Tilt-shift photography: how to use 1 lens for 6 very different effects

Tilt-shift photography: how to use 1 lens for 6 different effects

Tilt-shift photography is commonly misconstrued solely as producing miniature effects in your images. But tilt-shift photography is much more than producing toy towns. In this tutorial we show you six vastly different effects you can produce with the same tilt-shift lens.

Tilt-shift photography: how to use 1 lens for 6 different effects

The shallow depth of field effect available from using tilt-shift lenses has become their most popular use.

However, creating this ‘toy town’ look is not their only use. Tilt-shift lenses allow you to move the body of the lens in relation to the sensor.

The shift movement keeps the lens parallel to the sensor, but moves it up, down or from side to side, allowing you to control the perspective of your image.

Tilting the lens shifts the plane of focus, allowing you to increase or decrease the amount of the scene that is in focus.

If you want to get the best quality results without having to resort to any software tricks, a tilt-and-shift lens is the only option.

Tilt-shift photography effects: 01 Correct converging verticals

Tilt-shift photography effects: 01 Correct converging verticals

The classic use of the shift movement in tilt-shift photography is to avoid converging verticals in your images. To achieve this you start with the lens in its normal position and, making sure that the camera is level and the sensor is vertical, frame your basic image.

But at this stage the shot won’t include the top of the subject, and there will be too much foreground, so you shift the lens upwards, which will alter the framing of the shot to include the top of the subject while keeping everything straight in the frame.

PAGE 1 – Tilt-shift photography effects: 01 Correct converging verticals
PAGE 2 – Tilt-shift photography effects: 02 Panoramic shots
PAGE 3 – Tilt-shift photography effects: 03 Avoiding obstructions or reflections
PAGE 4 – Tilt-shift photography effects: 04 Toy town effects
PAGE 5 – Tilt-shift photography effects: 05 Sideways tilt
PAGE 6 – Tilt-shift photography effects: 06 Increasing depth of field

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