same subject; one from afar with telephoto lens, the other from close to the subject with the widest setting on the camera/lens.
I wanted to find an elevated place to take the photos from and my idea was to take them on a bridge close to a train station with views of parts of Coventry City Centre. I borrowed some kit for the exercise from my mum-in-law, so I had a tripod for stability, and the two lenses (see photo’s below)compatible with the Canon 500D.
I may have chosen a bad time to take photographs, in terms of the light levels (I got to the bridge around 10:45/11:00), so the photos look a little bright but I think I managed to take a view which were okay or at least fulfilled the task.
In the photograph above, taken with a shorter range lens from afar, you can see several things in the foreground, (the blurry bridge bars), in the mid-ground (the cars in the car park) and then the building with the crane in the background. The viewer gets broad sense of what’s before them, the eye has several things to take in or points of interest to move around.
In the second photograph (see above), I used a specific telephoto lens, which allowed me to focus solely in on the building/cranes just behind it. Here the viewer receives much less information, and the focal point has been strongly framed for them by the close view of the building. It becomes isolated from it surrounding context and it seems somewhat strange, although naturally our minds can accept it is probably a tall building due to the cranes behind it, we have no other visual information to reference against for information about location, size etc. It gives a very different feel to the wider shot taken before, here it feels like the viewer is forced into seeing things through the photographs eyes very directly.
As I’d not really used a telephoto lens before I played around taking a few more shots switching between lenses to see what affect they had on the scene before me.
In the images above, the Cathedral spire, is brought into focus differently. In the top image it’s barely visible towards the right of the centre of the image. But in the second image using the telephoto lens zoomed in the spire becomes the focus of the image -however the top bar of the bridge is also horribly visible/blurred in the foreground. The reason for this is I couldn’t get the tripod to stand tall enough to have the camera view over the top of the railing.
I did however play around with the focus and depth of field provided by the telephoto lens in the image below. I focused in on the bridge making a small area of it in the foreground the clearest part of the image with the Cathedral still visible (although) blurred in the background. I actually prefer this image to the one above which had the Cathedral in clear focus.
Finally I tested out the depth of field a bit more trying to focus in using the telephoto lens on a small part of the metal walls along the first half of the bridge. The result is a very short depth of field, which I kind of like, but also am not sure if I’ve used to the best of it’s ability or scope (see photo below or featured image).