by Erin Babnik
There is a lot of truth to the old idea that we tend to see the world in terms of what we know about it. If we know that a location offers a photogenic vista to the north, then it can be easy to overlook the wonderfully gnarled trees to the south. Similarly, the compositions that photographers see most easily are usually those that fit well within the average field of view of two human eyes at a standing height—it’s the way of seeing that we know best. With only a little shifting or focusing, our eyes at that height can take in scenes that fall within the range of a 24-105mm lens quite nicely, and it is no wonder that focal lengths in this range are most traditional for landscape photography. Nonetheless, compositions that fall well outside these limits have the potential to evoke the more abstract qualities of human perception, such as the ability of our brains to combine certain visual stimuli and to isolate others. For the photographer who would like to emphasize the ‘mind’s eye,’ extreme focal lengths have a lot to offer.
Read the entire article on the Canon Digital Learning Center.