Tilt-shift lenses create a surreal effect by exaggerating depth and perspective. The photographer places a subject in a shallow plane and then tilts the camera lens to make the subject appear closer to or further away from the viewer. This technique is also used in many types of photography and film to create special effects. Tilt-shift lenses are available in different sizes and focal lengths, from wide angle to medium telephoto. Here we give you a brief overview of how to use a tilt-shift lens and how it works, and we show you how to achieve a surreal effect in your photographs.
Why We Use a Tilt-Shift Lens
We use a tilt-shift lens on our cameras to distort the world around us. This creates beautiful images that are very different from those taken with a regular camera lens.
Tilt-shift lenses are available for both SLR and DSLR cameras. We found this lens for our camera and we love it. It makes us stop and take notice of our surroundings, so we’ve had plenty of lovely moments like this one…
What we love about the lens is the way it distorts and exaggerates the size of objects, making them appear larger than they are. A lot of landscape photographs look flat and two dimensional and it was great to see this distorted perspective for real.
The effect can be achieved by using a specially designed lens and special lens equipment. With this tilt-shift lens, the lens equipment and the lens itself can be adjusted to make the image look distorted. It is possible to make the image look like it is in a tunnel, on the moon, or underwater. The lens is not very expensive, so there is no need to invest lots of money into it. It’s a great way to make a quick statement or get creative with your photographs.
How to Use a Tilt-Shift Lens
Tilt-shift lenses are great for taking pictures of people and objects that are closer to you than normal camera lenses can cope with. They allow you to change the focus, make the object look bigger or smaller, and distort perspective. A tilt-shift lens can work wonders when photographing flowers, trees, buildings, and people.
Start by placing a piece of paper over the top of the lens to create a focal plane. This means the image will be focused on the sheet, rather than on the camera.
Next, make sure the camera is switched to manual focus. Find the correct focus for your subject. For example, if you are using a wide-angle lens, a focal length of around 24mm, the closest you will usually get to your subject will be around 1m away. You’ll find that this works out to a focal point of around 50cm (20in) from the camera. The further away you are, the less close you will be able to focus.
To change the focal point, turn the lens. Look through the viewfinder. The viewfinder tells you how much magnification you have applied. It shows you what the picture will look like if you focus on a distant point. Now, look at your subject and slowly zoom in towards the subject. Watch the viewfinder and focus on the focal point as it comes closer.
Once you are focusing at your desired distance, you can use the zoom setting to change the angle of view. If you are using a wide-angle lens, you’ll find that the picture has become narrower, so you can shoot a wider scene. If you’re using a telephoto lens, the opposite happens. You can see that the picture looks more stretched.
Take the lens off the camera. Put the sheet of paper down and turn the lens on its side, so that the tilt-shift feature is exposed. Press the shutter button and hold it down while rotating the lens.
When you’ve taken the picture, switch off the lens, pick up the sheet of paper, and see how your picture has been altered.