Tuesday, 25 March 2008

It must be wide angle week!

We like our toys, us photographers. Cameras, lenses, tripods, clamps, flash guns, bells and whistles - they're all great.

But owning these things is only half the fun – we want to see just what they can do in 'real world' scenarios. It's a bit like owning a Ferrari (I would imagine!) - looks good in the garage, but you really want to take it on the road to see what all the fuss is about.

Sometimes I get to play with toys before deciding whether or not to purchase them. Prime example - todays shoot, at White Hart Lane, the home of Tottenham Hotspur Football Club. Nothing glamorous for this one, just some standard product placement photography in and around the stadium. And the toy – Nikon's ultra-wide angle 14mm lens.

Part of the brief was to shoot some supplementary images alongside those of the products, for use in national, trade and local press – and I jumped at the chance of giving the football pitch/stadium the 14mm treatment. With its angle of coverage set at around 114 degrees, it takes in a huge vista which allows plenty of cropping options, if required, at the design stage.

Incidentally, this was the lens which I also used in the course of a recent shoot on the water, as described in this post, and came in especially handy for a set of pictures of a motor boat interior. So it's now had a couple of outings, and by all accounts is a great piece of kit.

Just to push the boundaries that little bit further, I am also getting to play with another ultra-wide angle lens this week, in the form of Sigma's 10-20mm, which offers an impressive 102.4-63.8 degrees coverage! Yes, I am like a kid in a sweet shop, and no, I make no apologies for it. I even have some test shots lined up already for the weekend. I can't wait!

Of course, these lenses have many more uses other than simply capturing wide scenes and interiors where space is at a premium. They enable me to create pictures which are just that little bit different and when combined with powerful lighting, as you will see in future posts, the results can be incredible.

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