26 Nov 2009

Photography 1. The Art of Photography. Introduction.

I like the tone of the writing and it all makes good sense.  I think I know my camera well and can find my way around it without any problems but can see the sense of making sure.

Exercise: Focal length and angle of view.
I have always assumed that 50mm was the standard real life size for a 35mm format but tried this exercise anyway.  I was a little surprised to see that in my viewfinder real life size is more like 70mm.  Of course the viewfinder may not be translating the image 1:1 and as I need varifocal glasses to correct for both long and short vision defects... one of the curses of age, my eye may not be seeing 1:1.  A quick look at the Spec page of the manual shows that the viewfinder has a magnification of 0.71x(-1 dioptre with 50mm lens at infinity).  I don't understand all that but I do realise that an image size multiplied by 0.71 will appear smaller to the eye which probably explains why I need  70mm of telephoto to bring the image size up to real life.  I'm not sure that this is a particularly valid exercise anyway as it is the image that the sensor sees that is relevant, not what the viewfinder produces as many cameras, mine included, will alter the image slightly.

I don't think I will actually print off 3 A4 shots of my living room just to see where I have to hold the paper to simulate the size of the real thing.  I feel that it goes without saying that the wide angle shot will show things smaller than life (an effect that has killed at least one person... ask if you want to know more) so I will have to hold a print closer to my eye than a 50mm or telephoto image.

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