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Using a Wide-Angle Lens on Your Digital Camera

Wide-angle lenses for a digital camera offer some creative advantages if you use them properly. When you use a wide-angle lens, you have opportunities to let your inner digital-image artist out. To get creative with a wide-angle lens attached to your camera:

1

Increase depth-of-field.

At any given aperture, wide-angle lenses provide a lot of depth-of-field, allowing you to picture a larger range of subject matter without the distracting blurriness of objects (see this figure).

2

Emphasize the foreground, as shown in this figure.

If you want to put extra emphasis on subjects in the foreground, such as a lake or meadow, while de-emphasizing the mountains in the background, use a wide-angle lens.

3

Distort the foreground.

Wide-angle lenses tend to exaggerate the size of objects closest to the lens (as you can see in this figure) — use this perspective distortion to create an interesting viewpoint.

4

Add a unique angle, like in this figure.

Wide-angle lenses allow you to think creatively and look at objects with a unique perspective.

5

Use slower shutter speeds.

Wide-angle lenses tend to minimize camera shake, so you can use slower shutter speeds to create photos like the one in this figure.

6

Show more stuff.

You can show more of your scene with a wide-angle lens, as shown in this figure.

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