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Author Topic: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography  (Read 14501 times)

AreBee

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #40 on: February 08, 2016, 12:09:46 pm »

All,

Further to this link provided above:

Quote from: Jack Dykinga
Often, while teaching workshops, I find that when I tell students to tighten up a composition, they simply zoom their lens. By doing so, they negate the effect of the focal length they originally selected. It's far better to keep the focal length (for its desired effect) and move the entire camera -- and the photographer -- either forward or back.

I would be grateful if someone will explain how zooming negates the effect of the focal length originally selected.
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biglouis

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #41 on: February 08, 2016, 12:27:11 pm »

Hi there. This is my first post, so please be gentle with me.

I have been using fixed lens cameras for some time for landscape photography.

My two leading cameras are the Sigma DP2M (Merrill) and the DP3M - which give a equivalent fov of about 40mm and 75mm.

I use a Lee System 7 filter system with the cameras and they work well together.

One benefit of a single lens camera is that it definitely slows you down and makes you think whether or not you are using a tripod.

I do have access to other cameras and in fact my walk around kit has become a Leica Q for 28-35-50 and the Sigma DP3M for 75-90-135, as both are considerably 'croppable'.

LouisB

« Last Edit: February 08, 2016, 12:41:58 pm by biglouis »
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Isaac

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #42 on: February 08, 2016, 12:57:53 pm »

… how zooming negates the effect of the focal length originally selected.

I guess you're bothered by the phrasing? Is it too charitable to read that as -- zooming deselects the focal length originally selected and consequently deselects the effect -- zooming from 28mm to 200mm deselects foreground stretch and selects foreground midground compression instead.
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SZRitter

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #43 on: February 08, 2016, 01:00:54 pm »

All,

Further to this link provided above:

I would be grateful if someone will explain how zooming negates the effect of the focal length originally selected.

It all depends on objectives of your photograph, and it is a very real issue I deal with when I take photos for my workplace.

I'll start with a small description of where I work. I work at a resort company (ski and golf) in Michigan. The two resorts I work at most of the time have a vertical of 500' to 600' (ish, don't remember exactly). This means the powers that be can be a little bit picky about how we make it look, and want a mountain, not a mole hill.

Now, take two objects, let's say a person and the mountain, where the person is obviously standing in front of the mountain, and they stay constant/similar size in the frame. If I use a wide angle, the mountain will look really small, but if I use a normal or longer length, the mountain will look pretty large. Makes sense, right? So, just zooming alters this relationship of near to far objects produced by FOV (as it is dependent on focal length/sensor size/distances).
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Isaac

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #44 on: February 08, 2016, 01:01:42 pm »

My two leading cameras are…

To be helpful, we need to push you into saying which of those fixed-lens cameras you would choose -- if you could only use one camera for the next 2 years?
« Last Edit: February 08, 2016, 01:24:28 pm by Isaac »
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AreBee

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #45 on: February 08, 2016, 01:42:49 pm »

Isaac,

Quote
I guess you're bothered by the phrasing?

No.

Quote
...zooming from 28mm to 200mm...

...changes field of view alone. It has no effect on the relative size of objects that featured in the previous field of view.



SZRitter,

Quote
...take two objects, let's say a person and the mountain, where the person is obviously standing in front of the mountain, and they stay constant/similar size in the frame. If I use a wide angle, the mountain will look really small, but if I use a normal or longer length, the mountain will look pretty large. Makes sense, right?

If you move location, yes.

Quote
So, just zooming alters this relationship of near to far objects produced by FOV...

If you remain in the same location, no.
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SZRitter

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #46 on: February 08, 2016, 01:49:58 pm »

SZRitter,

If you move location, yes.

If you remain in the same location, no.

Funny, I was just about to reply to you when you added this. Basically, yes. It's a question of the purpose of the photo. I often have an object I am highlighting, so I need to pay attention to how it is rendered in relation to the background.
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Isaac

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #47 on: February 08, 2016, 02:03:35 pm »

...changes field of view alone. It has no effect on the relative size of objects that featured in the previous field of view.

Yes, and when I change focal length I'll change position to keep the same objects in the field of view, and that will change perspective.
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AreBee

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #48 on: February 08, 2016, 02:28:57 pm »

Isaac,

Quote
...when I change focal length I'll change position...

That's not what Jack Dykinga advises to his workshop students.
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Isaac

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #49 on: February 08, 2016, 03:04:39 pm »

That's not what Jack Dykinga advises to his workshop students.

It is true that I did not take "when I tell students to tighten up a composition" to mean keep the same objects in the field of view.
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AreBee

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #50 on: February 08, 2016, 04:22:17 pm »

Isaac,

Quote
...I did not take "when I tell students to tighten up a composition" to mean keep the same objects in the field of view.

Neither does Jack Dykinga:

Quote
It's far better to keep the focal length (for its desired effect) and move the entire camera -- and the photographer -- either forward or back.

If focal length is fixed then a change in location will change field of view.

Quote from: Jack Dykinga
Often, while teaching workshops, I find that when I tell students to tighten up a composition, they simply zoom their lens. By doing so, they negate the effect of the focal length they originally selected. It's far better to keep the focal length (for its desired effect) and move the entire camera -- and the photographer -- either forward or back.

By zooming, workshop students negate the effect of the focal length they originally selected. It is far better to keep the focal length (for its desired effect) and move the entire camera -- and the photographer -- either forward or back. Changing location changes perspective.

What is the "effect" of a focal length?
« Last Edit: February 10, 2016, 10:02:40 am by Rob B. »
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kencameron

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #51 on: February 08, 2016, 06:21:38 pm »

Maybe look back at your favourite photos from the last year or two, and count them into focal-length buckets: say <50mm, 50<85mm, >85mm. Then check if there's been a focal length you've used much more than the others.


"Favourite" is an important qualification here, which I am not sure has been followed in subsequent illustrative posts, and it would be particularly interesting if there were to be a difference between the results of assessing all photos and favourite photos.


On cameras, my Ricoh GR (APSC/28mm equivalent) produces more than its share of my favourite landscapes but with the current availability of good stitching software I think I would choose a longer fixed focal length if I could only pick one.



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Ken Cameron

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #52 on: February 08, 2016, 06:33:12 pm »

I'll start with a small description of where I work. I work at a resort company (ski and golf) in Michigan. The two resorts I work at most of the time have a vertical of 500' to 600' (ish, don't remember exactly). This means the powers that be can be a little bit picky about how we make it look, and want a mountain, not a mole hill.


I regularly find myself reducing mountains to mole hills by photographing them. Lacking suitable foreground objects to establish relativities, a jet pack, or teleportation skills, would be helpful. Lightroom's Lens Correction manual controls, or the warp filter in PS, can increase the proportion of the image occupied by the mountain to something like its predominance in the mind, at the expense of sharpness. Other solutions?
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Ken Cameron

SZRitter

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #53 on: February 09, 2016, 10:19:41 am »


I regularly find myself reducing mountains to mole hills by photographing them. Lacking suitable foreground objects to establish relativities, a jet pack, or teleportation skills, would be helpful. Lightroom's Lens Correction manual controls, or the warp filter in PS, can increase the proportion of the image occupied by the mountain to something like its predominance in the mind, at the expense of sharpness. Other solutions?

The more you increase your distance from the subject, the smaller it will be in proportion to it's background. So you have to step back and use a longer focal length to compensate for stepping back. If I wasn't lazy, I could draw the principle behind it fairly easily. Not sure my description is making it work right...

Although, your issue may be less about the size of the mountains, and more about framing them right at the time of capture...

Edit: Would a tilt do this? I can't remember what all the movements do.

Why do you need a jet pack when you can use a drone? None of that pesky falling to your death issues with drones....  :P

And for the record, I think many of us grew up thinking of this "effect" as a product of the focal length, not distance. So it may be what many of us call "effect" of lens is actually products of other things, but because the lens is the object we are using, we attribute it to an effect of the lens.
« Last Edit: February 09, 2016, 10:35:13 am by SZRitter »
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Isaac

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #54 on: February 09, 2016, 11:36:00 am »

"Favourite" is an important qualification here…

Maybe not as-much-as I first thought - there are too many other factors wrapped-up in "favourite".

When it's like this, we're going to be giving-up something and that'll probably be more comfortable if we choose up-front what to give-up:

476   < 35mm
408   35mm < 70mm
426   70mm < 135mm
0   >= 135mm


… but with the current availability of good stitching software I think I would choose a longer fixed focal length if I could only pick one.

Me too, with the understanding that by doing so I'll give-up the possibility of wider shots when movement is an important element in the scene.
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NancyP

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #55 on: February 09, 2016, 02:25:13 pm »

I find that the woodlands landscapes often frame well with a near-normal lens. I pull out the ultra-wide for dramatic sky use in portrait format. The skyline itself isn't usually very interesting due to the lack of dramatic features. I have to find a decent isolated tree for sky interest, if the sky itself isn't knockout gorgeous.
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kencameron

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #56 on: February 09, 2016, 10:25:44 pm »

The more you increase your distance from the subject, the smaller it will be in proportion to it's background. So you have to step back and use a longer focal length to compensate for stepping back. If I wasn't lazy, I could draw the principle behind it fairly easily. Not sure my description is making it work right...

Although, your issue may be less about the size of the mountains, and more about framing them right at the time of capture...

Edit: Would a tilt do this? I can't remember what all the movements do.

Why do you need a jet pack when you can use a drone? None of that pesky falling to your death issues with drones....  :P

And for the record, I think many of us grew up thinking of this "effect" as a product of the focal length, not distance. So it may be what many of us call "effect" of lens is actually products of other things, but because the lens is the object we are using, we attribute it to an effect of the lens.


I have a drone on order and am looking forward to experimenting with it as a camera platform, always assuming they are still legal when mine arrives, or it doesn't get shot out of the sky on its first outing. I live in hope of a jetpack - maybe for my grandchildren.


The mountains (often mountain ranges) I diminish when I photograph them are generally in the distance and I am making stitched panoramas with a telephoto lens. The problem is that they look relatively smaller on screen or paper than in reality. The issue is how they look in relation to their foreground. I have always supposed that this is because the brain has tricks of attention which make what interests it look relatively large out there in the world, but don't work with small paper rectangles, particularly long thin ones (I find that changing the aspect ratio of the pano helps). I don't know anything about tilt lenses, but conjecture that the "vertical" slider in LR's Lens Correction Tab may do something like what they do.
« Last Edit: February 10, 2016, 12:00:18 am by kencameron »
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Ken Cameron

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #57 on: February 10, 2016, 12:13:16 am »

Maybe not as-much-as I first thought - there are too many other factors wrapped-up in "favourite".

When it's like this, we're going to be giving-up something and that'll probably be more comfortable if we choose up-front what to give-up:
476   < 35mm
408   35mm < 70mm
426   70mm < 135mm
0   >= 135mm
Certainly. And, thinking about it, I do delete images I don't like, so the raw numbers will end up being a good guide.
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Ken Cameron

AreBee

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #58 on: February 10, 2016, 06:05:04 am »

Ken,

Quote
I don't know anything about tilt lenses, but conjecture that the "vertical" slider in LR's Lens Correction Tab may do something like what they do.

With respect to camera movements, tilt is the term commonly used to describe application of the scheimpflug principle, in which the plane of focus is no longer parallel to the film/sensor plane.

The effect would not resolve your issue.
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biker

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Re: Fixed Lens Compact Camera for Landscape Photography
« Reply #59 on: February 15, 2016, 05:14:41 pm »

Purchased the 28mm eq./APS-C Nikon Coolpix A compact camera. As it is from 2013, they offered it for an affordable price.
I'm going to give a try for a few weeks. I'm curious what the fixed lens landscape pictures will be like.
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