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Thread started 06 Jun 2016 (Monday) 19:55
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How to avoid perspective distortion when shooting 14, 17, and 24mm?

 
Ace ­ and ­ Deuce
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Post edited over 2 years ago by Ace and Deuce.
     
Jun 06, 2016 19:55 |  #1

When I use anything wide, I get horrific perspective distortion. I look at other people's pics and the metadata says they're using ultra wide lenses but they have no noticeable distortion (straight horizons). I try to stay level with what I'm shooting, but it never fails. I try fixing in post, but I hate losing half of my image during the straightening process.

Am I doing something wrong?

I get this using my Rokinon 14mm, my Canon 17-40L, and my 24-105L (at 24).


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SkipD
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Jun 06, 2016 20:16 |  #2

You can start by staying a bit further from your subject. Also, keeping the camera's film/sensor plane parallel to the main surfaces of the subject (in both vertical and horizontal directions) can help.

Please read our "sticky" (found in the General Photography Talk forum) tutorial titled Perspective Control in Images - Focal Length or Distance?.


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JeffreyG
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Jun 06, 2016 20:49 |  #3

Your title suggests you are tilting the camera fore/aft or side to side relative to the subject, inducing perspective distortion.

Some of what you wrote makes it sound more like just angular tilt, which can be fixed by cropping but which costs field of view?

The latter problem is pretty easy to fix. If you can see the horizon or vertical elements in the picture through your viewfinder, use the visible lines of the VF box to make sure that you are not tilting the camera.

If it is the former problem, sometimes just paying a lot of attention can help. Another item than can help (especially if you tend to point a little up or down) will be to mount the camera on a tripod with a level, and pay careful attention to the angles between everything.

And finally....don't place subjects that are very close to the camera at the exteme edges of the frame or they will appear stretched.


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Ace ­ and ­ Deuce
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Jun 06, 2016 20:49 |  #4

Thanks! Very useful read, but I'm talking more about this kind of distortion. Below is the same image, as shot and then the same image 'straightened'. Is there a way of preventing this? I didn't have the ability to shoot this at any other angle.

IMAGE: https://c5.staticflickr.com/2/1470/25175961036_33bcbb6e75_b.jpg
IMAGE LINK: https://flic.kr/p/EmHo​6J  (external link) 5709 (external link) by steven (external link), on Flickr

IMAGE: https://c3.staticflickr.com/8/7059/26903146754_b712326944_b.jpg
IMAGE LINK: https://flic.kr/p/GZkE​eQ  (external link) Perspective sample (external link) by steven (external link), on Flickr

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JeffreyG
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Post edited over 2 years ago by JeffreyG.
     
Jun 06, 2016 20:52 as a reply to  @ Ace and Deuce's post |  #5

Your image is distorted in the example shot because you pointed the camera upwards (in order to see the whole building). The solution (other than using software) is to use a Tilt-Shift lens like the Canon 17mm TS-E or the 24mm TS-E.

One other solution is to shoot even wider (with the camera dead level) and throw away the bottom half of the image (the part that sees the sidewalk right in front of you.

That's the key....if the camera is pointed up or down, the image will be distorted.


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Ace ­ and ­ Deuce
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Jun 06, 2016 20:58 |  #6

The problem with using a tripod, and maybe a tilt-shift is...I'm working with a fire department, so every shot is quick, on the fly, and varying distances from multiple subjects. There is never time to adjust other than maybe a quick shutter adjustment between shots. Does that basically mean I'm screwed and just have to deal with it in post? Sometimes it makes the shot look cool, but I don't really want the distortion if I can avoid it. Any suggestions for a shot like the one above to avoid such a tilt?


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JeffreyG
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Jun 06, 2016 21:04 |  #7

Ace and Deuce wrote in post #18031473 (external link)
Any suggestions for a shot like the one above to avoid such a tilt?

Either fix it in post like you are doing, or shoot wider and crop off the bottom half of the shot.

That obviously doesn't work if you need the full view of your 14mm, but if you need the FOV of 24mm tilted up, you can get the same shot at 14mm held level and then crop off the bottom.

Again.....the distortion is created when you tilt the camera upwards to see the whole building. So all solutions (other than software stretching) require that you keep the camera held level. This can be done with the two options (TS-E or wider) I mention. Does that make sense?


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Ace ­ and ­ Deuce
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Post edited over 2 years ago by Ace and Deuce.
     
Jun 06, 2016 21:11 |  #8

Thanks, Jeffrey! Yeah, it makes sense. I guess I was hoping for some magical setting that I missed somewhere, like a camera distortion button in ACR, that would do it for me, lol. I easily shoot 600-800 pics at a fire, so I was looking for a quick fix. I never messed with a TS lens...if you 'tilt' it to accommodate for a building shot (like above), then turn and shoot a person face to face, will that one be distorted if you didn't change the lens setting? I would assume it would.

...also, for the shot above, which way would you post it, as shot or edited?


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lilkngster
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Jun 06, 2016 23:05 |  #9

As mentioned above, hold the camera straight, parallel to the ground and directly facing your subject. Holding it above your head will give your some more sky and less ground to work with, plus you will gain the skill of being able to frame without looking at your viewfinder.

TS lens wont work for you.

I think the as shot too distorted and the edited is not wide enough.


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DreDaze
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Jun 06, 2016 23:32 |  #10

i wonder if you could put the camera on a long pole, and be able to shoot from farther away...like on the other side of the truck, but with the camera elevated high enough that the truck doesn't block the shot


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JeffreyG
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Jun 07, 2016 05:09 |  #11

I kind of prefer the edited version, but I wonder if perhaps doing the correction to 80%-90% of completely corrected would be a best compromise. The keystoning of the original shot is very evident, but I'm not sure you have to get rid of 100% of it to make for a good shot. It depends how bad the non-vertical edge at the left corner of the building will wind up appearing.

I'd agree that TS-E won't work for what you are doing. Those are lenses that should optimally be used from a tripod where you have time and precision to shift them correctly.

I'm assuming you are not making very large prints of these shots, and if not then you don't need super high resolution. That affords latitude for cropping, and so I think the best approach will be to shoot wider than you are used to, focus on keeping the camera level, and plan on cropping off the bottom of the shot in instances like this.


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Sibil
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Jun 07, 2016 14:45 |  #12

So I can learn, wouldn't shooting wider, at night, mess up the metering? Assuming it's not manual setting.




  
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Ace ­ and ­ Deuce
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Post edited over 2 years ago by Ace and Deuce.
     
Jun 07, 2016 14:54 |  #13

JeffreyG wrote in post #18031738 (external link)
I kind of prefer the edited version, but I wonder if perhaps doing the correction to 80%-90% of completely corrected would be a best compromise. The keystoning of the original shot is very evident, but I'm not sure you have to get rid of 100% of it to make for a good shot. It depends how bad the non-vertical edge at the left corner of the building will wind up appearing.

I'd agree that TS-E won't work for what you are doing. Those are lenses that should optimally be used from a tripod where you have time and precision to shift them correctly.

I'm assuming you are not making very large prints of these shots, and if not then you don't need super high resolution. That affords latitude for cropping, and so I think the best approach will be to shoot wider than you are used to, focus on keeping the camera level, and plan on cropping off the bottom of the shot in instances like this.

I guess I'll just have to rough through the editing & hope for the best. I don't just take pics of the fire itself, I get everything at the scene, especially the crews. This one was on a day that I only had my 100-400 with me...gotta make do with what you have at that time, lol.

IMAGE: https://c8.staticflickr.com/6/5652/21446800855_43bb61a174_b.jpg
IMAGE LINK: https://flic.kr/p/yFbs​Gx  (external link) Editing fun (external link) by steven (external link), on Flickr

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JeffreyG
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Jun 07, 2016 16:06 |  #14

Sibil wrote in post #18032202 (external link)
So I can learn, wouldn't shooting wider, at night, mess up the metering? Assuming it's not manual setting.

CWA and Evaluative should be consistent unless there is a significant difference in tone or incident light falling on the section of the frame you will crop as opposed to the part you plan to keep. I'd mainly keep an eye out for situations like that and be aware, but otherwise I would expect it will work about as well as the meter normally works.


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I use a Canon 5DIII and a Sony A7rIII

  
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Jun 07, 2016 16:25 as a reply to  @ Ace and Deuce's post |  #15

I like the photo, ( way cool ).

I am not a expert photographer, and I don't think I can say anything that could possibly help you deciding on what lens would be best for your kind of photography .

I can do this,, might not be much of a offer but its the best I can do.

So if you are ever in Northern Nevada PM me and You can spend a few hrs using my TSE 17mm and my TSE 24mm MK 1




  
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How to avoid perspective distortion when shooting 14, 17, and 24mm?
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