When I first learned photography, I often heard the use of telephoto lenses to “compress” the scene. This article aims to introduce what is the “compression effect” of a telephoto lens.

 

What is “Sense of Space”

In daily life, you will find a physical phenomenon that often appears, that is, “the far scenery is small, and the near scenery is large.” As shown below:

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This happens when you shoot with a wide-angle lens. The wider the lens, the more obvious this situation is. For example, the above photo was taken with a 16mm (full-frame) wide-angle lens.

Taking photos with a sense of space can make readers feel the environment of the scene more and feel like being there.

What is “Compression”?

At the other extreme of the wide-angle lens, a telephoto lens is used! When you use long focal lengths of 200mm, 300mm, etc., the previously mentioned effect of “far is small, close is large” will be reduced immediately: make the far and near scenes “almost big”, and the resulting photos will be like far and The nearby scenes are “compressed” together.

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When to apply a “Compression Effect”

When shooting the following situations, you can make more use of the compression effect of the telephoto lens!

(1) When shooting mountains

The telephoto lens "compresses" the distant mountains and the nearby grasses, forming an effect on the same plane.

The telephoto lens “compresses” the distant mountains and the nearby grasses, forming an effect on the same plane.

(2) When shooting the moon

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With a telephoto lens, you can shoot the moon from a distance and look closer to the future.

(3) When shooting portraits

When taking portrait photos, use the telephoto to bring the background closer to the model and reduce the sense of space. Photo by {link: https: //500px.com/photo/49811278/angelina-by-max-maximov} Max Maximov {/ link}

When taking portrait photos, use the telephoto to bring the background closer to the model, reducing the sense of space.
Photo by Max Maximov

(4) When shooting abstract feeling or texture

Photo by {link:https://www.flickr.com/photos/leshaines123/8503061618/}Les Haines{/link}

Photo by Les Haines

(5) When shooting a row of trees

Use a telephoto lens to reduce the distance between the distant trunk and the close.

Use a telephoto lens to reduce the distance between the distant trunk and the close.

You can discover more shooting opportunities!

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Author: Alex Tam