Shoot Wide Open

Discussion in 'Photographic Discussions' started by PeterToronto, Jun 30, 2010.

  1. PeterToronto

    PeterToronto TPF Noob!

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    I love the look of a shallow or narrow depth of field. Everyday mundane objects shot at maximum lens aperture take on a sort of mysterious feel, and have a magnetic quality about them. For myself, it doesn't matter if it's a portrait, a landscape, a macro shot, or even a still life, I just can't get enough of shooting fast glass wide open. I almost feel guilty moving that aperture ring anywhere beyond f/2.

    There are a number of practical and artistic reasons for welding that aperture around f/1.2 or f/1.4. For one thing, a shallow depth of field can help to tell a story by directing the viewer's eye to what is of primary importance in the image. A shallow depth of field is also an effective means of washing away a distracting background, or a cluttered foreground for that matter. Furthermore, in many instances, a shallow depth of field serves to provide a more visually compelling image. Often times, images created with this technique look as if they were dreamily or wispily painted with a brush, as opposed to clinically recorded on a digital sensor. The end result often produces what can best be described as surrealistic imagery.

    An often quoted suggestion in photography circles states that it's all about "f/8 and being there". Well, if you want to try something different, or if you are looking for that creative boost, or if you want to separate yourself from the point & shoot camera phone generation of image makers, how about this suggestion: "exercise your creativity and shoot wide open."

    If you found this interesting or helpful, there's more tips, ideas, and thoughts about photography on my website.

    Peace
    Peter

    peter anthony PHOTOGRAPHY - Home
     
  2. Flash Harry

    Flash Harry TPF Noob!

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    Ridiculous. Many subjects need depth of field, its knowing when/why to use whichever and the control of DOF that makes a photographer. H
     
  3. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    "f8 and being there" has been a truism of photojournalists since photojournalism began.

    Suggesting it is applied in all photography circles is very short sighted, and could even be construed by some as misleading.

    Unfortunately, many use shallow depth of field in a way that confuses and detracts from the story an image could tell.
     
  4. travistank

    travistank TPF Noob!

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    I have mixed opinions on this, I agree the shallow DOF can give a very dreamy and creative perspective to a photograph yet I cant image when f 1.2 would ever need to be used in a set up portrait, unless you were doing an ad for fake eyelashes and wanted only those in focus haha. Yea even more ridiculous is the 1.0 glass.
     
  5. gsgary

    gsgary Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    A landscape shot at F1.2 won't be much of a landscape will it, sorry your post is BS
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2010
  6. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    +2!!

    I've seen fantastic macros done wide open, fully closed down and heck using focus stacking - each has their own look, feel and creativity and not one is more or lesser than the other for the aperture used.
     
  7. AlexL

    AlexL TPF Noob!

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    ^^ +3 :)

    If photos are meant to be shot at wide open all the time, whywould we even have other f settings? (except when it is too bright!)
     
  8. Infidel

    Infidel TPF Noob!

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    I didn't really get the feel that the OP was preaching to shoot wide open all the time. To me, it had the vibe of opening beginners to new possibilities, or perhaps just stating what is obvious to so many on the forum, which is that large apertures yield shallow DOF, which can be used creatively. Also had a "I'm trying to get people to read by blog" vibe to it.
     
  9. DennyCrane

    DennyCrane No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Most lenses aren't as sharp at either end as they are in the middle and outward from there... meaning your f/1.2 Nifty Fifty might get it's best tack-sharp shots closer to 2.2.
     
  10. dhilberg

    dhilberg TPF Noob!

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    Obviously both shallow and deep depth of field has their places. You're probably not going to shoot a landscape at f/2, and you're probably not going to shoot sports at f/11 (unless you're panning).

    In the words of one well-known sports photographer: "I didn't buy a 400mm f/2.8 to shoot at f/8."
     
  11. Early

    Early TPF Noob!

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    Tru dat!

    On a side note, although I love those shallow DOF shots, I often find them overdone. But that's a different subject, though, isn't it?:lmao:
     
  12. Petraio Prime

    Petraio Prime TPF Noob!

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    Yeah, that's why even fast lenses stop down to f/22.
     

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