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UWA landscape question

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skm.sa100 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote skm.sa100 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: UWA landscape question
    Posted: 23 August 2017 at 19:22
While using a UWA for landscapes, do you tilt the lens to get more fg in the pic or just go lower? Tilting obviously will have a different effect than lowering.
I recently thought of this and studied a few landscape pics and tilting introduces a strong perspective exaggeration compared to holding the camera straight.
Want to know your thoughts?

Thanks
Sashi
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Basil View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Basil Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 August 2017 at 20:52
I just get lower to include foreground in the shot. You are right that tilting induces pretty harsh distortion. Find a plant or rock or something in the foreground to add visual interest.

It's the same when shooting interiors. Keep the sensor parallel to the wall and you limit distortion in the corners. I'm always amazed at how many real estate shots I see that look like the walls are falling inward.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Miranda F Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 August 2017 at 09:28
You probably already appreciate this, but using an UW for landscapes doesn't always work because it tends to makes things look tiny and far away. BUT I often use my Sigma 10-20mm for architectural stuff (includign interiors), and turn it to portrait orientation with the axis horizontal. That wastes the bottom half of the pic, but gives me vertical verticals, and the effective cropped angle is less wide.
However I have found that being strictly accurate with the geometry doesn't work so well, because we *expect* to see some converging verticals when we look up! So if I remember, I usually try a shot pointing up slightly as well, and on the print that often looks a bit better.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote SnowFella Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 August 2017 at 10:03
Tilting anything UWA up or down and everything around the edges start falling in or out...just the nature of the beast.
It's all a trade off, keep it level and maybe loose foreground/sky or tilt and adjust in post...you will loose quite a bit of the original frame in doing so.

Shot a sunrise a few months back using my Sony 11-18 and didn't really think of what I was doing, pointing well up the trees around the lake looked like a hurricane was coming through. Bit of LR editing and it ended up almost looking normal.


DSC03880_HDR by Johan Olsson, on Flickr
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skm.sa100 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote skm.sa100 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 August 2017 at 17:07
I find UWA quite challenging, especially since I do so little of it. And the challenging part makes it that I'm less willing to reach for the UWA.

The "wasted" FG is one of the obvious challenges. I read someone saying "UWA is NOT for capturing everything. It's for CREATIVE pics that stick it in-your-face FG objects and other such effects".

While see his perspective (pun intended), I do wonder if it's possible to use UWA to "capture it all" and still make interesting pics.

Johan the pic does look normal but the sky-on-fire is a bit strong to my taste, if you don't mind.
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skm.sa100 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote skm.sa100 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 August 2017 at 17:12
Originally posted by Miranda F Miranda F wrote:

You probably already appreciate this, but using an UW for landscapes doesn't always work because it tends to makes things look tiny and far away. BUT I often use my Sigma 10-20mm for architectural stuff (includign interiors), and turn it to portrait orientation with the axis horizontal. That wastes the bottom half of the pic, but gives me vertical verticals, and the effective cropped angle is less wide.
However I have found that being strictly accurate with the geometry doesn't work so well, because we *expect* to see some converging verticals when we look up! So if I remember, I usually try a shot pointing up slightly as well, and on the print that often looks a bit better.

Yup. Totally get it.
In such cases, UWA is quite unforgiving if the composition isn't exactly right in terms of centering, holding at an angle, tilting the camera etc.

I find UWA to be quite unforgiving in these aspects as it's not quite as easy to crop/straighten in post in such cases.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote sybersitizen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 August 2017 at 17:15
Originally posted by skm.sa100 skm.sa100 wrote:

... I do wonder if it's possible to use UWA to "capture it all" and still make interesting pics.

It is ... and sometimes it may actually require that you do not hold the camera level. A prime example is Horsehoe Bend; but definitely there are others.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote SnowFella Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 August 2017 at 06:05
Originally posted by skm.sa100 skm.sa100 wrote:


Johan the pic does look normal but the sky-on-fire is a bit strong to my taste, if you don't mind.


Don't mind at all, was kinda vivid at the time but the HDR treatment has boosted it a fair bit.
Looking at the edits I had to pull verticals to -60 in lightroom for it look anywhere "normal"
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Post Options Post Options   Quote addy landzaat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 August 2017 at 12:31
No need to tilt or going low, I prefer the horizon in the centre

Yes, I do. I know common taste dictates the 1/3rd foreground, 2/3rd sky, but that isn't always the strongest picture. Going low or going tilted is a compositional decision. You decide what is best for the picture you're gonna take.

I find that I prefer landscapes that are taken by longer lenses. But sometimes a UWA kan make a lot of sense in this situations. I don't know if you consider this a landscape, but in this picture the wide angle character of the lens makes the picture, you can't do this with a longer lens:

Sony A900 | Minolta 17-35/3.5G | 17mm | f/9 | !/640s | 160iso

Sometimes the UWA lens can convey the wideness of the place the best, for instance in this picture from Grand Canyon:

Sony A900 | Minolta 17-35/3.5G | 17mm | f/9 | 1/400s | 160iso

Or this picture from Bryce Canyon:

Sony A900 | Minolta 17-35/3.5G | 17mm | f/9 | 1/400s | 160iso

And sometimes the thing in front is important and it gives scale to the picture, as with this picture from Bryce Canyon:

Sony A900 | Minolta 17-35/3.5G | 17mm | f/9 | 1/250s | 160iso

What I'm trying to say is that there is not just one way to use an UWA lens.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote skm.sa100 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 August 2017 at 19:25
Thanks for the input, guys.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Winwalloe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 August 2017 at 16:31
It seems I do as the others here; I shoot as level as possible in wide angle, as the distortion is elsewise too visible.

If it means having too much foreground, I may crop it out in post-process.

I avoid using perspective correction in post-process as I find it too visible, if not unrealistic.

Having an interesting foreground makes it easier, but I find that it's also important with longer focal length anyway.

I'll post a recent example later on.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Winwalloe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 August 2017 at 22:03
So here's a photo where shooting in portrait allows me to fit the whole subject:



But since the foreground is useless, I crop to this:

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Post Options Post Options   Quote skm.sa100 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 August 2017 at 15:46
Yeah, I see what you mean. I stopped worrying about aspect ratios and do crop as I see fit, especially as I almost never print.

A fixed 3:2 is more of a traditional/historic throwback due to physical limitations which a digital medium is less encumbered with.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote SineQuaNon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 September 2017 at 21:21
Originally posted by skm.sa100 skm.sa100 wrote:

While using a UWA for landscapes, do you tilt the lens to get more fg in the pic or just go lower? Tilting obviously will have a different effect than lowering.
I recently thought of this and studied a few landscape pics and tilting introduces a strong perspective exaggeration compared to holding the camera straight.
Want to know your thoughts?

Thanks
Sashi



Whenever possible, I attempt to keep the camera as level as I possibly can, even with UWA lenses, so I generally end up dropping the camera closer to the ground. I find this not only keeps the image looking more natural, but it also adds a bit off added depth and interest to the image that wouldn't be present, otherwise. And images shot from average eye-height always seem to have less impact to me than ones created from different perspectives.

Here is an eye-level image I took that demonstrates my point. Though it is what I consider a technically good image, and has interesting subject matter available, by taking it at eye-height, it just lacks a certain impact:

Without a Doubt by Nate Handlang, on Flickr

In contrast,the image below would have been far less effective taken at standard height, even if tilted down. And tilting would have induced an unnatural lean that I personally would have found distracting:

Barren by Nate Handlang, on Flickr

This is the unnatural lean that generally bothers me:

Little Bend by Nate Handlang, on Flickr

And for my final example, this image shows that sometimes, you just have to go low in order to get what you want:

Solidified (Color) by Nate Handlang, on Flickr

Everyone has their own individual style/technique, and UWA lenses are adept at putting those techniques to the test. In the end, find what works for you, but for most viewers, the eye just prefers images that are level in the vertical perspective. Horizontal shifts can work out much easier for some reason, but tilting forward or backward is much more difficult to make pleasing.

Cheers!
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