What focal length for the most realistic pictures?

Started 2 months ago | Discussions thread
Magnar W
OP Magnar W Senior Member • Posts: 4,385
Re: What focal length for the most realistic pictures?

fferreres wrote:

Magnar W wrote:

fferreres wrote:

All, except maybe rectilinear ultra wides because we experience a field as mapping the image into a sphere (mental representation may not be a rectangular paper, which is why perspective, in drawing, needs to be taught, but you'd immediately know if something is done with a very wrong perspective).

May great painters make work with distorted perspective intentionally. It is not wrong, it is just different from what we are used with.

You asked what's natural. Then deviated into the artistic.

I am questioning: what is realistic? The perspective of a fisheye lens with correct scale everywhere in the frame, or a reticular lens with straight lines and distorted corners? Even the perspective of objects on the corners of a normal lens is somewhat distorted.

So FL is more about communicating distance to subject, where shorter FL will signal being close, and longer FL would signal not being close to the subject. If it's a beautiful model, a shorter FL may create more intimacy feeling, and if it's a long FL, would create more distance and reduce any effect of perspective.

Sure, for triggering emotions. But in this respect focus length is NOT used for realism, but to strengthen the story that is told.

It is used for realism. If you are very close, you'd have a perspective of needing a wider FOV. In the first comment you deviate into artistry. And in this second, you focus on the implications of the factual comment that FL often communicates distance to subject.

There is no simpe or a single true answer to the questions I raised in my OP.

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