Friday, December 2

Photographs - size and shape

One thing that writing blog posts about my photography has made me do is to explore options and compare my cameras. In all the time that I have been using my cameras I have stuck to just one picture size and never really considered changing it depending on what I wish to photograph.

I wanted to compare the lenses of my two cameras to try and show the differences between the images obtained when setting the lens of each camera to its widest option. For the FZ72 that is 20mm and for the FZ1000 it is 25mm. To be honesty all this means to me is that 20mm takes a wider view than the 25mm.

I took my cameras to the plot to find out what this actually means in resulting image terms. As I was preparing to take some photos I remembered that my cameras were taking images with different proportions and if this was to be a fair comparison then I needed to set them up so they produced the same shape image.

To say that the two cameras are the same make surprisingly they refer to this feature differently the FZ72 has a picture size option which gives more detail and the FZ1000 more accurately refers to 'aspect ratio'.
I set both cameras to 16:9 and took my two photos.
Unfortunately the photo on the left isn't quite straight but I didn't want to straighten it as this would crop some of the image. As it is you can see that the FZ72 takes in more of the scene. (If you click on the image you access a larger photo.

I decided to compare the other aspect ratios.


As expected the FZ72 always capture more of the scene, however the image produced by the FZ1000 is sharper.
Obviously there is some trade off in increasing the angle width.

The above photos are just quick shots so not the best of photos, however, another thing this exercise has taught me is to try and make more use of the aspect ratio setting by trying to consider which shape is best for the image that I am trying to capture.

Putting this into practice at a recent visit to RSPB Old Moor.


The top photo was at 4:3  and the one below was 16:9.
I don't really think I got the composition right in the bottom photo - too much of the reeds on the left - I could crop but that would change the shape. 

Click on the image for a larger view.


Which do you prefer?

Copyright: Original post from Our Plot at Green Lane Allotments http://glallotments.blogspot.co.uk/ author S Garrett

13 comments:

  1. Very interesting comparisons, Sue. I've never looked into different ratios in my camera settings before. Except for the odd panoramic or square using my phone (which doesn't count). One evening, I must take a look, however, the minute I experiment I find I can't get things back the way the were. I always take down my image size for uploading (Photoshop) so I tend to crop my image to the aspect I want there. I am a fan of the 16:9 especially if I've a video in the same post. I take phases of using it. So, in your images I'd say I prefer the 16:9 and I wouldn't consider cropping it. I like the weight of the reeds, making me feel I was standing on the edge there with you :-)

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    1. I crop images after too but this way the starting point is different. I'm starting yo use 16:9 for landscape and other setting as appropriate and it does make a difference as the resolution is better than post download cropping.

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    2. I should add that with my cameras it's easy to flip from one setting to the other, even for individual photos.

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  2. Have you noticed that with the really wide angle lenses especially the ones that you and I both use, they throw the distant image back further that one would really like witness your greenhouse in the top picture,they are however useful for close ups indoors the other plus is their increased depth of field, as to cropping 16.9 I use it for PC screens 6x4 is for prints as is 7x5 which of those you use is all in the composition of the actual picture as you say I also prefer the 4x3 crop above

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    1. One thing that I have found since playing is that the squarer ratio is good for some bird photos, (especially water birds where there is a reflection} or some of my harvest type photos. We don't print out much other than greetings cards and we have a few framed photos dotted aroun. We also have one that we had an acrylic print made from. Currently we want to choose another two make a couple more for our dining room wall.

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    2. Years ago when I used 2 1/4 " square format film I had no choice it was also useful and still Is nowadays since orientation for landscape and portrait is the same no need to alter grip on the camera I also use it for bird pictures

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  3. I often change the aspect ratio of my photos using Picasa (which is good for other things too, such as lightening, straightening etc). I also use the "Manual" size setting to alter the composition sometimes, as well as cropping. I have tried Google Photos a bit, but still prefer the now-unsupported Picasa!

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    1. I'd used it before with software after importing the photos, Mark but not with the camera prior to taking the photos. The camera settings help by keeping the resolution rather than croppimg out some of the image and enlarging also the starting point changes. Using some setting you get more at the top and bottom to start with and others give more at the sides. Sounds a bit gobbledegookish when I read this back I used to use Picasa but now use Adobe Lightroom.

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  4. Wow! The photos outcome is so different! Enjoy exploring with your gadget! ;)

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  5. I only use 16:9 size I think is more informative than others. If I want to show some thing in details I crop the image as you do, Sue. But in some cases a cropped image is not sharp.

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    1. I used to just use 16:9, Nadezda but am finding that using the different settings when appropriate does work differently even though there may still need to be some cropping.

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  6. It's just too easy to stick the camera on auto! But I do try the different options occasionally, especially macro. The colours in your bottom photo are lovely, but I like the sky in the one above. At least with digital we can have lots of versions of the same scene and be selective

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