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Thread: Super wides - enlarge closeup or large landscape?

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    Super wides - enlarge closeup or large landscape?

    I'm trying to get a handle of my super wide and am finding it somewhat perplexing. On the one hand, the wide shots are gorgeous, but I find I can only take one or two and the area is done. On the other hand, I've read that they are equally useful to bring the focus to a central, close object and use the landscape as the background. Does anyone have insight into this?

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    which superwide?
    People have different opinions of what constitutes a superwide lens.

    some call the Sigma 10-20mm a superwide(simply due to the focal length) but as it's an APS-C only lens, the cropped view makes it a 15mm .. which is still pretty super wide.
    But compared to 12mm on a full frame DSLR 15mm feels restricted.

    Anyhow, when you say

    Quote Originally Posted by EnlightenedMedia View Post
    .... but I find I can only take one or two and the area is done. ....
    I'm guessing you're referring to panorama/stitching efforts

    If so, then you're superwide must cover either 360° or 180° field of views . and that's stupendous wide!

    My super wide lens is the Sigma 12-24mm lens on a full frame camera, and it's very often I find I'm zooming into something more like 14mm-17mm, rather than wanting the widest FOV!
    Once or twice I've tried to do a 2 or 3 shot pano stitch ... but more so for the curiosity rather than a need to get 200° or more FOV.
    In general tho, you'll find that using a less wide lens and shooting more frames to cover a wider FOV is the best way to do it.
    And one of the major attractions to using a super wide .. especially really wides like the 12mm, is to capture a wide area with a single exposure .. and eliminate the idea of pano/stitching.

    As for centralising a subject and using the background to effect .. I do this almost all the time(or at least try too, until I get distracted by something).
    Sorry I can't offer any insights other than sometimes it works, other times maybe not so well.
    About the only tip/hint I can offer is to be mindful of the point that when you choose that perspective, it's a massively distorted one compared to how we see the world with out eyes.
    Using a super wide lens in this way makes the centralised subject look far larger than it actually is .. can look fine for some subjects, can look ungainly for others.
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    Administrator ricktas's Avatar
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    Most landscapes benefit from some point of interest in the foreground. A log on the beach, some good reeds at the lakes edge etc. So having a 'close object' is about good composition for land/seascapes in general, not specific to the lens used.
    Last edited by ricktas; 07-12-2015 at 7:35am.
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    I've found framing scenes to be far more difficult with superwides than with 40mm or higher.

    As for superwide, for me the definition is between 14-28mm, although anything over 20mm isn't too bad, but still pretty wide.

    I'm trying to determine how to make use of one landscape with this one lens, for example, and take more than one landscape shot which pretty much covers the whole scene!

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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EnlightenedMedia View Post
    I've found framing scenes to be far more difficult with superwides than with 40mm or higher.
    Quote Originally Posted by EnlightenedMedia View Post
    As for superwide, for me the definition is between 14-28mm, although anything over 20mm isn't too bad, but still pretty wide.
    Yes. Good landscape pictures can be elusive with such lenses. I have an 8-18 on APSC (Talking of "super-wides") The slightest tilt from holding
    the lens level will introduce wild convergence of lines and this can be hard to correct in PP (post-processing).

    Quote Originally Posted by EnlightenedMedia View Post
    I'm trying to determine how to make use of one landscape with this one lens, for example, and take more than one landscape shot which pretty much covers the whole scene!
    I don't know what you mean here. Does "one landscape" mean a particular landscape somewhere, or does it mean a single image of a landscape.
    By the last part, do you mean taking multiple images of a landscape to later stitch into a single image?

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    Mark mpb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EnlightenedMedia View Post
    ...... On the other hand, I've read that they are equally useful to bring the focus to a central, close object and use the landscape as the background. Does anyone have insight into this?
    Not sure that the replies have really addressed what you are referring to. I assuming the landscape is not the main subject of the photo, just an interesting background.

    I use my 8-16 to get close (very close) to the subjects which create an interesting point of view an still get the landscape mostly in focus.
    Here are a couple of examples which comes to mind. Both shot at 8mm.


    Last edited by mpb; 08-12-2015 at 9:06am.
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    Ausphotography Regular Hamster's Avatar
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    Super wides - enlarge closeup or large landscape?

    Super wides take some different thinking to get the best out of them. "Getting more in" is not what they're for. Generally you need strong composition with foreground subjects pretty much at your feet, or you can use the diverging lines created on something like a sky to add drama. Without this you just end up with big expanses of boring. I suggest getting on the web and looking for examples that work. Try looking for something like a Flickr group covering wide angles.
    Last edited by Hamster; 08-12-2015 at 9:58am.
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